Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

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BobBradshaw
Posts: 1500
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#1 Post by BobBradshaw » 22 Oct 2019, 09:38

V2:
Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store


All day I make my rounds, sweeping
the water into eddies
as kids and their mothers bounce in
from the sidewalk,

the kids as eager as finches
on the first warm day of spring,
chatting and nodding their little heads.

The shop is as colorful
as a birthday:
canaries,
red beaks,
orange legs...

A girl dazzled by a clown fish
has tadpole eyes like mine
and studies anemones 
as they extend their arms 
to the glass.

"Careful! Don't touch!"
yaks a bird
as a boy plunges his hand
into my tank.

How can I enter their world
except by making it up?
How do I leave my mark?
I can make a fuss, throw a fit,
swirl the waters
with a furious autograph…

but will I leave behind statues
or lasting poems?

For a few moments maybe
a child will remember me, a poet
as anonymous as any goldfish,
fading in the dusk

as the store lights dim,
the door jangles shut.

V1:
Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store


All day I make my rounds, sweeping
the water into eddies
as kids and their mothers bounce in
from the sidewalk,

the kids as eager as finches
on the first warm day of spring,
chatting and nodding their little heads.

The shop is as colorful
as a birthday: canaries,
red beaks, orange legs...

One girl dazzled by a clown fish
has tadpoles eyes like mine--and studies
the anemones reaching out to her,
touching their long arms to the glass.

"Careful! Don't touch!"
yaks one bird
as a boy plunges his hand into my tank.

Round and round I go
but I can never understand
how the class vanishes into the air

as they leave the shop,
turning right—towards where?
Does the world end there?

Do their parents get to choose
their offspring the way
their little ones choose
a golden retriever,
a red-spotted frog, a tuxedo cat,
a crowned iguana?

How can I enter their world
except by making it up?

I have the same question
as any other goldfish or poet:
How do I leave my mark?
I can make a fuss, throw a fit,
swirl the waters
as if writing a furious
autograph,

but will I leave behind statues
or lasting poems?

For a few moments maybe
a child will remember me, a poet
as anonymous as any goldfish,
fading in the dusk

as the store lights dim,
the door jangles shut.

Kenneth2816
Posts: 1178
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

Re: Poet as a Goldfish in a Pet Store

#2 Post by Kenneth2816 » 22 Oct 2019, 13:40

Like goldfish, poets are discardable. I like this perspective.

I have the same question
as any other goldfish or poet:
How do I leave my mark?
I can make a fuss, throw a fit,
swirl the waters
as if writing a furious
autograph,

but will I leave behind statues
or lasting poems?

For a few moments maybe
a child will remember me, a poet
as anonymous as any goldfish,
fading in the dusk

as the store lights dim,
the door jangles shut.

We will not be remembered but by a few.

meenas17
Posts: 694
Joined: 23 Mar 2014, 11:27

Re: Poet as a Goldfish in a Pet Store

#3 Post by meenas17 » 22 Oct 2019, 15:30

Poets are usually forgotten.
That of a gold fish does not last long.
An impressive analogy.
A little tightening could make the poem still more interesting.
meenas17

BobBradshaw
Posts: 1500
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Re: Goldfish in a Pet Store

#4 Post by BobBradshaw » 22 Oct 2019, 20:34

Thanks, Ken. Meenas, too...where would you tighten, meenas? I would appreciate your suggestions. Best

SivaRamanathan
Posts: 1103
Joined: 14 May 2011, 20:30

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#5 Post by SivaRamanathan » 22 Oct 2019, 21:06

Bob
I read the poem.Let me think about it overnight.
S

BobBradshaw
Posts: 1500
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#6 Post by BobBradshaw » 22 Oct 2019, 22:26

Thanks, appreciate it

BobBradshaw
Posts: 1500
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#7 Post by BobBradshaw » 23 Oct 2019, 22:22

I have made some changes and cuts, suggested by Poetema....I agree with her that cutting would help get through the poem faster, to maintain a fast pace...any idea on what you would cut? Ideas are appreciated...thx, Bob

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

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#8 Post by FranktheFrank » 23 Oct 2019, 22:40

Who is Poetema Bob?
Is that the name of a fish?

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

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#9 Post by FranktheFrank » 23 Oct 2019, 22:42

I think it's too fast Bob
suggest slowing it down with longer lines
there's a lot to take in and slowing down would
enable the reader to absorb.

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

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#10 Post by FranktheFrank » 23 Oct 2019, 22:45

All day I make my rounds, sweeping
the water into eddies as kids and mothers bounce
in from the sidewalk,

the kids as eager as finches
on the first warm day of spring,
chatting and nodding their little heads.

The shop is as colourful as a birthday:
canaries, red beaks, orange legs...

A girl dazzled by a clown fish has tadpole eyes
like mine she studies anemones as they extend
their arms to the glass.

"Careful! Don't touch!" yaks a bird
as a boy plunges his hand
into my tank.

How can I enter their world except by making
it up? How do I leave my mark? I can make
a fuss, throw a fit, swirl the waters
with a furious autograph, but will I leave behind
statues orf lasting poems?

For a few moments maybe
a child will remember me, a poet
as anonymous as any goldfish,
fading in the dusk

as the store lights dim,
the door jangles shut.

Kenneth2816
Posts: 1178
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#11 Post by Kenneth2816 » 23 Oct 2019, 23:27

Bob. There comes a time when a poem is good enough think this one is there

BobBradshaw
Posts: 1500
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#12 Post by BobBradshaw » 23 Oct 2019, 23:52

Thx, Ken...and thanks Poetema

judyt547
Posts: 131
Joined: 17 Jan 2013, 19:46
Location: middle of the woods
Contact:

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#13 Post by judyt547 » 24 Oct 2019, 06:10

Someone reminded me once, quite sharply, that philosophical
questions that take a reader nowhere are more distracting than
helpful in a poem. Make it a statement, or don't make it.

And it has to make sense, in a realistic way, that when you
enter the world of a goldfish you are working in a very small
circle of experience.

That all said, I like the last six lines about the best of all of it.
I think, rightly or wrongly, this is where the poem is.

Just for fun, take those six lines and use them as a starter for another
poem, which will take you in a different direction. Try it. See what
happens with it.

Sometimes
you have to let go
of what you love
have to let go of the song
and make another
with different words
and a different rhythm
but the same music
and dance to that
at least for a little while

Namaste

meenas17
Posts: 694
Joined: 23 Mar 2014, 11:27

Re: Poet as Goldfish in a Pet Store

#14 Post by meenas17 » 24 Oct 2019, 07:24

It is fine, Bob. Reached the level.
Needs no more.
meenas17

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