Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Deadlight

Another offering of two tonight, but I promise not to make a habit of it. I probably should have picked one of these only, as they're very similar, but I thought the contrast in form and non-form might be interesting to some readers. Please don't feel compelled to read both, however. There's a lot of poetry out there to enjoy tonight and I don't want to burn anyone out.



 Deadlight

We walked  together, your fetch and I
under a dry black moon
in a milk wet sky.

I talked at length to what had no ear.
Dead light crunched underfoot
in the burning of the year.

To all I asked, its cloud lips were sealed
and its star eyes were filmed
to blank white wheels.

It had no more breath, no more words than a stone
but yet it was better
than walking alone.



~August 2012






Posted for   OpenLinkNIght   at dVerse Poets Pub
Claudia is hosting a travel schedule of poets from around and through the world tonight. Come join us. Link in is live till midnight tomorrow.

~*~


I rewrote this poem into a syllable-counted, repeat-rhymed Welsh form belatedly for Kerry's Sunday Mini-Challenge:Cyhydedd Hir   after seeing so many excellent examples by the participants at Imaginary Gardens with Real Toads. (Mama Zen and Karin Gustafson, in particular, wrote some excellent ones.)
This is how it worked out:






Deadlight Redux



We walked together
in black moon weather
your fetch and I under a milk wet sky.

I talked, each word dear
to what had no ear
in the burning year, under dead light.

Its cloud lips were sealed
its blank eyes white wheels
all I asked, it peeled from my own sighs.

It had no more home,
no more words than stone
yet walking alone's hard by dead light




I attempt to read both iterations below:




Process notes:  
fetch (2) — n  the ghost or apparition of a living person
(from the online World English Dictionary)



Images: Black Moon © joyannjones 
Night Holwers, by jurvetson on flick'r
Shared under a Creative Commons Attribution Only License
Cropped by joyannjones with gratitude and appreciation for the original work, which can be viewed at the link above.


62 comments:

  1. Wonderful! I love them both and maybe the deadly form one a little bit more as it gets tighter and has footsteps and questions (as in the last line) instead of certainties. Which did you write first? My experience with the form was not good, which I think is because I looked for a topic to suit the form rather than having a lyric that I adapted to the form. And it is beautiful to see them both together!

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  2. Thanks, Susan. I haven't read yours as yet--will be sure to do so. I wrote the top one first--then rewrote it in form as stated.

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  3. absolutely captivating lines..your poetry always shines and burns so bright. the first one rings a bit deeper within though i enjoyed both versions. thank you for such beauty~

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  4. Damn, damn, damn! I'm gonna need a hat today!

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    1. I think this one would suit you:

      http://www.flickr.com/photos/jarm13/4539030724/

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  5. It was interesting to read both poems and note the changes. I found the first made the biggest impact on me....your images are always so wonderful and original, Hedge. The "dry black moon", the "milk wet sky".

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  6. nice...i like the first...freedom from form i say...haha...the milk wet sky, really cool touch...and def better than walking alone....really nicely done hedge...

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  7. Beautiful...I love both forms but the 1st feels deeper, as Yelena says...more unsettling somehow...great writing :)

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    1. Interesting. I like the second best as it seems tighter, but I agree the first has a bit more detail and nuance--it's really kind of you to read both, Louise(and everyone.)

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  8. usually i'm all for free form but this one i found won much with the form...not sure what it is..think i have to go back and re-read but the images seem clearer and tighter in the form variation..

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  9. Hi Joy- first thanks for the kind reference and pairing with MZ (who's Cir-whatever-it-is) was wonderful. I really loved the first one, then the second even more, but I have to say that I may not have liked the second more, had I not read the first. (Ha!) (How's that for waffling?) To be very specific - I think the second works really beautifully but the last stanza of the first poem, I found to be extremely affecting - this idea of it being better to walk with the white/night sky than alone is less clear in the second poem because you weren't able to fit the syllables "better" in. I found that comparative word to be very powerful, and although you say it's hard alone, I couldn't grasp the lonliness as poignantly in that stanza. Very interesting, beautiful, (and well done) both though. Must get back to work! (At office.)

    Re my own silly stuff - I added lubricate to mine in place of facilitate - it just popped into my head after reading your kind comment - I don't know if better but a lot more oily. k.

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    1. yes, I tried and tried to keep it with the word better even changing the end(and sticking my tongue out at the form) into a mostly unchanged couplet of the first--but in the end I thought posting them both worked best. Thanks for reading, k. (I like lubricate as well.)

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  10. I am unable to pick between the two. The first had a lovely rhythm to it, because of the form I suppose. Even though they said the same the second had a more personal feeling to it... like it was alive. That probably doesn't make sense.

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    1. That's fine around here, DA, but actually, I think I understood you. You heard me liking the second, in my voice, or in the piece itself, just a bit more, maybe.

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  11. I love the Cyhydedd Hir in the three line stanza - wanted to try it out myself... the redux really concentrates the ideas. I love the white wheel eyes.. reminds me a bit of The Tinder Box, a most beloved childhood tale.

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    1. Thanks for reminding me of the Tinder Box--I loved the dogs and wished I had one(a magic tinder box.) Thanks for reading Kerry--your own Cyhydedd Hir deserves a shout out as well. Anyone interested will find it at the Mini-Challenge linked above.

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  12. Nice to see how a poem can be told in two forms so subtle differences shown

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  13. Oh--love these both--but am captivated by the rhythm of the second piece--loved it

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  14. This was a difficult form! I couldn't help but read both- liked the first one best for the sound of it. I found it enigmatic but loved the feel of it on my tongue.

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  15. I love them both..but the first is my favorite, beautiful!

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  16. I really thoroughly enjoyed these, but for me the first free forms was right up my street. The opening stanza with the milk wet sky and the catch just set the scene so well and I was right in there with you. Fantastic!

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  17. I absolutely love that first one. A thing defined by negatives is still a thing...isn't it?

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  18. A brilliant poem. The ending is perfect. Even an imaginary friend is better than being utterly alone. I think I prefer the first version, there are no unnecessary words and it carries its own lovely rhythm.

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  19. Hi- I liked the readings. A whisper. But kind of urgent and powerful. "The Devil takes care of it's own". I'm a rocker at heart. I think I heard a little Joan Jett.

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    1. Yeah--nothing beats rock n roll, for doing what it does. Nice to see someone under the age of sixty playing it too. Glad you enjoyed my hoarse vocals. ;_)

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  20. I loved both poems & it was neat to see the differences created by a change in rhythm & texture. Interesting ~ talking and walking all alone surrounded & inspired by the "black moon weather" ~ would this night have been a new moon? There but unseen like our words being spoken & no one to hear? Lovely work ~ made me wonder right outloud ~ thank you!

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  21. This is interesting Joy! To rewrite in a different form puts discipline in the thinking. It is more challenging certainly!

    Hank

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  22. I like the ending and the beginning of the first one best. I like the contrast of dry and wet and the image of a deadlight rather than a headlight.

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  23. hey hedge

    it would be corny to say you manage to cast a spell
    with your readings . . . but i am a child of the CORN - lol
    . . . so . . .
    i said it!!!

    this is a cruel cold duet - a clever couple of complimentry
    certainties wafting doubt, for sure . . . the remote nature of the writing trancends the isolation with its craft . . .which craft you ask? - - - the skilled potic kind that escapes its conception by the sheer power of its own concoction . . .

    it only works for me if it pollutes my blood with snow crytals and it only chills if you mean it . . . and you convince me with the strength of two imaginations crosswiring that you do . . .

    that thing - the element of other that i see - that you see and feel in that b/w picture . . . you explain it and say it, convert it into a written and voiced sculpture . . .

    right here - you extend 'the other' and its . . . well . . .

    bewitching - ok i am pushing my luck . . . but i do leave here

    haunted by your skills

    buzzing!!!

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    1. Then my work here is done. Giving you a buzz is what it's all about.

      I thought that second picture captured all kinds of stuff about my relationships. (It's coyotes, actually, but looks like a couple of fetches to me.) And this was just nonsense compared to the serious stuff you lay down, Arron, but I'm grateful to have you reading and the buzzing is cream. Thanks.

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  24. apologies for those damned typos - its 2;30am and these matchsticks that prop my lids are hindering my screen view :D

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    1. I speak fluent typonese--no worries.

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  25. Loved the re-work, though the first iteration is still wonderful poetry in my view. I didnt have a change to hear the spoken, but in the revised your opening lines gave me that melting feeling inside. I adore how you can execute the imagery my friend, always have. Send love and peace ~ Rose

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  26. I love the way you use words, although I'm stumped on one thing; what does "fetch" mean?

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    1. fetch (2)

      — n
      the ghost or apparition of a living person

      (from the online World English Dictionary)

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  27. I like both versions ~ Thanks for sharing them ~

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  28. Two different impressions here for me too...the first seems tighter to me, perhaps because each stanza works it's way down to a short final line. I'm not really familiar with the form, but the second poem's longer final lines see to allow more room for reflection...In either case, they are fine, intelligent constructions that give much to resonate with me..very nicely done, as always.

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  29. Liked both of these, mysterious, yet comforting. The second was my favorite. I read it aloud with an Irish accent--rich. I love the singsong of the Welsh. Now, I'll listen to your reading. . .

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  30. Both versions of the poem have strengths, stemming from their structure - the first more free-flowing, the second more controlled but more musical. I'm a structural poet, even when writing free verse, so I would bend with those preferring door number two. Either way, good write!

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  31. I wouldn't dream of reading just one!Both are wonderful, but I have to say the second one is my favorite. I'm for free form usually, but the poem just has this certain something extra. It's tighter yes, but it's more revealing at the same time.

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  32. really nice work Joy. I do things like this a lot, more often with my paintings but with poetry as well, at least for me, some lines/thoughts are too good and you want to see how they fit in with others, anyhow, nice to see another out there that seems to at least, do something similar. Great lines, love the use of fetch.

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  33. I preferred the first which is lovely - but then you know my dislike of syllable-counting! Please, what is "your fetch"? I envisaged a dog carrying a ball!

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    1. I'm sorry viv--I'll stick the definition in the main body of the post--a fetch is an archaic term for a "sending" of a dead person, not exactly a ghost, since ghosts are passives,while fetches, they have come for something. Thanks for reading.

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  34. "I talked at length to what had no ear." ... That is a poem on its own. What a great bit of philosophy. If you think about it, most things/people do not have ears. They have miniscule information receptors, which they use at the base minimum---and then only so that they will some guidance in what to say next. People are mouths, not ears. They want to speak, not hear. They want to teach, not learn.

    I prefer the first poem because of the wording in this particular line.

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    1. That is so true, Shawna. And lovers(dead or alive) are the worst. Thanks for your insights, always valuable to me.

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  35. I have to agree with most...the first version, for me is the winner. But there are never any losers in your poetry, Hedge. And yes, better to walk with this dark light than alone. A chllingly beautiful work!

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  36. after 47 comments, i can't imagine what else there is to say... but i love how you did this. seems natural, despite your confession of finding the form intimidating. i felt like it was challenging to make the form not too cutesy or limerick-like. you certainly accomplished that. yay!

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    1. Thanks, marian. The 47th comment means as much or more than the first to me. I agree--the form wants to be unserious in English--the rhyme is so frequent, I think, along with the syllable-enforced cadence. Yours was excellent.

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  37. Interesting to read the comments. For me version one is just as musical, just as tight, and I prefer it, for one because it's far more effective to let the word "alone" stand alone at the end.

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    1. Thanks, Mark. I wrote three or four different versions of the end, and I agree I think the first one has the most impact, and is the closest to what I was trying to say. Thanks for reading.

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  38. Very similar yet the shutter in the end of the second lingers and I appreciate the comfort in the end of the first. Both are gorgeous, I especially like the "milk wet sky" and am crazy about the "black moon". :)

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  39. I like both very much, but maybe prefer the first... Still. Wow. Tight and intense. Well penned!

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  40. Great write, I loved the re-write in a different form, not sure I can choose between the two!

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  41. interesting comparison / contrast

    though i did feel i responded best to the first version -

    yet, esp liked, "all I asked, it peeled from my own sighs" in the second ;-)

    nice work, thank you ;-)

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  42. So hard to choose..... reading alone made me feel more comfortable with the first version, but listening made the cadence of the second much warmer. The amazing meter and use of the long"i" vowel, soft rhyme, at the end of each triplet makes this a perfect repetition..... Hearing your voice bringing it to life was an absolute pleasure Joy...... Kudos!

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  43. I love how you treated this myth. It is deeply personalized and I like that.

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  44. Very interesting to see how the two forms twisted the outlook Joy.. you've made me want to try the latter form.. thank you!

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  45. stunning, as always. i tend to prefer the less structured form, but that's just a personal preference.

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'Poetry is an echo asking a shadow to dance' ~Carl Sandburg