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The Gardener

by Rydia


#19 The Gardener

There are days,
when you can't tell the gardener
where to plant his seeds,
and he sows in arduous rows
but forgets
to fill in the corners.

Sometimes you see them, benchmarked,
but it isn't your fault
that someone gave Isolde
too many pages.

And you try to read the books,
but they're dipped in Greek,
the verdigris of copper
suffocating on air
and you can't keep the string straight
when there are too many filaments.

There are days when melancholy
builds up in the corner like malchite
until you don't know your left
from your left. 


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Sun May 26, 2013 8:15 am
Juniper wrote a review...



Hallo, June here,

I believe i will forever be an appreciator of your poetry.

To begin:

and he sews in arduous rows


I think sews should be sows, because it's in relation to planting, and one sows a seed, not stitches it. ;)

Also,
There are days when melanchite
builds up in the corner like malacholy


I don't mean to go all nitpicky, but I think malacholy should be melancholy? Otherwise, it's just a word I'm unfamiliar with.

I'm not a terrible fan of you beginning both middle stanzas with the word "then", as it makes the poem feel like it's being pressed forward, as opposed to naturally flowing. Otherwise, the third stanza is my favorite -- "dipped in Greek" is an exceptional line. On the whole, I appreciate this poem and would love to continuously see more from you.

Best,
June




Rydia says...


Where have you been all my life <3 Thanks for the feedback, June! Good catch on the then making those two stanzas heavier, I think I'll take it out of the first.



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Sun May 26, 2013 2:08 am
wordsandwishes wrote a review...



I have to say, this is one of my favourite types of poems; It's filled with layers of meanings hidden under other meanings and I find it just, well, beautiful. I also prefer to review these by stanza and/or line so that I don't miss too many of them.

So, without further ado:

There are days
when you can't tell the gardener
where to plant his seeds
and he sews in arduous rows
but forgets
to fill in the corners.


I love the imagery used in this stanza, and I found the metaphorical meaning to be something along the lines of letting go. For instance, if the farmer was child being given a responsibility for the first time and they do all that they can, but they make a mistake. The parent or teacher must refrain from helping to give them experience for the real world and... oh gosh, I'm rambling; Sorry about that...
Um, anyway, the stanza was good as far as spelling, grammar, and conventions go. I understand that punctuation is more of an artistic aspect in poetry, and the classic rules don't apply, but I would suggest that you add a comma at the end of either the 3rd or 5th lines. Just a suggestion though.

Moving on:

Then you see them, benchmarked,
but it isn't your fault
that someone gave Isolde
too many pages.


Again, no technical or nitpicky errors to make note of.
I really like the way this stanza gives this piece more.... character, I guess I could say. It continues it with the same story, but it jumps foreword in time, like the first two stanzas are snap shots.
Then we have the 3rd stanza:

Then you try to read the books,
but they're dipped in Greek,
the verdigris of copper
suffocating on air
and you can't keep the string straight
when there are too many filaments.


This stanza does an amazing job at capturing the reader, by weaving them into the piece itself, as the 2nd stanza'd begun to do so. I have to say I love the imagery in this one the best. It feels to me in this one like the reader (in the poem) is struggling with something, and the emotion of frustration was placed in so very subtly and elegantly, and I find it amazing how poets can do that.
(This stanza is also, again, nitpick free.)
And then there's the finally:

There are days when melanchite
builds up in the corner like malacholy
until you don't know your left
from your left.


I really love this stanza, but there are a few spelling mistakes:

Melanchite should be Malachite

And malacholy should be melancholy.

Now I'm not sure whether or not these were intentional, or if I fixed them correctly, but I like what you're saying in this conclusion.

Other than that, it was flawless, and I loved it.^^

Keep writing!

w&w




Rydia says...


Thank you so much for your feedback and kind words! The spelling mistakes were intentional, but perhaps aren't working out. I'll have to have another think about it, though I'm glad you're able to pick out which two words I was fusing together.

Thanks again!



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Sun May 26, 2013 1:31 am
StoneHeart wrote a review...



Hey Rydia, Black here for a quick Review Day Review.

First off: Nice piece here. You have very good, powerful wording – interesting too if I may say – and a really good way of hinting to your theme, hidden in the background as it is. If you have any problem its in that your words are a little bit too interesting.

Let me show you what I mean: According to my 'ahem' Standard Dictionary, lying faithfully before me, there is no such word as 'benchmarked' – which you use here:

Then you see them, benchmarked,

or melanchite – which you use here:
There are days when melanchite

or malacholy – which you use here:
builds up in the corner like malacholy


I do believe that you mean 'bench-marked' and not 'benchmarked'. However with the other two I'm not quite sure what to say. I could assume that you might mean 'melancholy' instead of 'malacholy' and 'Malachite' instead of 'melanchite', however poets invent words so much that I think I'll have to survive with just pointing them out to you and seeing in your actions whether or not my assumptions are correct.

where to plant his seeds
and he sews in arduous rows

Okay. Sews is technically correct, however I think it would be more to your point of you used 'sows'. I'll also add, feeling safe after looking up and down a bit, that you should probably use a comma after 'seeds'.

suffocating on air
and you can't keep the string straight

I think you want a comma after 'air'. I'm presently curious as to what 'Isolde' is.

I'll also mention real quick right here that this piece ends rather abruptly. If that was intentional then great, if not then you'll want to look into it.

Now I am no good at poetry, I prefer to keep to novels and articles. Because of this I can't really pin down exactly what you're trying to say. I'm pretty sure that you're not generalizing TOO much with this poem, but I can't be sure. I think you're applying it to more . . . personal situations. Anyway though, it was interesting, your wording was a bit odd, but most of it was very powerful - and good.

Keep writing.

~Black~




Rydia says...


Yes, I play with words perhaps a little too much in this one. Benchmarked is a rogue phrase that someone attempted to coin a while ago but it didn't take on and malanchite and malacholy are the two words fused together: melancholy and malachite. I was trying to reflect the theme of the stanza that some days things get muddled together and it's difficult to tell which is which.

It might be one to think on some more though.

Again, playing with words with sews. I figured if I put sows then nobody would see the double meaning?

Isolde is a literary reference - Tristan and Isolde. It's very much worth a read :)

Thanks for the feedback Black!





Hrm. No problem.




You wanna be a writer? You don't know how or when? Find a quiet place, use a humble pen.
— Paul Simon