The Penitent

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Kenneth2816
Posts: 1181
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

The Penitent

#1 Post by Kenneth2816 » 17 Aug 2018, 00:24

Each man cried in his own tongue
to his own God for the winds to still.
They worked the instruments
of their salvation; fingering small clay statuary, rattling bone dice,
the letting of blood.


Water from the blow hole
fell on me like a tepid rain,
The great unblinking eye,
the lateral roll,
scissoring of its jaw.

I counted its vertabrae
like a giant abacus.
The thunder of the massive
heart was like the hammer of God.
I could hear blood rushing in its veins.

When it surfaced, I climbed the barnacled tongue to pick krill from
its teeth the birds missed.


Three days in the bowels of Sheol and I am disgorged.

And for what? These
unwashed heathen bastards
of Nineveh who make
their children pass through fire?

















Original

In the third day of the new moon,I took what
silver I had, booked passage to Joppa to flee Him; but still, the Voice.

Four days at sea, a gale from the east took hold of us.

It snapped the main mast, peeled shiplap from the bow.

Each man cried out to his own god in his own tongue, manipulated the implements of his salvation; bone dice, clay statuary, and the letting of blood.

"Let us inquire of the LORD," they said, "To see who has wrought this evil upon us."

They threw me over board with all my belongings and immediately the sun shone and the water became like glass.

Spray from the blow hole fell on me like a tepid rain. The great unblinking eye, the lateral roll, the scissored jaw,
I slid down its throat.

I am mired in the bowels of Sheol. I counted its vertabra like a huge abacus. The thunder of the massive heart like a hammer in my chest.

When it surfaced I made my way up the barnacled tongue to eat krill the birds left in its teeth.

After three days, I, the retching pentinent, am vomited on dry land.

Nineveh,the seat of rebellion where Nimrod built Babel to ascend the Heavens and take the Almighty by the scruff.

Nineveh with its altar to Ishtar, they
make children pass through the fire.
Nineveh a habitation of demons,
the Mother of Lies.


I stand before them like a mouse before lions. When the words come,it is as if someone else is using my voice.

"Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown."

They fell like dead men,
threw dust into the air.
There was weeping and gnashing of teeth, sack cloth and ashes they
gashed themselves, shaved their
beards and heads,and the LORD
repented of His wrath.

Ten thousand men like cattle
who do not know their left hand from
the right, and I, Jonah,
would rather have died
than to see it

BobBradshaw
Posts: 1558
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Re: Nineveh

#2 Post by BobBradshaw » 17 Aug 2018, 08:58

You pull this difficult challenge off amazingly well. I especially like these lines:

Spray from the blow hole fell on me like a tepid rain. The great unblinking eye, the lateral roll, the scissored jaw,
I slid down its throat.

I am mired in the bowels of Sheol. I counted its vertabra like a huge abacus. The thunder of the massive heart like a hammer in my chest.

When it surfaced I made my way up the barnacled tongue to eat krill the birds left in its teeth.


After such an adventure, I'm a little let down by the ending.....let me revisit the close again in a few days....good work. And a very different character than the last one!

Kenneth2816
Posts: 1181
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

Re: Nineveh

#3 Post by Kenneth2816 » 17 Aug 2018, 10:10

Ty Bob. I tried to stay close to the story.

BobBradshaw
Posts: 1558
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Re: Nineveh

#4 Post by BobBradshaw » 18 Aug 2018, 00:10

You have done an excellent job

IndianaDP
Posts: 163
Joined: 24 Mar 2018, 16:53

Re: Nineveh

#5 Post by IndianaDP » 18 Aug 2018, 00:32

Hi Ken, you have done an excellent job in retelling one of my favorite bible stories, well done. Since this is such a well known story the parts that held my attention most were those where you filled in the blanks with your own ideas. Certainly this is an excellent write and can stand as it is, but it might be even more engaging if it was less a retelling and left the reader a bit uncertain if it was Jonah, at least in the beginning.

FranktheFrank
Posts: 1534
Joined: 02 Mar 2016, 18:07
Location: Between the mountains and the sea

Re: Nineveh

#6 Post by FranktheFrank » 18 Aug 2018, 02:44

I enjoyed it, well written account, exactly as Jonah would have told it.
Passing children through fire means they sacrificed their babies to their pagan god,
they were evil beyond belief.
I think you've done an excellent job here Ken.
Spray from the blow hole fell on me like a tepid rain.
The great unblinking eye, the lateral roll, the scissored jaw,
I slid down its throat.
The unblinking eye, so apt.

Kenneth2816
Posts: 1181
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

Re: Nineveh

#7 Post by Kenneth2816 » 18 Aug 2018, 04:36

Dale. I appreciate your input. I feel I need to stay true to the story. I'll look for places I can improve.

Frank. Thank you

Kenneth2816
Posts: 1181
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

Re: The Penitent

#8 Post by Kenneth2816 » 23 Aug 2018, 18:55

Revised. Thank you for the suggestion

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