#1
Promises were hard to come by in that house,
and when i chanced upon one, it usually wasn't kept.
Mother used to say she'd read to me at night,
i'd get my weathered copy of the BFG ready each bedtime,
more excited to hear my mothers voice than roald dahl's,
but she never had the time.

I had all of the time in the world and despite this,
each night a little bit of my belief in her was lost
as i turned page after page, a solitary effort.
It hurt to be let down, it hurt to hold that book
in my fragile little hands, it hurt to read in silence,
but she never saw it.

So here's to simple solitude and keeping myself shut,
much like my bedroom door is kept each night,
the light does not reach me to disturb my sleep.
I've learnt to rely upon myself, my voice, my eyes.
I do a damn good job of it, i must say,
but she'll never see.


16/02/08

m + w.
#2
Wow. That was amazing. So moving in so many ways. I found absolutely no flaws at all. Really great piece. You have great voice, and know how to express emotion. Great job. Crit mine? It's called A Tribute to Her (On This Valentine's Day). Wow. Great piece. Keep up the good work.
#3
Promises were hard to come by in that house,
and when i chanced upon one, it usually wasn't kept.
Mother used to say she'd read to me at night,
i'd get my weathered copy of the BFG ready each bedtime,
more excited to hear my mothers voice than roald dahl's,
but she never had the time.

So, content wise this could be seen as pretty standard stuff, but it's a rare sight on these boards now. The first 2 lines captured me from the start, the were worded fantastically well. However, while reading through the last 4 I found myself wanting to re-arrange them slightly. L3 for instances feels too distant, if you were to say "read to me tonight" it just makes it a tad more personal. The qualm with L4 is the 'bed' in bedtime, is it really necessary? Or perhaps look into why 'each' felt slightly awkward. Idk, something feels wrong there to me. Capitalise Mr. Dahl?
The last line is slightly too simple. I expected it the first time and by the 3rd stanza even skipped it, I knew what was coming.


I had all of the time in the world and despite this,
each night a little bit of my belief in her was lost
as i turned page after page, a solitary effort.
It hurt to be let down, it hurt to hold that book
in my fragile little hands, it hurt to read in silence,
but she never saw it.

Too much hurt for me. idk, it works but again it was to be expected. The images are crisp and clean but that is mainly due to the all too often portrayal of such a scene. There's little in the way of character development and/or mis-en-scene, which kinda lets this piece run in a very static direction, which I feel does damage it slightly.

So here's to simple solitude and keeping myself shut,
much like my bedroom door is kept each night,
the light does not reach me to disturb my sleep.
I've learnt to rely upon myself, my voice, my eyes.
I do a damn good job of it, i must say,
but she'll never see.

The first 2 lines in each stanza are always the strongest, this is no exception. I liked this stanza as much as #1, the penultimate line just changed the tone enough to begin to reveal the emotion this piece could draw on if it were written with a more character driven plot. I mean this is nicely written, but it doesn't touch new ground like I'd have hoped. So I'm 50/50 with it.

peACE man.
Filth, pure filth... That's what you are.
#4
Quote by bowl of oranges
Promises were hard to come by in that house,
and when i chanced upon one, it usually wasn't kept.
Quite simple language but engages the reader and conveys your point, nice solid opener.
Mother used to say she'd read to me at night,
i'd get my weathered copy of the BFG ready each bedtime,
more excited to hear my mothers voice than roald dahl's,
but she never had the time.
This picked up, but I find that the first two lines are strong, then the last, the middle of the stanza is lacking in my opinion.

I had all of the time in the world and despite this,
each night a little bit of my belief in her was lost
Maybe refer back to how weathered your book was, possibly relating it to the fact that your belief in her was weathering, or something else rather than the bland phrase "little bit"...

The use of "a margin of my belief" would be more effective I think as it's still referring to the page you turn at night.

as i turned page after page, a solitary effort.
It hurt to be let down, it hurt to hold that book
in my fragile little hands, it hurt to read in silence,
but she never saw it.
I liked the flow of this, effective again, not much to say other than maybe slight alteration of word choice again..."little". There's a little too much repition in this stanza, with page and hurt, it feels unnecessarily busy.

So here's to simple solitude and keeping myself shut,
much like my bedroom door is kept each night,
Very effective, loved this.
the light does not reach me to disturb my sleep.
Loved this line too, I like how this stanza is using characterisation, we see you becoming more independant, effective...
I've learnt to rely upon myself, my voice, my eyes.
I do a damn good job of it, i must say,
but she'll never see.
Although it may seem a bit repetative, I liked the ending and how it tied up to subtley, it was a nice ending.




Overall, I think some changes could be made to improve this, but some of the imagery is immense and really effective. The contrasts between the last stanza and the rest of the poem is nice as this ties the piece up, I liked it...

Some of the content between the opening lines of the stanza are pretty weak I feel, and I'm gonna have to agree with THW, the first two lines are always the strongest, and I feel they all link, and the final lines are pretty effective too, but I feel you need stronger content after the really good opening lines, and possibly a greater variation of the closing lines of each stanza.

Please check out my latest piece:

http://ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=787956
Last edited by martinb at Feb 15, 2008,
#5
grevhead221 - Thanks for your kind words, i'm glad you enjoyed it, i'll track down your piece and take a look at it.

The Hurt Within - This is one of the very few critiques i've received on this board which have been an actual help. I agree with a lot of the points you bring up and feel i should go back and write certain parts again, not something i am compelled to do very often.

This was a rushed effort and strayed outside any style i think i've written in before, i tend to usually portray things in metaphor and imagery rather than leave them sitting on the table for all to see. Kudos for the comprehensive critique, it has helped. I'll be sure to take a look at a piece of yours soon.