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Thread: How To See Glass

  1. #1
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    How To See Glass

    Songs brighten the deep clear water.
    A voice adds luxury to the clouded sky.
    Who do I hear imagining rain?
    Sing louder and I will find you.

    Rising winds tumble against me.
    The drifting moods of heaven
    have already passed through
    many seasons. Bad luck.

    I drunkenly tilt towards memories.
    The last one lingers and I dip
    my finger in and taste it. Sunrise
    is warm against cold flesh.

  2. #2
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    Line 3 is the only baffling one in this. How can imagined rain be heard? Is that like zen, the sound of one hand clapping?

  3. #3
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    Imaginative, imagistic, impressionistic... this has all the hallmarks of a Lykren poem alright.

    I'm put in mind of Wallace Stevens's 'The Idea of Order at Key West' - 'She sang beyond the genius of the sea' and all that. Perhaps that gives us an indication of what is being suggested in line 3. And if it's not a human singer as Stevens imagined, it could be the sound of nature imitating nature - the sound of the 'deep clear water' could be running over rocks or could be a waterfall producing a sound as if it were 'imagining rain'.

    I enjoyed the longer second sentence of the second stanza for its imagery and flowing rhythm, which seems more in keeping with the poem than the first stanza's stop-start single line rhythm. What to make of why that's 'bad luck' I'm not so sure; because of the effects of time passing?

    I'm not too keen on the adverb 'drunkenly' (line 9), nor for the last stanza as a whole if I'm honest. It just seems a bit inconsequential. Ok, the narrator is 'tasting' his memories, but why, and what that tells us remain rather unclear. And what to make of how all the poem helps us 'to see glass'? Hmm. Is the glass the water? But then, more is made of it being heard rather than seen, so again it's ambiguous.

    This might seem uncharitable, but the poem does start to read a bit like a writing exercise by the end, as four out of the five senses are present, something all good 'how to write poetry' books tell us amateur writers we must include.

    But as always, the strengths of your poetry outweigh any quibbles. A pleasure to read.

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