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Yeah, yeah, so I'm all jealous of the artists... - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Yeah, yeah, so I'm all jealous of the artists...
In jealousy of the artists' ability to do an imitative challenge, I've delved back into my formal poetry phase, figuring that, while I can't write something in the style of Shakespeare, I can at least attempt a sonnet, right? I decided on a Petrarchan form instead of Shakespearean, though. (Octave followed by sestet, ABBAABBA CDCCDC.) Love is too fluffy to set to rhyme without possible sugar-related health problems (at least for me; better poets can do it, I'm sure), so I decided on evil.

Dark Arts
It whispers ancient secrets to his mind
In empty, sterile halls bereft of cheer--
Obscenities arise in the austere
            and dreary world cold progress has designed.
Beneath fluorescent lights, he fumbles blind
Toward deep and bloody roots of mortal fear.
At last, he finds it, grasps it, sees it clear
And seizes power--total, unconfined.

His soul in torn and ragged tatters flies
From never-living emptiness and gloom
To endless death in dark and violent skies--
            and dazzled minions cheer his hollow rise.
While all they have, they gleefully entomb,
The cynic world, in vindication, sighs.
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Comments
dreamer_marie From: dreamer_marie Date: January 3rd, 2006 05:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
I like it, especially the octave. The sextet maybe is a bit too much, especially
And the cynic world, in vindication, sighs
I can see the dazzled minions and the gleeful entombing, but I don't see how the world can sigh in vindication. Maybe I'm particularly bad at poetry, but this image seems a bit forced to me. Couldn't you say it in a more simple way?
But anyway, kudos for your poem! I would never be able to write anything like that!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 05:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Couldn't you say it in a more simple way?

In iambic pentameter with a rhyme scheme? Probably not. ;)
dreamer_marie From: dreamer_marie Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
Good point :-)
miss_daizy From: miss_daizy Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
That was my favorite line :) I like the mysterious or impossibe imagery of it. The whole poem was very good. Nice job ~ it's somewhat tempting to give it a try. That's a good poem to me ~ one that makes the reader want to write.
minoukatze From: minoukatze Date: January 3rd, 2006 05:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Sigh- that's gorgeous. So evil;)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks!
maple_clef From: maple_clef Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
*grins* Okay, well suffice to say I'm jealous of your skill with words (as well as the artists) ;)

I think slightly darker subjects sit better with poetry for me, as a reader. I'm not sure I could tell you why; perhaps it is the tendancy towards fluff where the alternative is concerned. So, while I'm afraid I probably can't appreciate the craft as much as your writing deserves, I really like the lyricism and turn of phrase here.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks!

I think Hallmark has ruined rhyming poetry for everyone for a long time.
erised1810 From: erised1810 Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
i knowwhat it's like to try a sonnet. It's bloody hard to keep the rhythm of the iambic pentameter (i THINK it went off a few times but on a whole this is ten times better than my first and last effort on this And i'malso not sayign anythign because I was far more fixed myself on tryignto fit five syllables in a line)

thanks for refreshing my memory on rhyme schemes etc. I'm glad I knew what you meant. The way you threw terms just like that made me gulp first. :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I just counted. I have one line in tetrameter, and an anapest instead of an iamb in the final line.

I occasionally go on wild bouts of poetry. I'll never be one of the world's great poets, but the forms really teach some linguistic discipline.
erised1810 From: erised1810 Date: January 4th, 2006 09:43 am (UTC) (Link)
what on earth is an anapest??? I think I need to dig out my literature books.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 4th, 2006 04:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's the short-short-long foot in "And the world" as opposed to the short-long foot (iamb) of "the world." Anapestic meter sounds like the theme from the Lone Ranger if it goes on too long: da-da-DUM, da-da-DUM, da-da-DUM, DUM DUM, da-da-DUM, da-da-DUM... and so on. ;P
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 07:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Fixed the tetra line and the anapest.
tree_and_leaf From: tree_and_leaf Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
Nice - and Petrarchean is harder than Shakespearanian; lucky Italian poets, with all their rhyme possibilities... The cynic world works for me, though it does have a slightly eighteenth century flavour. No bad thing, though!

A friend of mine recently challenged me to write a sonnet about angioplasty, but it has been giving me some difficulty.

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 06:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
About angioplasty? :blinks:

That's a tough subject for a poem at all! Good luck.
tree_and_leaf From: tree_and_leaf Date: January 3rd, 2006 07:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
_If_ I ever succeed I shall post it on my lj - but the key word here is if (wonders what rhymes with angioplasty...)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 07:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
According to RhymeZone, not much. ;)
From: (Anonymous) Date: January 3rd, 2006 10:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
Sorry for the random intrusion, but the word nasty just came to mind...
From: greenwoodside Date: January 3rd, 2006 07:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
Disclaimer: I know nothing about poetry, and thus everything that follows should be taken with an ocean of salt.

I like it. I think what niggles I have arise from the placing of commas and full-stops. For instance:

"...cold progress has designed.
Beneath fluorescent lights, he fumbles blind..."

I'd be rather inclined to get rid of the comma altogether, then to shift the full stop creating a caesura after 'lights'.

The full stop after 'clear' could also go. I say this only because the poem seems to want to flow towards a crescendo in the final line, and the full stops IMHO seem to get in the way.

Also, the phrase 'all their lives' mislead me a bit. It could just be yours truly being obtuse, which happens pretty often unfortunately. :) But at first I thought it meant 'throughout their lives' and so it took me a while to figure out what the minions were entombing.

I like the last line. The only alternative phrasing I can think of is "The world, that cynic, vindicated sighs." and your version is definitely better.

Thanks - I really enjoyed reading that. :D
From: (Anonymous) Date: January 3rd, 2006 07:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
You're definitely right about the period after "clear," though I'm inclined to leave a comma after "lights," as it's just a descriptive clause about where he's fumbling.

I was going to use "world" instead of "lives," but I didn't want to use the word "world" twice in two lines (especially since it appeared in an earlier line).
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 07:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
Er, that was me, obviously. Forgot I wasn't logged in.
From: greenwoodside Date: January 3rd, 2006 07:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm always doing that. ;)

Yes, on second thoughts it is better that the comma stays in place after 'lights'. Though (according to my very subjective personal tastes, of course) I'd still remove the full stop from after 'designed' - that way 'beneath fluorescent lights' could be tagged to either clause...I like it with the second one, but I like it with the former too because f. lights seem to go rather well with 'cold progress'. Conjures up images of laboratories and sterility, you know?

Anyway, thanks. :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: January 3rd, 2006 08:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
That changes the meaning, but I do kind of like it. Hmmm. Will think about that.
From: fizzko Date: January 8th, 2006 12:45 am (UTC) (Link)
Er, this comment is a few days late, but oh well. Just wanted to say that I love the imagery, and it so completely fits its title. The last line has inspired me. :)
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