#1
Educational note: Makó is a Hungarian town 30km from the Romanian border. It and the towns around it get the most sunshine in all of Hungary, and it gets very little rain. It is famous for its onions and garlic, and has been growing onions since the 1500s. The mud in its river, the Maros, could be some of the best in the world (its top looks like the top of a Mars bar). This poem is set from the side of our campsite, which was in a few lovely fields in between the river and the railroad tracks.

This is pretty much the only poem about my summer that is a dream rather than reality (and so it’s probably the worst). The next bulk of pieces I’m going to post are a kind of series, and a few of them rely on that series to be anything at all.


Makó

I sit at the side of the tracks
and wait for the last train to come.
I sit in the mud and the grass
feeling the wind passing over my waiting head
and I know that it will come.
This track’s run for one hundred years or more;
you can tell by the rust and how it blends
so casually into the sparse suburbs around it.
How all the plum trees are pushed back towards the fields
as though they once cowered in front of the wheel.
The past pushes lines towards the now
and somewhere deep within Hungary
horsemen are stopping to allow my train to pass.
I can smell the straw being kicked up by steel feet
and the grease on a well groomed moustache.
I can even see the prints where wooden wheels
once pressed down on the ground,
bound for the border, just thirty kilometers further
past this old border town.
Once we’re moving forwards I too will catch glimpses
of horses leading old men back to their houses,
their carts laden with onions and garlic.
I’ll see the painted houses, red dresses
and candle lights in the darkness
like a Western movie seen from a train
in which I will ride the rails to a better day.
And here it comes. I gather my bags together and board,
taking a window seat by the door.
But close to the border the trains slows
and people jump off onto the platform below.
I see the station master in his office
reviewing the workings of the day.
Hear the shuffling of papers and passports
in the hands of border guards
informing me I have to pay.
And I feel the pushing of people behind me
as they hand over plastic money,
before walking on towards another country.
But I cower backwards like the trees
readying themselves for an industrial killing spree.
There's no progress to reality.
There's only one thing we can do to thwart the plot of these albino shape-shifting lizard BITCHES!
#2
I really adore this. It lacks the inseverable emotional ties evident in much of your work, and in such literary objectivism, your thoughts, your dreams shine. There is no correcting of a dream, for that is a reality within itself, as is the one you've kindly created for me here - I know the greased up moustache, I know the railroad tracks, because they were explained to me from the pretense of sounding sleep. One could act well in the Western film you mention, or be Marty searching for the Doc, in another town and time, but it's here and now, not just the pretty and the well-ordained.
#3
This is very, very pretty. I feel when reading this like you are not only a poet, but an artist, painting a picture in my head.

A painter of words.


Well done.
Today I feel electric grey
I hope tomorrow, neon black
#4
First of all thank you for the crit. I appreciate it. Anyways, this piece left me wanting more. It set up the scenery so well and then when it ended I was like, wait, that's it? It definitely felt like the beginning of a larger story and I hope you continue on with it. But anyways, the piece in itself was quite good, it just didn't feel complete. Like the ending didn't feel like an ending if that makes sense. Also, I don't know why you broke it up in poetry/line form. While I was reading it my brain just keep thinking, why isn't this written in paragraphs? But anyway, I look forward to reading more from you.
#5
Thank you loads, guys. I didn't really expect that kind of reaction for this, I'm very glad you enjoyed it

themarsvolta: hopefully the rest of this series, or the next piece, will help this one feel finished. That's why I posted the note of warning, this is part of the trip (albeit the next piece will be set in Romania, and make the ending of this one make little sense!). I found your paragraphs comment interesting, so I set it out that way in word to see, and I feel that it lost some of the rhythm. I may well attempt an edit to make it flow better in either/both forms, though, so that this one feels like poetry and make the other feel like prose. I think if I'm going to do that, I'd prefer to get this one reading like it should be in this form, though!

Thank you all again, spike and Ganoosh, I'm sure I'll give you more worthy crit backs sometime.
There's only one thing we can do to thwart the plot of these albino shape-shifting lizard BITCHES!
#6
Quote by DigUpHerBones
Educational note: Makó is a Hungarian town 30km from the Romanian border. It and the towns around it get the most sunshine in all of Hungary, and it gets very little rain. It is famous for its onions and garlic, and has been growing onions since the 1500s. The mud in its river, the Maros, could be some of the best in the world (its top looks like the top of a Mars bar). This poem is set from the side of our campsite, which was in a few lovely fields in between the river and the railroad tracks.

This is pretty much the only poem about my summer that is a dream rather than reality (and so it’s probably the worst). The next bulk of pieces I’m going to post are a kind of series, and a few of them rely on that series to be anything at all.


Makó

I sit at the side of the tracks
and wait for the last train to come.
Breaking it at "wait", instead of "and", may allow for a brief pause when the next line begins, thus reinforcing the slow, tepid and calming feeling of patience. It shows more confidence, as well. Both in your own abilities as a human, and as a writer.

I sit in the mud and the grass
feeling the wind passing over my waiting head
"waiting head" felt weird. It added a touch of humour... which is kind of out of place.

and I know that it will come.
This was lovely, so simple, but really lovely.
This track’s run for one hundred years or more;
I like the more conversational, cultured "track's" here (instead of using "track has").
you can tell by the rust and how it blends
so casually into the sparse suburbs around it.
This doesn't quite feel complete. As a replacement, though, I'm unsure.
How all the plum trees are pushed back towards the fields
as though they once cowered in front of the wheel.
The past pushes lines towards the now
and somewhere deep within Hungary
horsemen are stopping to allow my train to pass.
This is great. Although, "cowered in front of the wheel" isn't quite comprehensive enough for me to really enjoy it and see it for what you imagined it as.
I can smell the straw being kicked up by steel feet
and the grease on a well groomed moustache.
Humour, again, is added. I don't know whether it's altogether fitting...

I can even see the prints where wooden wheels
once pressed down on the ground,
bound for the border, just thirty kilometers further
past this old border town.
Once we’re moving forwards I too will catch glimpses
of horses leading old men back to their houses,
their carts laden with onions and garlic.
I’ll see the painted houses, red dresses
and candle lights in the darkness
like a Western movie seen from a train
in which I will ride the rails to a better day.
Lovely.
And here it comes. I gather my bags together and board,
taking a window seat by the door.
This jumps to the next stage too abruptly. Surely, the train journey was slow, where you experienced every little detail in full. To me, time goes slowly when you're having fun. Every holiday I've ever had felt like an eternity, not the... "that went quick" philosophy.
But close to the border the trains slows
and people jump off onto the platform below.
I see the station master in his office
reviewing the workings of the day.
Hear the shuffling of papers and passports
in the hands of border guards
informing me I have to pay.
And I feel the pushing of people behind me
as they hand over plastic money,
before walking on towards another country.
But I cower backwards like the trees
readying themselves for an industrial killing spree.
There's no progress to reality.
I love the way this becomes hectic. You've perfectly encapsulated the often stressfulness, but shear thrill, of travelling in a bustling area full of people you are wary of. It harps back to home, also.


This was a nice read, but it wasn't until the ending that I really started to fall for it.
#7
"This track’s run for one hundred years or more;
you can tell by the rust and how it blends
so casually into the sparse suburbs around it."

these are the kind of lines that hint me of how much you might have grown as a writer. The kind of details that paint vivid and complete imagery. I have, however, two main complaints with this piece.

-Tenses. You seem to be tangled up with the happening of that train trip. We start the piece with you talking present, and then future when it comes to the train trip, and then at the end you talk present, but we find ourselves at the end of the trip. I needed to stop 3 or 4 times to ask myself just exactly what is the narrator's point of view and implication in the story. does she tell us something that has happened, that is happening now or that will happen? From what I see, all three, in a tangled-up fashion. The structure doesn't help making things clearer.

-Second complaint : I liked the easiness of the piece. picturing you sitting around, making observations. There are some times, like in traveling, where you can spend your whole day just in amazement for what surrounds you. admiring the beauty of it all. I thought that's what that poem was going about. But then I reached with disappointment :
"But I cower backwards like the trees
readying themselves for an industrial killing spree.
There's no progress to reality."

I see the sense of progress that you inserted throughout the piece, the trees, horses/train, etc, but I felt like there was such a sudden change in voice that it denatured the poem of the feelings it carried. The writing was uplifting and calming, but then we end up with some kind of pessimistic morale or something. If that was your goal, fine, I think you could develop more the concept of "reality" and the duality that you see between that and what you've been living, if that makes sense, but anyway...
my main question is what was your objective with this piece? I guess that could orientate my reading and make it a more enjoyable one.

/blizzard of thoughts.
#8
yes yes this was very good.

as though they once cowered in front of the wheel.

this seemed a bit unnatural when compared to the ease of the rest of your description. I think you could very easily make the plum tree image more effective with a little help in this line.


very nice.
informing me I have to pay

I think this would work better if it was something more like "directing me to pay"
it seems like too many words as is.

I do think some of the linebreaks could be improved to help it flow and to make the poetry form more effective.


I will read this again because I really enjoyed it on the first read. If I come up with anything I'll let you know but this was a very cleanly executed work with a fairly consistent tone that fits well with the often disconnected passing of time spent focusing on very little in the midst of a lot.

Anatomy Anatomy
Whale Blue Review

Park that car
Drop that phone
Sleep on the floor
Dream about me
#9
I sit at the side of the tracks
and wait for the last train to come.
I sit in the mud and the grass
feeling the wind passing over my waiting head
'passing over'. I like the passivity of it (you're just sitting there) but I think you can find a better way to express it. Something more evocative that keeps the character passive
and I know that it will come.
This track’s run for one hundred years or more;
you can tell by the rust and how it blends
so casually into the sparse suburbs around it.
I liked this, suburbs even almost sounds like shrubs
How all the plum trees are pushed back towards the fields
as though they once cowered in front of the wheel.
Reading this I thought it should be something like '...cowered to be so near' the wheel. Something that more implies the terror of being so close to the trains wheels. To take it literally: of course they cower if they're in front of the wheels, but the train is so terrifying that they're scared simply to be near it and so on. If yow see what oi moin.

The past pushes lines towards the now
and somewhere deep within Hungary
horsemen are stopping to allow my train to pass.
Am I reading this wrong or are the horsemen in the past? Or is this a reference to how some parts of Hungary are still very rustic? Or am I being obtuse and its something more subtle?
I can smell the straw being kicked up by steel feet
and the grease on a well groomed moustache.
Like this a lot, grease is an excellent word btw. Who still greases moustaches though? lol
I can even see the prints where wooden wheels
once pressed down on the ground,
bound for the border, just thirty kilometers further
past this old border town.
Didn't like this repetition.
Once we’re moving forwards I too will catch glimpses
of horses leading old men back to their houses,
their carts laden with onions and garlic.
I’ll see the painted houses, red dresses
Again didn't like the repeat
and candle lights in the darkness
like a Western movie seen from a train
like a western movie? Really? That doesn't to chime particularly with what you're describing
in which I will ride the rails to a better day.
And here it comes. I gather my bags together and board,
taking a window seat by the door.
This rhyme seemed quite bad to be, the 'by the door bit' was just a little too mundane to not feel like a force rhyme.
But close to the border the trains slows
trains slows I assume is a typo?
and people jump off onto the platform below.
I see the station master in his office
reviewing the workings of the day.
Hear the shuffling of papers and passports
in the hands of border guards
informing me I have to pay.
And I feel the pushing of people behind me
as they hand over plastic money,
before walking on towards another country.
But I cower backwards like the trees
readying themselves for an industrial killing spree.
There's no progress to reality.


I thought this was very good but at the end (when you stop dreaming so to speak) it lost its lustre, for me. The beauty of it was in the description and when that little bit of action kicks in I turned off. An the description was excellent, btw.
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