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Lady Mary of Shepherds

by carbonCore


I saw I could no longer see.
My eyes sank deep like heavy hearts,
and through the fog I saw a mount,
whose peak had veiled itself in clouds.

I thought I could no longer hear,
but soon I knew of noteless sounds
that lay like faults in snowy banks --
I would not dare disturb their peace.

One by one, the strings detached,
I swore I could no longer feel.
I touched my hair but it was trees,
I touched my face but grabbed a cliff.

How wrong it is for cliffs to move,
how vile it is of them to think.
I rest my hands, I close my eyes,
a thousand suns then fall and rise.

Another dawn begins to crack.
Another cloud rests on my peak.
I care for none and none I seek,
Yet by my feet I see a track.

She climbs the cliffs, I feel her hands,
her footprints scar eternal snow.
Her voice rings through these solemn lands,
upsets the snow-faults high and low.

I saw, I knew, I know, I see
that if she reached the top of me
there would be sound, there would be light,
the mount would part like eyelids might.

O Sweet Lady, come to me!
Let me hear and let me see.
I am flesh and I am bone,
you alone know I'm not stone.


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Mon Mar 25, 2013 10:29 am
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inkwell wrote a review...



I apologize in advance there doesn't seem to be a full reply option, or edit button for these, so if I type errors, you know why. :p

I like your poem carbon! It uses the tools of poetry, strives for formal effects, and doesn't hide itself too much. The imagery is definitely a key strength here. I want to voice some thoughts/criticisms other than what's been contributed, that may inspire you to write in more challenging ways, and ways that make the reader think differently too. I feel as though the concepts are refined and fascinating, yet the writing is still raw. But know that I like this piece!

I saw I could no longer see.
 My eyes sank deep like heavy hearts,
and through the fog I saw a mount,
whose peak had veiled itself in clouds.


This opening line starts the poem off weakly in my opinion, due to the fact that it's a non-statment with zero context to give it impact or humor or anything. It doesn't invite us into the poem. Unless of course you are expressing a dream-like state, which works for this poem, but I don't get that vibe. Instead it feels like I'm being shut out and made disinterested right off the bat. First impressions are everything!

Then you talk about how your eyes are hearts and it's too many organs in one simile for me (two is all it takes). And of course you're seeing again by the third line and I feel like this stanza has veiled itself in clouds.



I thought I could no longer hear,
 but soon I knew of noteless sounds
that lay like faults in snowy banks --
I would not dare disturb their peace.


This stanza is the first in my opinion. The thought of deafness/numbness disproved by the this soft audio-visual experience... it connected. But breaking into "I would not dare disturb the peace." disturbs the peace. 



One by one, the strings detached,
I swore I could no longer feel.
I touched my hair but it was trees,
I touched my face but grabbed a cliff.




"How wrong it is for cliffs to move," This line intrigues me. It's well written and has such interesting content, stating something so matter of fact yet extraordinary. How queer indeed, your own being is subsumed by its geography, and the response so nonchalant.

how vile it is of them to think.
I rest my hands, I close my eyes,
a thousand suns then fall and rise.


Here we have the issue Karzkin brought up (rhyme). But this has potential. After these rather trippy last couple stanzas, the subject closes their eyes and the line "a thousands suns then fall and rise" could have such a vertigo effect. Yet it sounds like some bland mantra, spice it up! It's a multitude of swirling, celestial, nuclear bombs harnessed by gravity! Give it motion!


Another dawn begins to crack.
Another cloud rests on my peak.
I care for none and none I seek,
Yet by my feet I see a track.

She climbs the cliffs, I feel her hands,
her footprints scar eternal snow.
Her voice rings through these solemn lands,
upsets the snow-faults high and low.


"scar eternal snow" sounds a bit forced.



I saw, I knew, I know, I see
that if she reached the top of me
there would be sound, there would be light,
the mount would part like eyelids might.

O Sweet Lady, come to me!
Let me hear and let me see.
I am flesh and I am bone,
you alone know I'm not stone.


I'm fond of the ending. Lady Mary leaving a track, climbing you and stirring things up until you awake fully human, not "stone" which puts it so strongly. Is this poem about a Catholic meditation on Mary? The sense of structure here certainly can do favors for the spiritual elements.

Overall the weakness in this poem is the excessive use of body language and I mean that literally. Too much feet and eyes and the mount would part like eyelids (i thought the eyelids were a mountain?). I would suggest finding more communicative ways of talking about the body, or altogether talking about it less. Because as Karzkin pointed out, less can be more. But not to worry, we all have trouble with that part. By the way, I wrote this review a little quick from the hip, if anything strikes you PM me and we can develop it further. :)




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Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:13 pm
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Karzkin wrote a review...



Hello cC. Here, as promised.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but forays into poetry seem to be rare for you. I cannot even recall your last one.

I'm a bit torn by this one. On the one hand you have some ripper imagery, especially the first and second stanzas, coherency, and a good sense of development and pacing. On the other hand it's crying out for editing. While I do appreciate the rhythmic element, and the gradual introduction of rhyme, this is one of the (many) examples of form taking precedence over function. For example:

One by one, the strings detached,
I swore I could no longer feel.
I touched my hair but it was trees,
I touched my face but grabbed a cliff.

How wrong it is for cliffs to move,
how vile it is of them to think.
I rest my hands, I close my eyes,
a thousand suns then fall and rise.

Another dawn begins to crack.
Another cloud rests on my peak.

I care for none and none I seek,
Yet by my feet I see a track.


Lots of this can (and should) be culled. The struck-out sections have no function other than to prop up the rhythmic scheme. Including them is inefficient, and efficiency of language is one of the key essences of poetry. It is for this reason that rhyming poetry has fallen out of favour in the last century or so - to write a poem that both conforms to a rhyme/rhythm scheme and is effective in delivering content is exceedingly difficult. Do edit this piece accordingly is beyond my skill. Perhaps write a free-verse version with emphasis on content, and compare the differences.

Finally, the title mystifies me a little. My first thought was the 19th century Scottish philosopher of the same name, but I'm not hip enough to her work to make the connection.

With love,

K.




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Fri Mar 22, 2013 1:49 pm
Caesar wrote a review...



Hey dawg.

I might not have mentioned to you before, but I like this. The message delivered in the last stanza is very clear. My favorite is the sixth, though.

I don't really usually read, write, nor approve of similar messages, but this was well-written.

The way how the narrator is describing the mountain and then suddenly is the mountain is also quite interesting. Reminds me of Ovid for some reason (though, yeah, completely different things). I dunno. It's gradual but sudden. However, I don't understand the verse about the strings. I thought we were going with mountains, mehn. Strings just seems thrown out there for the sake of it. Correct me if I'm wrong.

I also disagree with your use of mount instead of mountain. It seems less euphonic for some reason. It also makes me think of a large pack animal instead of imposing peaks.

Just reflections.
~Ita




LouisCypher says...


I feel like a poetry no0b



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Thu Mar 21, 2013 4:27 pm
BiancaLU says...



Hi there, CarbonCore. :)

This poem is amazing. I especially liked the way you mixed things up. Sounds complex and it's catching. Great work! Keep it up.

-Bianca





Act in the valley so that you need not fear those who stand on the hill.
— Danish proverb