poetry critical

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Hot Air and Halitosis
unknown

There was a really disgusting thing.
 1
A nerd. With the bulky glasses to
 2
match this little pudge.
 3
 
 
They called him Zit. They said this to
 4
his face—if they could get close enough.
 5
 
 
Everyday in class he let one go.
 6
A person, and other things.
 7
Noisy. Quite rude.
 8
 
 
The teacher approached him about it, said
 9
he was irrelevant to the benefit of
 10
the class, and that he better do something
 11
about it. Then the teacher looked like she
 12
was going to gag, but miraculously held her
 13
 
 
composure—barely. He didn’t though, like the
 14
ones in the room. He was going to go in, but
 15
their snickers were too apparent; they wanted
 16
him to leave.
 17
 
 
He ditched school the rest of the day, needing
 18
to rest. He saw a spider and squashed it,
 19
thinking of how her breath had smelt: pepper
 20
 
 
mint. Really gross, actually. Fake.
 21
He was going to put the spider in his mouth
 22
 
 
but chose not to, as it would have made
 23
things worse: bad breath and leaking pipes
 24
wasn’t his fault, it just happened. They
 25
repelled him, and it wasn’t his goal. But
 26
he couldn’t change it.
 27
 
 
Because his parents didn’t care. They just told
 28
him his infamous stature needed to deflate—
 29
only, they said if they did that, the
 30
 
 
gas might explode something.
 31
Which was ridiculous. Like them.
 32
 
 
He was going to squash another spider but
 33
decided it wasn’t worth it. People hurting him
 34
did not justify cruelty.
 35
 
 
It never did.
 36
 
 
Their words were just hot air
 37
to him, gaseous to the nose
 38
but nothing else; you couldn’t die
 39
 
 
of a bloody nose, or worse,
 40
another case of bad breath.
 41

26 Jun 08

Rated 7.5 (7.2) by 8 users.
Active (8): 6, 10, 10, 10
Inactive (4): 1, 1, 2, 5, 8, 10, 10, 10

(define the words in this poem)

(3 users consider this poem a favorite)



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Comments:

you've a storytellers tongue and your tales leave me breath-less as they twist the tortured telling -- I'd of eaten the Spider so I could weave another Mystery -- I'm listening
 — AphroDite

Really appreciate your comment on my poem - just found it the other day. In a rush right now but will read this properly in a bit. Just wanted to say thanks.

smugzy
 — unknown

thanks for reading AphroDite; and for letting me know i spun a good story.

Smugzy, i look forward to your comment. as for your poem, no problem. i like your writing, look forward to seeing more works by you.
 — listen

This held me spell bound and i kept thinking "Is this poem gonna make this guy as disgusting as me?" but no, not quite. I blame everything on my parents and the immaculate upbringing they gave me.

Larry not my fault Lark
 — larrylark

Larrylark, thanks for commenting on the poem. it means a lot when you stop by.
 — listen

wow.
: )
 — fractalcore

Do you mean 'his' pudge in line 3?  Line 4 - said this to his face is better than told this to his face.  They weren't telling him a name, they are calling him a name.  

Line 6-7:  He let one go, a person and other things.  What does that mean?  You can't let go a person.  If you mean gas, you might need to make that clear.  

I am confused by the teacher's calling him irrelevant.  Not necessary to the class?  I think you give too much detail, the gagging, the holding it back, etc.  

Line 14 - He didn't though, like the ones in the class.  He didn't what, though?  Or do you mean, "He didn't like the ones in the class.

I am not getting how this is getting such high rates and comments, as it seems very unfinished to me, like a building with only the posts to mark it, no rooms yet.  It needs quite a bit of cutting to be taken seriously, that's what I think.  I don't find that you've battened down your point well yet, you just seem to go on, disconnected sentences.

Can you make it more coherent and whole?  I won't enjoy the idea any better but as a poem, it can be made better.  
 — Isabelle5

yes, i should always work on condensing a work. but this one, i can't quite do that. the sloppiness that you point out was supposed to represent sloppiness in human flaw and judgment. that doesn't mean i won't try to cut, it is just that this one almost warrants a horribly told story.

originally, this little pudge was his little pudge. but i changed it to fit grammatical usage, as a definition for pudge is a fat person, and that isn't correct to say his; however, pudge can of course still represent fat, and that's why i am thinking about changing that back to its original wording.

you are right about line four; maybe the best way to fix that is to change told to said. line six and seven though were murky on purpose; it represents letting gas go as well as people; if you look at it as a metaphor, as in there are a certain amount of people that actually try to like him but with each gas release, another person loses hope. i hope that makes sense, i know what you mean about that awkward phrasing. i will think on that.

as far as too much detail in stanza four, you are right, but the quality in the hatred needed to be revealed. line fourteen is unclear, but on purpose, as you just diagnosed a possible meaning. but, it does make some sense as far as some sense may go; all i'm saying is, he didn't keep his composure, and neither did the ones in the room. once again, sloppy wording told for the sloppy representation.

as far as people liking it, i won't deny that i am pleased some gave this a chance. your reasons are easily validated, Isabelle, and i will see what i can fix. the problem is the delicate side of this poem almost hinders any kind of tinkering, and that also means i am being too defensive over it. but i hope i cleared up a few things. thanks for giving it a timid chance, even with all of the disgust you found with it; and i'm not rejecting your words, either. i appreciate what you said.

Fractalcore, thank you.
 — listen

I find this a curious poem. I wonder what caused you to fix on this theme. I sometimes wonder where ideas come from and how a fleeting thought or fragment captures our imagination such that we feel the urge to develop it into something more.

The first 18 lines need some work I think. The voice is unclear.
Line 19 to the end work a lot better for me in which you focus more on the thoughts of "little pudge". There is poignancy here which rings true (line 25, line 34) - we see more to him than others are able.

The first part of the poem seems to be less sure of itself. The perspective keeps shifting in an unclear way. If you're going to start in the 3rd person then it seems odd in the second half to become omnisicient, when we begin to gain insights into the protagonist's thoughts and feelings.

I think you need to decide whose perspective you're writing from and stick with it. Worth working on though.
 — smugzy

by pointing out the shifts you helped show me that the sloppy aspect here may have gone too far. i'll see what i can rework as far as consistency. you've left a great comment, Smugzy. thank you.
 — listen

My pleasure - I'm glad it was helpful!
 — smugzy

i gave a false 10 to isabelle because she is a hypocrite but a give you a genuine 10 you are her antithesis you are a poet.
 — unknown

thanks Unknown. i appreciate your compliment.
 — listen

listen-
you have a unique way of telling real life stories in your poems
and this is a shining example
good write...
 — JKWeb

thanks JK. it means a lot when you stop by.

i like the narrative poem forms. while they have the easiest potential to fall short compared to official poetry, i at least try to use them to convey something that's real.

also, Cubbzor, appreciate the favorite.
 — listen

You definitely have a gift for story telling via prose. Excellent! 10
 — Redlander

Redlander your comments are friendly.

thanks.
 — listen

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