March 16, 2019 at 7:16 pm #82458
I was reading some Richard Brautigan and a bit enraptured by the crazy imagery in Trout Fishing in America, so I wrote this down:
We were walking through the woods of dull New England pines, with me in my yellow boots and coat.
God lifted up the punkwood stump of rotting winter, and underneath all the smells of spring sprang out. I saw crawling worms, and pus-red centipedes and snails, and long-legged blind things stretched beneath a mat of flattened leaves. There was a red-black salamander, and as it loped away I looked into a dog-eared book I had which called the smells of spring by name. “Needles, fungus, ozone-smell” scurried out of sight. I smiled fondly after it, and marked its page for colder days.
God put down the log, winter fell over barren earth, and we went on.
“Can we do another?” I asked.
“Maybe later,” He said.
I didn’t intend this as poetry, but I think that’s the closest to what it is. I liked the feel of writing something like this, and I’d like to write more! Can you eloquent poets give me criticism on what, if anything, I’m doing that works, and maybe some resources to learn how to improve at this short form, ideally prosodic writing?
- This topic was modified 1 week ago by Taylor Clogston.
taylorclogston.com/learn-how-to-writeMarch 16, 2019 at 8:09 pm #82463
@taylorclogston I thoroughly enjoyed reading this! First: this could be described as flash fiction, if you wanted to. I would say that it qualifies very loosely as poetry– yes, the feel and lyric of it is very poetic, but the form doesn’t fit into any poetic category (rhyme, meter, blank verse, line breaks, annoying loss of punctuation).
I absolutely love the word choice of this. If you decide to continue writing similar pieces, the rich verbs and nouns are perfect! With that said, in a couple places it’s a little unclear as to what you are referring to: “‘Needles, fungus, ozone-smell’ scurried out of sight. I smiled fondly after it, and marked its page…”, for example. What is the “it” the character is smiling at– the book? the little creatures? the smells? Maybe using the word “them” instead would make it more clear, especially since you describe the book with “it” in the next phrase.
That’s really all I have to say here. The piece is beautiful, and the whole concept is great. Keep it up!
A writer is a world trapped in a person. -Victor HugoMarch 19, 2019 at 7:44 pm #82971
@martina Thanks so much for the feedback! Clarity is really not my strong suit.
taylorclogston.com/learn-how-to-writeMarch 19, 2019 at 10:55 pm #83083
This is a very nice poem! I liked the imagery of walking through the woods with God. I think “blind things” is a little too vague, but other than that (and the points made above), this poem has a good rhythm as well as great specific descriptions.
Well, the good news is I can tell you that this style would most likely be classified as “prose poetry,” which as far as I know is an actual type of poetry. Unfortunately, the only other poem I know of that’s written is this style is “Freedom to Breathe” by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. I realize this isn’t much information, but maybe it’ll help point you in the right direction.
To the glory of God and for the advancement of His kingdom.March 20, 2019 at 8:13 pm #83212
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