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benevolence

by lukekazey


we find gods benevolence

in the shadow of her spires,

in the cobbles streets below

marked and worn by the feet

of a thousand weary souls.

we find gods benevolence

in manicured lawns

maintained under her gaze

and softly trampled under

toddlers toes.

we find gods benevolence 

in digital photographs

uploaded with sepia tones

and sage green benches

carved with sketches.

we find gods benevolence

in redstone brick walls

and eye sockets hewn 

from rock staring solidly

upon our fleshy forms.

we find gods benevolence

in fingers interlocked

and voices overlapping,

in compede plasters

and orange berets.

we find gods benevolence 

in moments like these

and we thank her for it.


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Fri Sep 17, 2021 10:45 pm
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Que wrote a review...



Hi there, lukekazey!

Que here to review your poem today. :) Feel free to take any advice that is helpful and leave whatever is not!

Okay so some opening thoughts: I wasn't sure if you wanted stanza breaks in your poem? It feels as if it naturally divides into stanzas wherever the repeated lines occur. If you want to add these in, one way is to go to the "</>" section while editing your work. In the space between two stanzas where you want to include a section break, type in <br> and then </br>. I believe that there are also other ways to do formatting, and if you're interested I could track those down for you!

I think that including an apostrophe in "gods" so that it's "god's" might be helpful. As it is, "gods" is a little ambiguous as to whether it's one without an apostrophe, or possibly multiple. But, since you routinely use a single pronoun throughout, it seems as if it wants to be singular and possessive, so that might be helpful to include so that readers don't stumble over it. If you want to preserve the ambiguity, maybe they/them pronouns would help to convey that more. But I do find it really interesting that you've used she/her throughout! I think that challenges a lot of the typical perceptions of a god or God, and it's cool how naturally it fits in your poem here.

we find gods benevolence
in the shadow of her spires,
in the cobbles streets below
marked and worn by the feet
of a thousand weary souls.

I thought it was really interesting that you started off with a very traditional image of religion: it gives off old European vibes with the cobble streets and perhaps cathedral spires and weary souls. One little thing here is that I think it should be "cobbled streets"? Just a little grammar thing.

we find gods benevolence
in manicured lawns
maintained under her gaze
and softly trampled under
toddlers toes.

I think of all the sections of this poem, this was the one I found hardest to connect to the idea of benevolence. I liked the sharp shift from old cathedral scenes to more modern, home-centered scene. Maybe the contrast here is what's getting to me--I think "manicured" and "maintained" work together to give off a little bit of a negative connotation and feeling of being uptight and regulated, while "softly trampled under / toddlers toes" is almost the opposite, the breach of regulations, more freedom and gentleness. (And again, you might consider an apostrophe with "toddlers"!)

we find gods benevolence
in digital photographs
uploaded with sepia tones
and sage green benches
carved with sketches.

Again, I see you playing with contrasts here! The very modern sense of "digital photographs / uploaded" is much different than the "sepia tones" and "sage green benches / carved with sketches". The best conclusion that I can draw from this is that benevolence can be either of these things, old or new, and that it can be found in any place, but if this is the case you might want to push that theme a little more strongly. Currently, your repetition of "we find gods benevolence" is making readers seek unity in the poem; you can use that to your advantage to tie together even more different ideas. Any other linking images might be helpful as well!

we find gods benevolence
in redstone brick walls
and eye sockets hewn
from rock staring solidly
upon our fleshy forms.
we find gods benevolence
in fingers interlocked
and voices overlapping,
in compede plasters
and orange berets.

I put these two sections together because I think they were some of the most abstract and disconnected for me. We go from "brick walls" to "eye sockets hewn / from rock," and there's some kind of play going on between bodies and rocks, but it leaves me a little lost. It's less of a clear image than photographs and graffitied benches.

In the second part, I absolutely love the lines "in fingers interlocked / and voices overlapping". This to me conveyed a sort of classic sense of finding benevolence in human relationships, whether romantic or familial or friendly--there's a sense of comfort in sharing here, and that is very easy to believe as "benevolence". Then "orange berets" seems almost like an insider image or information that the reader can't connect to anything else, and I think "compede plasters" just threw me off entirely because I have no idea what that is.

we find gods benevolence
in moments like these
and we thank her for it.

I do really love your closing lines! I think it does some good work in helping to tie all of your images together. They do seem to me more like images than moments, though, mostly because the readers are outside of these moments, so they're more like snapshots than experiences.

I like how tight and specific all your images are in this poem, I just wish as a reader that I could make a little more sense of them. As a poet, you absolutely do not have to tell readers everything or anything, but it might be helpful to have a little more cohesion than just the idea of "benevolence" to tie things together throughout. I think that one way you could do this is by either emphasizing the contrasts you have going on or else toning them down a little, and any way that you could tie one set of images to the next would be very helpful as well. I think also the assertion of "we find" is what makes it harder to group these different experiences -- if it was something like "we can find" (not saying that should be your line though, I love it as is!) it might make a little more sense in the idea that these are all possibilities for benevolence rather than the solid thing itself.

Anyway, I think you did a really nice job with this poem! The structure especially is very well done. It also feels different from a lot of poems that I've read and I really liked that. :) I hope some of my comments were helpful, have a great day and happy writing!

-Q




lukekazey says...


Thank you so much for your review! I wrote this poem sat in the shadow of York Cathedral, while on a break with my friends. It's very much personal and has insider references. Compede plasters are like Band-Aids that you put on blisters, probably a very British reference. Thank you for the formatting, it was formatted originally bit posted without it. But thank you for your critiques, they'll definitely be considered



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Fri Sep 17, 2021 5:06 am
pragyarchana says...



Hey, This poem found my attention due to the beautiful use of "her" with reference to God. Moreover, the message this work conveys takes us into a natural, spiritual world where kindness exists.




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Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:10 pm
vampricone6783 says...



Lovely poem.I love it the message that you are giving us,that maybe the god (or gods) are showing kindness to us by giving us the simplest things in life,like trees or a brick house.It’s the small moments that we should cherish,the ones we often forget about.My favorite lines were:”We find gods benevolence in moments like these and we thank her for it.” These lines tell us that we shouldn’t forget about the little things.Good Job!




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32 Reviews


Points: 109
Reviews: 32

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Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:10 pm
vampricone6783 wrote a review...



Lovely poem.I love it the message that you are giving us,that maybe the god (or gods) are showing kindness to us by giving us the simplest things in life,like trees or a brick house.It’s the small moments that we should cherish,the ones we often forget about.My favorite lines were:”We find gods benevolence in moments like these and we thank her for it.” These lines tell us that we shouldn’t forget about the little things.Good Job!





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