A second opinion

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stuartryder
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A second opinion

Post by stuartryder » Fri Nov 15, 2013 10:44 pm

1:

When I say: can I have permission?
it isn’t really allowance I
seek;

just a pond with enough depth
for this light to get lost; to bury formulaic
reflections,

and,
so as not to offend the patient heron,
enough of silence that he can select

the perfect invertebrate
while I perfect the silence
that comes with patience.

2:

It happened in an instant.
I suppose it always will, that sudden spider,
threads invisible except when you knock
into it, onto it. Stuck with it.
It happens in an instant:

there’s that joke more risqué than the last one,
that pursed-lips, that tensioned-tongue,
the change in your eyes from sharp
to early-bed-at-sunset-when-we-should-be-making-our-own-plans.
When I should be cleaning oil from the braking

surfaces of this or that bike’s wheel;
when you should be going back to his place.
Go! go back to his stained teeth,
his sweat you know
like the back of your heart.

3:

Folk Song

on the radio
-grapher’s chair
you’re sitting
do I dare

ask your name
no
I daren’t
the barium’s on its way

you feel heavy enough
I tell myself
and luminescent without me
soon you’ll be propelled

through the big ring of fire
where you’ll pause beforehand
to say I want you
or I don’t

4:

I spend hours feels like days
reminiscing on what might become;
a twist of lime in a holographic glass,
an aeon filled with your details.
I discuss internally how strange it is for yellows
to turn to grey, and greys to white, and in essence you
were once nothing, and then a little more,
and now even the saturated county folds in
acquiescence as you spread your shadow
against the autumn cloud.

There is no development, no better.
The drawing-pins are the same size
as before. The hues of office mice continue
as black and grey and white.
There is no lengthening of claws,
no hypersensitivity of whiskers;
no double-click or tap of screen.
The closer all these signals bring us, the further
they drive us away, you losing the frequency of me.
Me, losing the amplitude of you,

5:

you, you. You walked from desk to door
like there wouldn’t be tomorrows
any more. And who’s to say
what could happen in a day or a week?
I considered the touch of our sleeves

as if the colour of my cuff mattered.
And then I couldn’t decide
which watch to have worn;
it would have to be the one with the rightest time
but I needed a second opinion.

6:

About the ruined graffiti shack
the wetlands grieve in the estuarine wind,
visitorless, straitened, silver
in the sunrise.

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Re: A second opinion

Post by Ros » Fri Nov 15, 2013 11:05 pm

Interesting - will have to come back to this. So far i didn't understand

the change in your eyes from sharp
to early-bed-at-sunset-when-we-should-be-making-our-own-plans.

or Folk Song,

but I'm enjoying the read. 6 seems a rather abrupt sort of end to the story?

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Re: A second opinion

Post by David2 » Sat Nov 16, 2013 2:03 pm

Good to see you back, Stuart, and in such typical vein - it's always concept albums, never just songs with you. Still, I like the concept albums.

I haven't got time to take the whole thing in yet, so I'll take it a piece at a time. Which is unfortunate because, although I like most of it (a lot), I think that no. 1 is unnecessarily obscure. But maybe it's necessarily obscure.

More later.

Cheers

David

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Re: A second opinion

Post by Jackie » Sat Nov 16, 2013 9:24 pm

Stuart, I'm getting a general idea of a terminal illness and how it affects N's relationships. There are some vivid images especially of these relationships, and I'll be back for more readings because of these.

I was confused by the viewpoint switch in 5 where the word "you" seems to refer first to one person and then to another, if I understood it right.

Jackie

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Re: A second opinion

Post by 1lankest » Mon Nov 18, 2013 2:13 pm

Hi Stuart,

Mixed on this. Whilst I think your use of language is superb and highly original, the poem is slightly lost on me (my fault perhaps). I can't seem to follow its track, despite many readings, although I vaguely get the drift. What I will say is how much I enjoyed the 'folk song' as a stand alone poem. It reminds me of some of Leonard Cohen's work I rather like, in both style and content. I understand the album poem concept, and approve of your ambition, but perhaps this one needs to be slightly more coherent? Please put me in my place if I'm wrong, any body.

Luke

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Re: A second opinion

Post by David » Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:04 pm

Having left things on that slightly downbeat note, I should come back to say that, after no. 1, I think things really take off, even though no. 2 is quite a big run-up to the leap.

The last three sections seem quite wonderful to me.

Cheers

David

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Re: A second opinion

Post by 1lankest » Sat Nov 23, 2013 12:39 pm

funny, David, I was about to say the same thing.

This hasn't been given the recognition it deserves. Beautiful writing, inspiring in fact.

especially this:

I spend hours feels like days
reminiscing on what might become;
a twist of lime in a holographic glass,
an aeon filled with your details.
I discuss internally how strange it is for yellows
to turn to grey, and greys to white, and in essence you
were once nothing, and then a little more,
and now even the saturated county folds in
acquiescence as you spread your shadow
against the autumn cloud.

Luke

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Re: A second opinion

Post by bodkin » Sat Nov 23, 2013 10:54 pm

I think I will need to return when it is earlier in the day.

Mixed feelings at the moment, but probably veering towards liking...

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Re: A second opinion

Post by Elphin » Sun Nov 24, 2013 9:03 am

So here is the thing Stuart, I know there is some cracking stuff in here. There is original language, original expression and some of the pieces I get as individual poems.

But like everyone else, it's difficult to make sense of the whole and so I wonder if this should be a collection or album of poems individually titled rather than a numbered sequence. I think a numbered sequence suggests a continuing narrative which this might have but nobody so far has really seen it. A collection also offers you the ability to title, and a title can do just enough, offer a guiding light to the reader.

I am all for poems where the reader has to "sense" what is being said, we shouldn't have it spelled out to us but when the poem is too difficult to sense then all the craft can be lost in frustration.

Of course, alternatively this reader may just have missed an obvious point to the sequence in which case I retract.

Thoughts only,

elph

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Re: A second opinion

Post by bodkin » Sun Nov 24, 2013 5:32 pm

Hi,

Let me summarise what I think this is about, if I am correct then you have succeeded, if I am wrong you may need to think it through.

I think the narrator, who is also the protagonist, is having an affair with somebody (a woman? call this person the subject for simplicity) who has some sort of serious medical condition. I think the references to patience in section#1 are puns on patient in its medical sense.

I think section#2 is about how the N's relationship with the subject (S) changes, and the N not being able to concentrate at work.

section#3 is about getting x-rays, the "ring of fire" is suggestive of a tomography machine...

section#4 is the N's drawn-out worry about the S

section#5 might suggest that the S ended the affair, and the N was focussing on irrelevant details the way one does when overwhelmed by huge events

section#6 -- no idea, sorry -- has the N run away to go bird-watching or something?

Ian
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Re: A second opinion

Post by stuartryder » Sun Nov 24, 2013 6:12 pm

hi all

just let me briefly say thanx for reading and spending time on this one. i
m mobile at the mo so wont blab on. i think this slots firmly into first draft or brain dump territory and although it is only supposed to be about herons and unrequited office lust, it probably tells other stories too. such is life.

so i probably do need to rethink and it probably does mean most of it will be trimmed as excess.

will have a closer read of your ideas on it when time and a desktop allow.

ciao

stuart

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