I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world,
to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

9 January 2015

Storm Watching (blackout poem)

Storm Watching

Cool rain
lazy thunder.

Back verandah calm,
the brave uneasy.

Spraying. Pelting.
I am tender.

The front draping, the door
near me. Safety.


Not an electricity blackout, but a response to the latest dVerse prompt. I promised myself that this year I would prefer revisions to prompts, but this prompt gives me a method of revising! I decided to use it on one of my own recent poems which I thought a bit lack-lustre. The original is here.  And the blackout is below. (Mind you, I still don't like the poem, lol. Sometimes they are beyond saving. This was one way to find that out.)


I sit outside in the cool,
in the rain and lazy thunder,
under the wide overhang
of the back verandah.

My companion stretches and shifts
on his blanket, attempting calm.
But his sister was the brave cat.
Without her, he's uneasy.

So we come inside from thunder
and spraying, pelting rain.
I like all that but he, I guess, has no need
to prove himself to me. He knows

I am very tender of him, I won't
challenge or scorn or compete.
Instead I usher him in, get him settled,
Then I find me a spot on the front verandah.

I see him through the flywire
draping himself inside the door,
looking out -- near me
in safety. We are both content.

27/11/14

41 comments:

  1. ha - very cool to do it with your own poem... a good exercise for sure... i love watching a decent storm - and even more when safe myself - the thrill and cozyness... smiles

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  2. I like this version. Maybe because my favorite type of poetry is simple and bare. I like 'the brave uneasy' and 'I am tender'.

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    1. Thanks. Maybe it has possibilities, but this might not be the final version in that case.

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  3. pretty cool using it on your own..pairing it down to its very essence...
    i imagine i have a few i could pair down that way as well....

    i love a storm too...but if it is too intense
    def good to have an escape route....ha

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    1. I changed the meaning a bit from the original, where going inside was more for the cat's sake.

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  4. LAZY THUNDER sounds/looks like a rock band, a new novel, an epic poem. So far, you were the first out here on the trail to redact your own work; but cool idea, for sure.

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    1. Ha ha, you're right. I should use it as a title for something else some day. (Smile)

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  5. Oh I like the idea of using blackout with your own poem, Rosemary. I like sparse words rather than wordy lines, aid I think with your shortened version your words really pack a punch. You tempt me to try this technique using one of my own poems.

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    1. A similar idea worked well on my 'dead woman' poem recently. Definitely has possibilities for revisions, but perhaps is not always the solution.

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  6. This is just awesome.. cutting down your poem to just the bare skeleton creates a strength that is just so good...

    Spraying, Pelting,
    I am tender.

    That says so much... thank you for this response Rose-Mary.

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  7. I love the "cool rain, lazy thunder" Nice, Rosemary

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  8. Brilliant idea, Rosemary. Most of our initial drafts do need a lot of erasure. The overall result is wonderful.

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    1. Victoria, I'm glad you think so. Maybe I won't dismiss it out of hand after all.

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  9. A nice subtle way to depict a black out due to a thunder storm. I would have half expected something more jumpy and full of energy. I like the calm feel you gave it though because it is different.

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    1. You give me too much credit! It was actually NOT meant to refer to an electrical blackout.

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    2. Though perhaps I should just take a bow and claim credit for being cleverer than I really was, lol.

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  10. You make it look effortless, I admire the tight lines, terse words ~

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    1. It certainly showed me how much of my wordiness is unnecessary!

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  11. this worked out nicely... cool end

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  12. The 'I am tender' really got me. Great write.

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    1. It's an interesting process, intuiting what to include and what to leave out.

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  13. Wow, that was creative blacking out some of your own poem. It created a whole new feeling. That might be fun to try on one of mine. I like the thought of lazy thunder.

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    1. What was interesting to me was that I even pared out on the paring back, further blacking out my own blackout, to arrive at this.

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  14. Fantastic, Rosemary. I thought of doing the same thing. Still might.

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  15. You used your own poem! How cool. Lovely tranquil image you have painted here.

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  16. I could feel this storm as I read through the lines. Nice, Rosemary.

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  17. I think your blackout revision really got your poem down to it's essence. Now I think I should take a black marker to mine! Great idea, and result, too.

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    1. I'm certainly planning to do a bit more of it!

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  18. I love your idea. It might make cutting easier if we think of ourselves as turning a poem into an erasure. I have a couple of poems I'm going to dig out!

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    1. Hopefully it will help some of mine that have been languishing as drafts unfit to see the light of day. *Grin*

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  19. reminds me of my favorite kind of evening...storm rolling outside the window as i cuddle up with my coffee and read. :)

    great blackout poem!

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  20. I think, Rosemary, you are really brave! To cut/trim your own poem, wow! As of brave character at veranda it could be ...the flower too....and here I want to hear the story: if flower - its thoughts about human...; if the person - why he/she stays outside watching the storm....some associations? hurting feelings? or opposite - happy feelings.... ~ just my ideas.... :)x

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    1. Ah yes, a poem might be taken in either direction -- expanded instead of pared back. :) I am not sure where you get the flower from, though. My name? The 'passionate crone' orchid motif pictured right? A misreading of 'flywire' in the original? I'm mystified!

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  21. What an insight you had in reworking your own poem for the blackout. I like both the original and the blackout and think the blackout is more emotionally potent. Nicely done!

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    1. 'Necessity is the mother ...' I was expecting a new printer but it hadn't been delivered in time for me to respond to the prompt, so I had to use something already on my computer. It certainly gave me a great tool for revision!

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