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Icarus

by Kaylaa


Together we sat on that makeshift swingset
composed of rusted chains, wooden boards,
and rope that gave our hands telltale calluses.

Our palms were left raw,
throbbing from the familiar ache.

Together, we faced oblivion as we swung
our legs back and forth as hard as we could,
stuck in constant limbo.

Our shadows stretched across the lawn most
at dusk, the sun retreating from the leaden sky.
If we had the technology, I am certain that you
would have been just like Icarus, ropes singed 
and snapped over your shoulders, just like that.

That's so like you. Crashing down from the heavens
in an attempt to get higher than high, you felt divine--
that sure lasted long. A foreshadowing of what would
later come: bloody knees, gravel piercing into your hands,
and a mistake you swore off for the rest of your days.

Author's Note:
 A couple of questions for those who review the piece!

1.) Do you think the structure feels a little off to you?
2.) Does the flow run smoothly, or does it need some work?
3.) Is the brevity in imagery effective in this piece? 

Thanks! 


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6 Reviews


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Sat May 13, 2017 6:32 pm
Aritra wrote a review...



May 9, 2017 Poetry: Realistic, General 5 comments (5 reviews)
Together we sat on that makeshift swingset
composed of rusted chains, wooden boards,
and rope that gave our hands telltale calluses.

Our palms were left raw,
throbbing from the familiar ache.
Together, we faced oblivion as we swung
our legs back and forth as hard as we could,
stuck in constant limbo.

Our shadows stretched across the lawn most
at dusk, the sun retreating from the leaden sky.
If we had the technology, I am certain that you
would have been just like Icarus, ropes singed
and snapped over your shoulders, just like that.

That's so like you. Crashing down from the heavens
in an attempt to get higher than high, you felt divine--
that sure lasted long. A foreshadowing of what would
later come: bloody knees, gravel piercing into your hands,
and a mistake you swore off for the rest of your days.

Author's Note: A couple of questions for those who review the piece!
1.) Do you think the structure feels a little off to you?
2.) Does the flow run smoothly, or does it need some work?
3.) Is the brevity in imagery effective in this piece?

Thanks!
The flow of the poem is very nice, you need not to worry about that. The brevity is good but it can be better. I am not sure about the structure, so I won't comment on that.
Thanks,




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Thu May 11, 2017 5:52 pm
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ExOmelas wrote a review...



Hey, I think I mentioned to you that I'm still getting practice at poetry reviews, so if you get the chance could you give me some feedback on this feedback?

I think I'm going to start with flow, because that's most like nit-picks, which is how I do prose reviews :P

Our palms were left raw

Have you considered removing "left" so that there's more emphasis on "raw"? This would give raw more power, which would make it sound more, well, raw. You know like just sort of pure and powerful?

Together, we faced oblivion as we swung
our legs back and forth as hard as we could,

I think this is fine but I'd have written it with "our legs" on the end of the first of these two lines. The image of the second line is very strong, but for me at least it's more about the concept of going back and forth. It's useful to be able to picture the legs doing so, so obviously don't take that out, but I think if you did it that way round I'd have that picture in my head and the second line would have more potency. The third line in that stanza is lovely.

Our shadows stretched across the lawn most

I'm not really clear on the purpose of "most" here. Highlighting this time implies that this is when it is most prominent anyway.

If we had the technology, I am certain that you

I want to emphasise that I don't necessarily think you should change this bit at all, but I don't know what it's implying. That can be good though, if you want the reader to think about it, as I am currently doing. A lot of the joy of reading poetry can be putting your own experiences into it and creating meaning. But if you do mean it to clear you should probably be aware that I can see multiple interpretations. Right now I'm thinking like that this was at a time before smartphones but that if they had existed this person would have been someone who messaged your speaker constantly and began to become a pain.

The imagery in the final stanza is excellent. I can really imagine the countless times I've fallen off a swing and it's resulted in exactly that. I can also really, really put the images of Icarus and a swing together. There's always that temptation to try and swing over the bar, but of course you're going to fall off, extremely similar to Icarus. I can even picture a sun in the background as the person swings, getting higher and higher into the sky towards it.

Okay, so that's me actually dealt with imagery as well I guess. Although I'm not sure what you mean by brevity in imagery. The little flashes I get here and there are executed well if that's what you mean.

I think the structure is fine. If it's a memory that's running through your speaker's head, it makes sense for it not to come in rigid rhyme and metre. It's memory... it flows.

I think that's pretty much everything from me. Hope this helps,
Biscuits :)




Kaylaa says...


Thanks for the review! <3 Lovely and helpful--so glad you left one. You definitely helped, so thanks.



ExOmelas says...


Awesome :)



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Wed May 10, 2017 1:57 pm
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CaptainJack wrote a review...



Good morning darling. Meant to do this quite a bit earlier but then I forgot and as you see, other reviews happened. (Then you popped by my thread.) And without a further ado, it is now time to get this show on the road.

Image


2. To me, periods in the middle of the lines always seem to disrupt the flow because you're stopping too early on, even though the thought is complete. And perhaps if the entire poem had been set up in the middle of the line fashion, the flow wouldn't have been so messed up when you started using them in the last stanza. This hit me like half a ton of bricks because the other half had hit me at a different point of the poem.
You were doing so well.
This last stanza also seemed to rush things along a bit which I guess is to be associated with how quickly Icarus went down after flying too close to the sun. Still it hurts to read the difference after such a slow buildup and then bam, gone. (Which is legit the legend so maybe I shouldn't have such negative feelings about this.)

1. When you're trying to satisfy a certain line length for structure, it always leads to some distaste because you're either drawing something out too far or cutting it off too soon. For the most part this fit pretty well and all of the ideas mixed well together and I was basically chill with the entirety of the thing.
But then stanza 3 hit me and the murders began.
The murders of my emotions about line lengths and not letting things stray too far from the pack. The 'in limbo' line is strangely fitting for the length of the line and I have a lot of better jokes to make but I'm not going to use any of them at this time. So maybe I'm just going to take the line ending in the middle as the fact of being in limbo is being in the middle. Doubtful that you thought that far into the formatting but that's just the way I'll think about it, don't crush my dreams man.

3. The imagery is there but it's also not, kind of just floating in purgatory back there so that's a nice quality. I don't like overdone imagery because to me, that's as bad as having 10 periods and thinking you can count it as an extreme emphasis ellipsis.
..........

Image

But back to business.
Most of the descriptions were of pain which is definitely something I can picture in my mind.
*rolls up pant leg and displays scars*
I mean I liked the level you had and it wasn't over done and I really don't have anything else to say, so I guess I'll just be heading on my way.

Yeah that's it. If you want to talk about the review, you know where to find me on discord.
Good day.
~Lady Lizz




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Tue May 09, 2017 4:02 pm
papillote wrote a review...



Hi, I really liked this poem. So much love and so few illusions...
The imagery was very effective, I think, just colorful enough to hook the reader and just ambiguous enough to really get us thinking.
Now, I don't read a lot of poetry but the rhythm of this piece felt different from what I have seen elsewhere on this forum. I'm not sure if it's simply better or if it's just the tiniest bit off. Maybe the flow isn't exactly right for a poem, it felt more like reading lyrics.
You should try setting it to music.
Sorry. Maybe it's not the most useful review. I was really moved by something in your poem, though, I'm not sure exactly what it is, maybe the tenderness I felt was there.
Thank you very much, Nikayla.




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Tue May 09, 2017 1:38 pm
Thisislegacy wrote a review...



Legacy here for a review. I will start with your questions and then add some input of my own.

1. The structure of this poem is organized by content and it seems to work very well.

2. The flow runs smoothly. You have punctuation where there needs to be punctuation. It works very well as if it was spoken too. (Would actually be interested on hearing how you would speak it).

3. Your use of imagery is immaculate. I can see the tale of Icarus playing out before me as I read this poem.

Now on to my own notes.

I love how you chose this story of Icarus to write a poem about; not very many people attempt, and less are able to write the poem without almost copying the story.

Your use of vocabulary is good, although I don't understand why you used the word "leaden" when talking about the sky. I had to look it up and most people don't have that word in their vocabulary. I would suggest using a word like dark or heavy instead.

Your poem is very good, just a little bit of editing is needed in my opinion for the word leaden. Legacy.




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Tue May 09, 2017 1:03 pm
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VegasLights wrote a review...



Hey, Nikayla! VegasLights here to give you a review!

First, I'm going to answer the questions that you put, and elaborate onto it afterwards. I think the structure is a little off because of Stanza 2. I say this because your other stanzas are at least one to three line longer. But then again, your poem works fine either way. I think the flow runs smoothly, and needs no change. The imagery that you have is very effective and has a clear image.

For the actual poem, I wouldn't change anything. You have a great theme going on and it doesn't change. Like I said before, your imagery is great. You use descriptive words and that helps with the imagery. Sadly, all reviews must come to an end and here is the end of this one. I hope you have a great day and I thank you for your time.

xo. VegasLights
(Previously Steam1244)




Kaylaa says...


Thanks for the review! I'm glad you've been out and about reviewing lately because it's been pleasant to see you grow in your critique. If you ever want tips on that, you're more than welcome to hit me up anytime about it since I see that you're reviewing a lot lately. Thanks for answering the questions I addressed as well, since that'll help in future edits!




Anne felt that life was really not worth living without puffed sleeves.
— L. M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables