Friday, November 5, 2010

CombatWords, November 5, 2010: Freestyle

CombatWords, November 5, 2010: Freestyle

The first posters to this thread set the tone for this Combat. You can write about anything, so long as you're first. After 4pm, late posters MUST riff off existing posts. This can go on indefinitely. Example: posters A, B & C post by 4pm. They all pick different topics. Poster D riffs off B's post after 4pm PST. Poster E will be able to riff off A-D. This should keep the combat fluid & personal. If I suspect you just posted canned writing, I'll just disqualify it.

Combat Expiration: 12pm PST, 11/7/2010

Critique Expiration: 12pm PST, 11/8/2010

Bonuses/Penalties: +3 for posts by 5pm PST, 11/5/2010; +2 for posts by 9pm PST 11/5/2010; +1 for posts by 2am PST 11/6/2010.

Penalties: -1 for posts by 8am PST 11/7/2010, -2 for posts made by 4pm PST 11/7/2010. Sorry I didn't announce this sooner.

Oh yeah, da rulez:

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  1. it was uncovered;
    no punches pulled
    a man (or maybe a woman)
    hands me a flyer;
    come come come, bring your friends
    this is life,
    this is where women go
    This is Redemption, this laughter of
    one sad man
    on stage and
    A thousand empty souls
    hungry for his blood

    And as I walk on
    I feel nothing.
    The weight of my laptop
    is no different from the weight
    of the world - full of laughter, forgiveness,
    sex, puppies, compassion, milk, so bearable and
    you bear and bear and bear;

    As Dilbert once said:
    I ask for so little
    And boy do I get it

  2. The white hand
    Milk mafia
    Spreading lies on the backs of cartons
    Missing kids
    Yeah, missing alright
    Their parents, their friends, everything far from them
    They are put there as warning you know
    Little whistle blowers who sought to question
    That milk makes strong bones
    The white hand, the milk mafia
    Isn't a bitch to suffer
    So it snatches them up
    In the middle of the night
    Puts them to work in cheese mines on the moon
    (shit they're on to us!)
    Eat your Kraft singles
    Grow your milk mustache out of a tall glass
    Savor the bone growing goodness of milk
    (meet me out back, keep looking forward)
    Pat your belly for a job well done
    A soldier on the front lines, beating back Osteoporosis
    (I'll explain all this then.)
    We salute you soldier
    The waking American dream...

  3. Reflection

    I stood over
    the Tiber at sunset
    and watched it
    as it carved through
    the two thousand
    year old travertine
    and sandstone.

    In the distance
    I could see
    the dome of St Peter’s
    wax and wane
    in the shadow
    of birds in waves
    of evening flight.

    Time passes
    without emotion
    between the seven hills
    and the river flows
    without memory;
    from Le Vene
    to the Tyrrhenian Sea.

    Here I am old and young,
    Christian and pagan,
    world weary and world wise.
    I have never seen
    a clear reflection
    in the Hudson, but
    from the Ponte Sant'Angelo
    I can see the eternity
    and beauty that is Rome

  4. Curdle

    After I’ve made my last crack,
    When I’ve tipped my final high hat, I flush
    myself from the back of the club, and trudge along,
    following the sour stench of the Lactose River.
    My ears still shudder with the tidal crash
    of palms hammering nails into one another
    like wobbling sheets of tin that echo thunder.
    I always hoped I would vanish rather than witness
    my routine become tarnished, thought it best
    to bow out before the torment
    of watching one’s talent ferment.
    Best to erase all trace of atrophy, of rot.

    I kneel on the wax bank and peer down,
    looking for my reflected visage on the surface film.
    But none gazes back; the milk flows, lapping at the shore
    llike a plump hand slapping the ass of the cheeky moon.
    There are fish down there, slick and plump as cheeses,
    slipping through the opaque liquid. I can’t see them
    but their aquatic giggles burst
    when they kiss the surface, and I rise
    and take a step, and another, ready to be drained,
    wiped clean, empty as a bubble.

  5. Equilibrium [CombatWords Poem November 5, 2010]

    The first time an animal shat in the river
    To bless it with turds and establish a pattern
    Of blood in the stool—a compact was ratified:
    Water shall spoil, yet will ever seem sweetened.
    Freeways relax like the creeks of vacation,
    The fog on the bridge will remind you of nothing,
    Apartments will imitate caves of the mountain—
    And day will emulate the moon's reflection,
    And fog will seem like steam: the ocean boiling.

  6. Forpuck:
    • I read through this several times because the meaning kept changing for me. I kept reading because the words drew me in (+1)
    • Dilbert quote in a poem (+1)
    • Forgiveness, sex, puppies(+1)

    The Humanist:
    • I laughed as I read it (+1)
    • The White Hand (+1)

    Steven Marty Grant:
    • Overworked/forced metaphor (-1)
    • The end just fucking sucks! (-1)

    • Great incorporation of the previous 3 (+1)
    • Most complete poem (+1)

    • Uses the word “shat’ (+1)
    • Made me wish I had not posted mine (+1)

  7. forpuck:
    +1 liked it.
    -1 weak ending. Maybe you just need a better transition to the last paragraph from the one preceding it; it's actually not a bad idea to end with a joke, tying it back to the comedy club, but it feels too disconnected from the rest.

    Not sure I understand it all, but it made me laugh. +1

    -1 Wasn't feeling this one. Felt half-baked and too abstract for me. Plus, you need to stop grading your own pieces. Self-deprecation is MY shtick, see? See?

    +1 Enjoyed the hell out of this one, despite some confusing imagery.
    -1 Lines 2, 3, 8 & 9 don't scan. I think the whole piece would benefit if you abandoned the attempt at strict meter.

  8. Tsk, Rtoady, I intentionally switched the meters, to create a more staggered flow. So imma have to disagree w/ you on that.

    Forpuck/AG: From a craft perspective, I want you to consider reversing the opening stanza & doing it like this:

    "This is Redemption, this laughter of
    one sad man
    on stage and
    A thousand empty souls
    hungry for his blood.
    it was uncovered;
    no punches pulled
    a man (or maybe a woman)
    hands me a flyer;
    come come come, bring your friends
    this is life,
    this is where women go"

    Got maudlin & too surfacey for me. -1


    Humanist: Liked it: +1
    Really imaginative: +1


    SMG: I liked this & didn't. I think the last stanza is really where you need to start the poem. The rest of that stuff can get packed into a sharper narrative that focuses on your final stanza's edge.


    RToady: Liked it +1
    Excellent riffs off prior 3. +1