Friday, May 22, 2009

A Picture of Our Torn Up Praise

We embrace

The fire of your red heart beating

With the fervor of a thousand horses.

With hands held tightly,

Our grip begins to break.

So tender, so awkward,

Our lips inches to infinity.

The distance taking it’s tole,

A heart jaded by autumns morning frost.

A black tie, a red dress.

The hollowed out shells of what was once a man,

Once a women.

A photograph in my mind,

The only thing to remind me of what once was

Is now a boxcar turned sideways,

Destroyed, meaningless.

Jackson Pollock bellows,

His perfect picture returned,

All that’s left is the distance...

A picture of our torn up praise.


Caitlyn said...

I like the imagery you use. I was really intrigued with the first couple of lines and had to finish the poem. I think the last stanza is my favorite. I love the reference to Jackson Pollock because he just seems to be the perfect artist for this painting/ poem. I liked the way I was left thinking about it after. I think when a poem has me interested and thinking I remember it and want to read it again and again.

sallylynn said...

John ~

You do a really nice job with many things in this poem. The repetition and parallel structure of many of the lines ("so tender, so awkward," "a black tie, a red dress," "once a man, once a woman") creates a strong rhythm throughout, which propels a reader through the poem. Ending, then, on a single line without that duality or doubled image works really well to startle the reader, to provide a furthered sense of incompleteness. You do nice work here, too, with sound -- "inch to infinity," "break, awkward," "fire, fervor." These sounds work to reinforce one another and so highlight the words as ones that we should pay attention to.

Keep working on developing the imagery further -- see what you can do with those horses, for example. Are they sweating, frothing at the mouth, switching their tails, etc.? Also, look at some of the words to make sure that you've got the spelling you want -- if it's just one "woman" or many women, etc. That'll make the poem stronger, too.

Great work here, John -- some terrific lines carry this poem through and provide a sense of sorrow and some lingering mystery.