Author Topic: The Spirit Dry  (Read 2664 times)

Offline Bryn

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The Spirit Dry
« on: June 08, 2006, 08:31:53 AM »
Hello my chums,
here is a preliminary stab at a poem which has been sidling through the back of my face for some time. I shall treasure any comments but I'm especially interested in how it engages with you in terms of language and characterisation. Its only a first draft so UNLEASH YOURSELVES UPON IT, i say.

The Spirit Dry

You know, your spirit, son?
Not you Ďspirit-soní,
I mean, your balls have not


Yes father, I see. Please go on.

Youíll need that pretty symbiosis;
Youíll need to know
In every cell and alveoli
Thereís something more,
Something that wonít crumble
In the smoke.

I donít smoke, father.

But if you do,
Remember that the helix knots,
And the weight of revelation
Will bend your spine,
And the craving blots good sense.

I do not smoke.

But just in case,
Like me,
You shame and fossilise
Your insides
For a look that tessellates
Better with your mates,
Iím saying to you,
When your throat and thoughts turn
To bright obsidian,
And your lungs burn
Youíll want to know
There a spirit there within you,
A beautiful other that will not part
Like your mother.

Father, would it not be better if I just donít start?

Offline randomElf

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Re: The Spirit Dry
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2006, 01:02:32 PM »
Hi Bryn,

I really want to say something about this poem. Something meaningful and insightful and deep that will galvinize both my and your understanding and intent of this prose.  But I can't.

It's obvious the structure is good and the rhtym great, (I love the way you've broken up the lengthy stanzas with one line dialogue by the boy) and you have a fine understanding of words (myself, I had to look many of them up), which lead to me to find the content slightly obscure and that may only be a result of my own ignorance. Yes, the interaction between the two characters is well orchestrated, the father being dominant and almost talking over his son, not really mindful of his words, but I'm not sure what he's trying to say? And there seems to be an ambigueity of the father's last words: Will not part....Like your mother i.e. will not part like your mother & will not part, like your mother did. But perhaps this was intentional.

There is something going on here above merely smoking or not smoking, but maybe you should give more clues. The last line from the boy.  There too I feel he isn't just talking about smoking, and i'm left to ponder what. I think you have obvious talent and a fine grasp of the english language, but here you were just too clever for me, and that isn't necessarily your fault  ;D

I hope others can comment with more insight, and that I have given you something useful to mull over.

Do you know this site : ?

Think you will find it amazingly good. I have.

Offline actpoet1

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Re: The Spirit Dry
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2006, 02:07:27 PM »

I have to agree that randomElf. There's no need to me to be redundant. So take heed to his reply.
Write on,


If you want, click on the link below and walk into my mind. My name is in the middle on the right.

Offline Bryn

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Re: The Spirit Dry
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2006, 07:11:53 PM »
Thanks to both of you. ELF's insights are correct about there being more than smoking at stake here, but indeed it is a rather cryptic reference. As for language, i acknowlege the problems posed to accessibility and certainly wasn't trying alienate.

An icecream scoop of thanks for the suggestions, ammendments are being mulled-over.

Offline Bryn

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Re: The Spirit Dry
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2006, 09:29:54 PM »


right the way over.

Offline caliban1

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Re: The Spirit Dry
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2006, 10:30:20 PM »
Hi Bryn and fellow poets,
This certainly is an interesting poem, the characterization is effective and sophisticated.  I like the interplay between the father, who is not quite as bad as Polonius, but certainly in that catergory of parent who is overimpressed with his own wisdom. The son has heard all of this before and is wary of his father's mind games.  The language actually is quite effective because it is coming from the mouth of the father who is at least intellegient, well educated and conversant with advanced concepts.  "Tesselated" is an interesting word choice.  I am sure that it's use does more than suggested that the father is  professor of geometry and may add a level of meaning to the poem I do not yet see.  However, I rather like this in a poem and do not mind going back to read it a few times.

In the end, I rather admire the son, who is perhaps the wiser of the two.  I think he would prefer not to lead the sort of intellectually, spirtually convoluted life his father has led.

All in all, Bryn, an excellent draft, and I hope you stick around the forum to post more and to stimulate other poets with your michevious wit.

All the best,
It is all a metaphor.

Offline Bryn

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Re: The Spirit Dry
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2006, 11:06:26 PM »
Oh my. Cheers for that caliban. I'm slightly bored with using the word 'insightful' (i've said it like four times today in various contexts) so its hard to say more right now, but i do appreciate your comments. Do you think a better title would be 'Half-way Between Polonius And That Overbearing Dad Character From The Fast Show'? I can't think of any Shakespearian versions of the latter, but if you know the one i mean...insight me.