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The Bouncy Castle

by MasterGrieves


Arnold arrived sometime midday,
And he expected a town fine-tuned and gay.
Village fetes and parades, perhaps,
But nothing remote and grey.

He was let down.
In for a sordid surprise.
On the outskirts of the town
Were a million circus clowns.

"Come and play with us, and dance the night away!"
They yelped with a goofy demeanour.
Arnold could not have said anything meaner,
When he demanded they went away.

Let's say it was the last straw.
Arnold's mouth was his biggest flaw.

Crucified inside a wooden frame,
The shape of a man but without a brain.
He became engulfed whilst begging for mercy
But His maker enjoyed him writhing in pain.

The flames invaded the night sky,
As did the thought of his charred flesh.
The clowns on the outskirts did laugh but not cry;
"Ha! That city-folk deserved to die!"


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123 Reviews


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Thu Jul 10, 2014 1:05 pm
FatCowsSis wrote a review...



Hello! Sis here to give you a review! Just a warning, I'm going to me more critical than EmeraldEyes was of your poem...

So, you say that this is a precedent to a novel...Okay, well in that case I guess it helps the poem. But since you submitted this as poetry, I'm going to review it like poetry.

Let's start with the first stanza.

Arnold arrived sometime midday,
And he expected a town fine-tuned and gay.

Okay, these first two lines start your rhyme pattern. With midday and gay you began that.
Secondly, you set your rhythm. The rhythm first line was fine to me. The second line was longer, the rhythm more difficult, but I thought, He can make it work...But in the third and fourth lines, it just didn't flow right at all.

He was let down.
In for a sordid surprise.
On the outskirts of the town
Were a million circus clowns.

As I said, you set the rhyme pattern in the first stanza and blew it off here. Either rhyme and keep the pattern, or don't rhyme. Rhythm was better here, but still messed up a little due to rhyme.

"Come and play with us, and dance the night away!"

This sentence messed up the rhythm because it was sooooooo long. Don't get me wrong, long sentences are fine. I like them! I wish I could use them in my poetry! But, this sentence can easily be shortened to something like, "Come, play with us and dance the night away!" And to me, that makes a difference already. Also rhyme.

Let's say it was the last straw.
Arnold's mouth was his biggest flaw.

I see nothing wrong here. This is really beautiful, and probably my favorite part of the poem. Either this or the last stanza.

But His maker enjoyed him writhing in pain.

When you say His, it makes me think that you're referring to Arnold as a god. I think you meant to say, "But his Maker enjoyed him writhing in pain."

Your last stanza is also beautiful.

Overall, I think this would be a great idea for a novel. But you'd obviously have to stretch out the details, add stuff, and make it long enough to be a novel.

Congratulations! Really, I thoroughly enjoyed reading the poem, and I look forward to more!

Keep writing, and as always keep smiling!

-Sis




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Thu Jul 10, 2014 12:41 pm
Hannah wrote a review...



Hmmmm. Well, first of all, introductions are in order! I'm Hannah, and I'm here representing the Knights of the Green Room, and I think I'm going to review a couple more of your poems after this one, so I thought we'd get to know one another.

I dunno if it will be just me who had this impression, but the first stanza of this poem made me think it was going to be much more serious than it turned out to be. For example, starting with a person's name made me feel like the poem would be really personal and intimate, letting me into the thoughts and subtle poetry of a man's life. Paired with vague but real language like "sometime midday", it seemed like that's what you were setting me up for. Did you want to pull that kind of trick on your readers?

The next thought that hit me was that although your meter, rhythm, and rhyme were perfect and easy to follow in the first stanza, they got a little messed up in the rest of the poem. Just for a quick example of what to look for if you care to check through...

The first stanza kind of fits with a set rhythm, but the next goes all over the place.

He was let down. ba ba DUM DUM
In for a sordid surprise. DUM ba ba DUMba baDUM
On the outskirts of the town ba ba DUMba ba ba DUM
Were a million circus clowns. ba ba DUMba DUMba DUM

Try reading just the stress and you'll see it's hard to get into a rhythm with words all over the place like that. You want something that feels constant, like riding a horse, to get your readers moving along smoothly with you.

It also kind of felt like you let the rhyme run away with the poem. What I mean is that instead of just naturally telling the story with the words you'd naturally choose, you were forced to make awkward sentences for the sake of rhyming. For example:

They yelped with a goofy demeanour.
Arnold could not have said anything meaner,


What? Who would describe somebody as having a goofy demeanor? That feels very awkward, not at all genuine. Or see the second to last line where you say "did laugh but not cry". Would you ever use that describing something simply in prose? No way! It sticks out -- something you have to try to avoid if you're going to write in rhyme.

So here are my suggestions -- what if you wrote this without rhyme? What would it look like then? I'm not saying delete this poem and write a new one, but just write a new one to be the companion of this original version and see which one you like best and why!

Hopefully my thoughts are helpful to you!

PM me or reply to this review if you have any questions.
Good luck and keep writing!

Hannah




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Thu Jul 10, 2014 9:11 am
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EmeraldEyes wrote a review...



Hi.

So you put a novel idea into a poem format. OK. :)

Arnold is obviously your protagonist:

Arnold arrived sometime midday,
and you introduce him and the setting straight away. Which is nice.
The setting was clearly not what he expected it to be:
He was let down.
In for a sordid surprise.
which hints at the potential genre for this piece.
This work itself sounds like it has been written with a childlike tone in a certain way, this stanza in particular:
"Come and play with us, and dance the night away!"
They yelped with a goofy demeanour.
It's intriguing though.
The second line of this mini-stanza made me LOL.
Let's say it was the last straw.
Arnold's mouth was his biggest flaw.

You can tell what the writer means but at the same time it was funny. XD

I don't think you like writing anything light and frothy, do you? Hee hee
He became engulfed whilst begging for mercy
But His maker enjoyed him writhing in pain.
Ah well. Still enjoyable I guess, watching people get killed and all that.

So obviously this guy is a little bit mental:
The clowns on the outskirts did laugh but not cry;
"Ha! That city-folk deserved to die!"

I am sure it would make for an interesting book. Written by the next Stephen Kind -points at you-

Keep writing hun. ♥





I'm effortlessly ironic.
— Link Neal