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PostPosted: 12 Nov 2017, 03:53 
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Joined: 19 Sep 2017, 09:10
Posts: 98
Location: Argentina
Reverie

I exist as dubious matter:
perhaps bacteria in the guts of a volcano,
Bacillus infernus generating sulphur and iron.
Or else, unknown to scientific paradigms,
I’m a stubborn microbe colonizing
under-bellies of continental ice caps.
Last night I dreamed that I scurried
through oil-ducts dented by rust,
and again, that I fed on copper
in cables crisscrossing urban skies.

I’m infinitely small,
spied under the microscope
of an obscure apprentice,
conjectured in biochemical formulas.
An elusive thing,
a wiggle in viscera of throbbing bodies,
suspected, not proven.

No poem evokes me,
no passion exalts me,
no melodies sing in my ears.
Perhaps I exist in bondage to the wind,
on dunes of distant deserts;
or in breezes, tracing patterns under cold moons,
reverting to flatness and silence.

I’m neither a memory of past spirits,
nor illusion, nor fantasy of a living soul.
I’m a specter in your looking-glass.
Time refuses to multiply me
in infinite Borgesean mirrors.
I can’t duplicate myself.

I'm just a chink in some mirror.

Bariloche, Argentina, 2017.

Changes: "I'm a specter in your looking-glass" (thank you, Bernie)
"I'm just a chink in some mirror" (me)


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 13 Nov 2017, 16:01 
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Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17
Posts: 582
Looks like everyone is occupied elsewhere Gracy
The last three stanzas of this cone together really well.

I think there's a lot in the poem, and i find the comparisons well done, but a bit overdone.

The connection between the first of the poem and the last three stanzas is difficult (for me) to make


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 13 Nov 2017, 23:51 
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Joined: 19 Sep 2017, 09:10
Posts: 98
Location: Argentina
Thank you, Kenneth.
Yes, it's a bit complicated to connect the issues. I had in mind humanity as a whole. Using the 1st. person can be both a particular situation, as well as a universal concept.
The idea is to show the smallness of human beings' importance in the grand scheme of things.
But maybe that's too big an issue to convey in poetry. I'll mull over it and perhaps withdraw my poem if I come to the conclusion that it's too grandiloquent a theme for me... a chink in the mirror...LOL.
Best, Gracy


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 14 Nov 2017, 05:08 
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Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17
Posts: 582
Gracy I would never withdraw a poem on the basis of one critique. It's your poem.


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 14 Nov 2017, 22:35 
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Joined: 30 Jul 2015, 11:14
Posts: 780
G---


splendid poem, thoughtful and original.

I exist as dubious matter:
perhaps bacteria in the guts of a volcano,
Bacillus infernus generating sulphur and iron.
Or else, unknown to scientific paradigms,
I’m a stubborn microbe colonizing
under-bellies of continental ice caps.
Last night I dreamed that I scurried
through oil-ducts dented by rust,
and again, that I fed on copper
in cables crisscrossing urban skies.



great lines building and maintaining a theme.


the poem does not become monotonous as it shrinks mere humans, wonderful lines like this keep my attention fresh and alert:

I exist in bondage to the wind,
on dunes of distant deserts;
or in breezes, tracing patterns under cold moons,


maybe i break there, resume here:

I’m (REMOVE THE WORD "NOT") a specter in your looking-glass.

I’m probably
just a chink in the mirror.




maybe a new final line, not just the humility of being "small," but a true self label that is both sensitive and personal.

great job.

bernie



From "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T.S. Eliot:

"For I have known them all already, known them all:

Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons;

I have measured out my life with coffee spoons."



From "The Wasteland" by T.S. Eliot:

"These fragments I have shored

Against my ruins."


From "Funeral Blues" by W.H. Auden:

"He was my North, my South , my East and my West

My working week and my Sunday rest

My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;

I thought that love would last forever, I was wrong."





From a review:

Chapter II

Anticipating not only modern scientific theories of psychology but also those of cosmology, this astonishing book sets out a impressive goal for itself: to reconcile human biology with a theory of consciousness. First published in France in 1907, and translated into English in 1911, this work of wonder was esteemed at the time in scientific circles and in the popular culture alike for its profound explorations of perception and memory and its surprising conclusions about the nature and value of art. Contending that intuition is deeper than intellect and that the real consequence of evolution is a mental freedom to grow, to change, to seek and create novelty, Bergson reinvigorated the theory of evolution by refusing to see it as merely mechanistic. His expansion on Darwin remains one of the most original and important philosophical arguments for a scientific inquiry still under fire today.

French philosopher HENRI BERGSON (1859-1941) was born in Paris. Among his works are Matter and Memory (1896), An Introduction to Metaphysics (1903), and The Two Sources of Morality and Religion (1932). He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1927.


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 15 Nov 2017, 10:10 
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Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17
Posts: 582
See? Its perfectly clear to Bernie.


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 16 Nov 2017, 03:45 
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Joined: 21 Sep 2017, 23:23
Posts: 103
Gracy, I am so glad you didn't remove this. It is highly original and well thought out. Kenneth is right, you should never remove after just one reply (or even a lot more, in my opinion)

One place made me wonder

perhaps bacteria in the guts of a volcano,
Bacillus infernus generating sulphur and iron.

I like the use of Latin in poetry (have used it myself sometimes) but I wonder if 'bacillus inferno' is just a repetition of the previous line?

As I say, this is very original writing and different from your Patagonian poems (which I love too)

Great work
Eira


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2017, 11:18 
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Joined: 19 Sep 2017, 09:10
Posts: 98
Location: Argentina
Thank you, Bernie, for your thoughtfulness in commenting on my poem.
I wrote it at a difficult time in my life, then just filed it away.
I've always admired T.S.Eliot, never tired of The Wasteland.

And BTW, I actually wrote my thesis based in large part on Henri Bergon's The Two Sources of Morality and Religion, as well as another about Creation, right now I can't remember the exact title. As I wrote it in Spanish, my memory fails me. I have my thesis in print, somewhere in my piles of typewritten stuff. It's very long and even contains a chapter on the ancient zoroastrian religion, practised in Babylon 500 BCE. And much further back, but there's not so much known about pre-historic beliefs.
I'll see about the final lines when I come back, hope I can do that soon.
Thanks a lot, Gracy


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2017, 11:21 
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Joined: 19 Sep 2017, 09:10
Posts: 98
Location: Argentina
Kenneth2816 wrote:
Gracy I would never withdraw a poem on the basis of one critique. It's your poem.


OK, Ken, I'll remember that. I wasn't going to remove it straight away, but I suppose it sounds as if I did have that in mind.
Best, Gracy


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2017, 11:24 
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Joined: 19 Sep 2017, 09:10
Posts: 98
Location: Argentina
Kenneth2816 wrote:
See? Its perfectly clear to Bernie.


LOL, Bernie seems to understand my poem better than I do myself.
I'll return with a clearer mind, it's almost dawn now!
Gracy


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 Post subject: Re: Reverie
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2017, 11:43 
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Joined: 19 Sep 2017, 09:10
Posts: 98
Location: Argentina
capricorn wrote:
Gracy, I am so glad you didn't remove this. It is highly original and well thought out. Kenneth is right, you should never remove after just one reply (or even a lot more, in my opinion)

One place made me wonder

perhaps bacteria in the guts of a volcano,
Bacillus infernus generating sulphur and iron.

I like the use of Latin in poetry (have used it myself sometimes) but I wonder if 'bacillus inferno' is just a repetition of the previous line?

As I say, this is very original writing and different from your Patagonian poems (which I love too)

Great work
Eira


Eira, you've also made me feel better about my poem!
I'll think about the repetition, maybe you're right. I sometimes do it for emphasis, or as an ongoing thought, because bacteria in volcanos are rather special, or shall I say infernal?
I'm glad you find it original. I find that my Patagonian collection is not well understood and I have to explain too much. Whereas where I live it's perfectly clear. Same happens to me when I read USA or British poetry, I have to google many names/words to get some understanding of them!
BTW, all of Argentina is in turmoil because of the lost submarine with 44 crew members on board. It disappeared fairly near the Patagonian coastline, although I live in the western area, in the foothills of the Andes.
The families are in despair, even ill. Hope of the crew's survival is almost lost. Some cling to hope because the sub has not actually been found. It seems there was an explosion, but the captain said in his last communication that they were all right, heading to their destination with the short circuit fixed. Then
silence.
At least a dozen countries have sent expert help, including a British ship and a plane from the disputed islands. The Argentine sub was used for detecting and chasing away illegal fishing ships, mainly Chinese ones.
Thanks a lot,
Gracy


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