Archive for the ‘ Poetry ’ Category

A Quick Note

A Quick Note:

As there has been a rather unexpected rise in the amount of downloads, it is probably best for me to keep you few and dedicated readers updated on where things stand. I do not enjoy the thought of what torment you must be going through wondering ‘Is he still writing? Will I ever know the end? How will I survive without a new influx of epic poetry I probably didn’t even mean to start reading because I thought it was prose?” Alas, the anguish must be so great in you, I am sure. It pains me to know that I may well be the cause.

But worry not. It will be finished someday, that is not in question. The delay has been due to a combination of personal life (finding a faery-princess of my own who required no insignificant amount of effort to wrestle from the hands of all her other suitors) and intellectual trepidation about how to move the story from where it was to where I wanted it to be.

Luckily, the intellectual trepidation is no more, and I have even begun slowly churning out stanzas once again. I finally have settled on the complete story arc, and now it is but a matter of finding the time to put it into poetics. And I assure you, I am focusing far more on the meter and flow with these last four Parts than I did with the First, partially because I have hopefully improved as a poet, and partially because whereas the first Part was very careless in story as well as meter, and thus the loose flow matched the mood, these last parts are far tighter in both.

I deeply appreciate everyone who has asked me about my progress on the story, I sincerely didn’t expect anyone to read this unless forced upon them by my insistence. Those few strangers who have said such sweet words in reviews and shown such unwarranted interest have my humblest gratitude. And to  you friends who always ask about how it is going even though you likely do not truly want to hear me babble once more about it, thank you for continuing to humour me and for pushing me to finish.

My hope is now to at least get the first draft of Parts Six and Seven done by the time the snow here in the Midwest begins to float down, and then take the winter to both tighten those and draft out Eight and Nine.

Thank you for reading my measly addition to a long-dead genre, I can but hope the ending I have will make the long wait worth it.

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To Me on my Birthday

I heard a knock knock knocking on my door
where I sat alone, (for I’m such a bore)
and I yelled, “Who’s there so very late?”
“It’s Death, come to celebrate
you being one year closer to your ending Fate!”
“Come in, dear friend, I don’t lock my door!”
In he walked, and muttered “You’re such a bore!
I come with gifts of drink, let’s go
and rid you of this pointless sorrow!”
‎”But Death, what if Fate finds me tonight!
The very thought gives me quite the fright!”
“Silly boy, you can’t hide behind this door!
Fearing Fate but makes you a terrible bore!
Let us go and brave the night!
And if Fate arrives, we’ll put up a fight!”
So Death and I walked out that door,
I, one year older, and less the bore.

An Ode to Soren

The statue sat in thinking pose
long fingers stretched up past his nose
pondering the worlds every woe
as burning sun gave to blustery snow
that affected not his train of thought
no matter how hard the wind did blow.

Across the twisting graveled path
sat a boy, engrossed in thoughtful task
of what the marbled form did spend
so much time lost in mental math
considering or seriously solving
though stuck on the pedestal in the grass.

Was he remembering some love long lost?
Or how creation came with fallen cost?
Or had death covered his closest friend
with blackened breath like creeping moss?
Did he think of the burdened poor
who died from hunger by the score?
Or was he sending prayers to heavens gates
past the fabled golden shores?

But the statue (who is you, Soren, my good man!)
sat untouched by natures chilling fan
to only challenge the mind of passer-bys,
who, on seeing his brow-furled guise
would stop to think and, thinking, stand
with a thousand thoughts passing ‘neath their eyes
engaged with sorting truth from lies.

For when one man thinks,
others join, minds a’brew;
and thinking men, my friend,
is what will always please you.

An Ode to Kristin

A happy sparrow claimed the sky
and all the twinkling stars set high,
called them children, sang them lullabies,
then tucked them to bed at the end of the night.

But one little star would rise so early
and rub its eyes in an avid hurry,
for sleep made the bright, bright sun so blurry
and it wished to wave goodbye.

The sparrow (who’s you, dear Kristen!)
saw the evening star’s soft glisten
as a teared rolled down its pointed chin
and, ever caring for her children,
asked

“Why cry, why cry, little evening star?”
“For the sun waves not to me from afar!
I wake while she still sits low in her yard,
but I burn too low to be seen!”

The sweet sparrow, ever caring, ever loving,
waited till the next evening,
then, in flute-like voice, began singing
to the clouds that lounged on the mountains.

Her voice carried such mournful tones
that the clouds could not rest on their stoney thrones
so swiftly they flew before the coming gloam
and reached the soon-setting sun.

Thus as the sun settled quietly down,
the clouds covered her light like an evening gown
and the early-bird star shined like an emperor’s crown
as he waved ever excitedly.

Now able to see the farewell wave,
for the clouds had softened the light of day,
the sun happily in kind repaid
and bid goodnight to the evening star.

The star, so excited, kissed the sparrows cheek,
and the little bird’s heart reached its peak,
nearly bursting with a happy squeak,
for the love of children to any ends,
no matter if she must sing to clouds in the faroff mountains
or cart a little boy around on blessed weekends,
was all the happy sparrow wished to do.

An Ode to Jennifer

The rising moon said to the setting sun:
“You must trim your brilliant bangs,
their flaring length dims my ivory face
and keeps the world watching you,
for my soft-lit lamp can’t keep up the pace.”

But the sun, (who is you, sweet Jennifer!),
laughed, and let loose her shining hair,
“Silly moon! Were I to carelessly cut
my fiery-scarlet locks,
weaved quilt-like ’round the world and ‘neath doors long shut,
your own ivory-hued light,
though comforting ’tis true, would fade to black,
for it is I who lends the lamp to you!

So as night rolls over the oceans-blue
and sips up the cities sprawled,
be not jealous nor feel too much ignored,
but remember my bright rays
will, like a flute well played, fade (still adored!)
and leave an ever-haunting chord
that will echo from your dusty face
and return back to this earthy place,
so that those who hear the reverberations
will shower you with un-earned praise:
for though you are loved when I have slipped to bed,
it is I who make you great
with my long-stretched brilliant bangs!”

On Poetry

On Poetry,
An Introduction to Eliza’s Fancy

Dearest Reader,

There was once a time in history when poetry filled so many vast and endless pages of books that one couldn’t step into a family library without the very ink singing in meter and stomping in beat. But those days have long faded, and the rhythm of the song-stories is no longer easy to distinguish, as our ears have grown accustomed to the crashing marches and brass pitches of the ever forward-moving novel. The average book talks, whispers, and occasionally gives a nearly unidentifiable yelp that startles you into confusion, but it rarely flutters its voice in sweet-spun melody. Even modern poetry has exchanged form for freedom, and thus lost that which made it poetry in the first place while still grasping pointlessly on to the word whose meaning it has rejected. Yet because both the novel and the modern poem can be done with such outstanding talent and gripping emotion, they have often brought with them a deriding sneer towards the very literature that paved the way for their rise. For the very first stories that shook the artistic world were poems, set to song, and accompanied with a tapping foot. And when one loses the ability to read music, it seems like a droll mess instead of the framework for a symphony.

It has been to many peoples surprise when I explain that the book herein is written with some semblance of meter, and that I try and use rhythm as a musician would use it. There are verses, choruses, bridges, introductions, codas, and every other structural support found in music both on the radio and in the concert hall. And while I make no assurance that such things are written particularly well or sung with a particularly smooth tone, they are nonetheless composed with a particularly meticulous plan: to make the poetry as natural as possible to a completely untrained reader.

It is my hope, and here is where all criticism of my form should rest, that the beat will flow as naturally as speech while still imparting that sense of structure. To those of you who have not touched poetry since you were forced to stand in class and recite a Shakespearean speech in a manner that would have saddened even Shakespeare, do not try and read this with any forced timing or dramatic bravado (ah, how the ill-trained have ruined the greatest of the Bard’s monologues with the dreary pseudo-beat taught in schools). Such an attempt will only make you lose your interest, as well as your place in the story. Instead, read it as you would a speech: pause where the sentences demand a pause, stress where the words want the stress, and inflect as the emotion imposes inflection.

Though it may take some small amount of practice, know that learning to read as you sing will open up an entirely new world itself filled with a thousand worlds. The greatest fictional works in history have all mixed the quick wit and sharp tongue of a storyteller with the practiced ability to use word-harmonies as they would a piano, striking melodic notes with rhyme and creating thick, heart-rending chords with structure. While I am the least of these, I hope my own simplicity of form will aid in training your mind to work with your ear in singing songs to your soul.

Author

P.S. The only time you may need to speak unnaturally is in the rare cases that -ed endings must be pronounced to maintain the beat. I avoid this as often as I can, but on occasion it becomes a necessary sacrifice to the tidal movement of the song. These will be written with a dash, as in ‘blame-ed’, and are to be pronounced with the -ed as an extra syllable (blame/id).

The Little Toy

The little toy lay on the ground where he fell
When the door had shut a little too fast
And jarred the table, shook the room,
Sending the poor little toy to his doom.

Shattered, broken, beaten and bruised,
The fall had left him in pieces, in parts,
His left leg sliding across the floor,
His right arm crumpled up by the door,
His left hand barely hanging on,
While his head was scratched, the paint nearly gone.

What would the little boy think, what would he do,
When he came home to find his favorite toy fallen, split in two?
Would he cry and hold his parts up high?
Would he throw his remains towards the bright blue sky?
Would he grow angry, bury him far underground?
Would he sullenly walk away without a sound?

How could the boy love a toy no longer fit
To be all he had in his expansive mind?
A policeman, a cowboy, an astronaut,
Courageous, romantic, humble and kind?

Where once his limbs had been strong as stone,
The years had wearied him down past the bone,
The burden of life had grown and grown,
And now, now he would be ever alone.

The door creaked open, there was the patter of feet,
And the sound of a young boys cry of defeat
As he saw his favorite toy scattered about;
“What had happened to the toy once so stout?”

But the little boys father leaned over his son
And soothed the child, calmed the storm,
Gathered the legs, the arms, the head,
While the little toy thought, “Surely, I am dead.”

The son watched with tear stained cheeks
As the father placed the pieces together so neat,
And with a tiny tool and steady hands
Put the little toy all together again.

Triumphant, the son lifted the little toy
For what the fall had broken his father had fixed,
And what had split apart, now was even stronger stitched;
Thus, the little boy loved even more
The little toy that had fallen to the floor.