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RoughitforGreen247
Hey, I'm taking my first stab at poetry and was wondering if anybody could critique this for me. I'm not asking for anything too inconvenient, just if you have some thoughts on it, please post them. Thanks.

The Righteous Scoundrel

Right is the ever elusive quarry

Yet you claim to hold Right clenched in your fearful hand
This to be waved when inadequacy looms
This to be clutched for assurance in waters unsteady
This to be proclaimed in voice boldened by falsehood

To justify existence that stood tall before its cry was masked
To justify lives never meant to benefit
To justify, to hide, to shield the thoughts never held in hand
Thoughts never waved, nor clutched, nor proclaimed
Allowed deep into the breast, deep into the heart
Merely so that their sight may be hidden from the world

From the world you preached Right to
TurtleShell
Is this your first poem? You said you were taking your "first stab" at poetry... this seems very unfirst poem like. Have you written others?

I think the language is appealing. I'm not one for most poetry because I hate the way I end up standing there scratching my head wondering, what in the world is this guy talking about? The more vague, artsy, lofty the poem, the more annoyed I become. I'm a little to literal, maybe. ...which is all to say, I think this is nice because I can understand what you're trying to say, but you're not hitting me in the face with it. Nice balance.
RoughitforGreen247
Thank you for the compliments.

It is the first poem I have written on my own. In high school I have been assigned various english assignments over the years that have had something or other to do with poetry, but this is, as I said, my first real attempt at it. I assumed, and hopefully rightfully so, that my experience as a novel and novella writer would carry over to some degree.

I know what you mean about overly metaphorical poems. In some cases, I doubt if the even writer's themselves understand what they are talking about. But maybe that is the best poetry in some ways because we can all assume that it means something very deep and spiritual without anybody actually having to have a deep and spiritual experience (not that I'm saying these are bad, just saying that these are quite rare).
TurtleShell
RoughitforGreen247 wrote:
Thank you for the compliments.

It is the first poem I have written on my own. In high school I have been assigned various english assignments over the years that have had something or other to do with poetry, but this is, as I said, my first real attempt at it. I assumed, and hopefully rightfully so, that my experience as a novel and novella writer would carry over to some degree.

I know what you mean about overly metaphorical poems. In some cases, I doubt if the even writer's themselves understand what they are talking about. But maybe that is the best poetry in some ways because we can all assume that it means something very deep and spiritual without anybody actually having to have a deep and spiritual experience (not that I'm saying these are bad, just saying that these are quite rare).


I'm going to say that if you have to assume that it means something deep and spiritual without getting the spiritual experience, it's...kind of worthless. Maybe the poem has personal value for the poet, but that doesn't make it good poetry. That probably sounds harsh, but in all honestly, most poetry disgusts me. I like a little of it here and there...there's a poet named Stephen Dobyns that I particularly appreciate, and I recently read a book of poems by Catullus that I enjoyed (the guy had attitude).
RoughitforGreen247
I guess I could have phrased that better, but what I really meant was getting a sense of depth and significance without really understanding what the significance is. Not assuming that something is good because you have heard others say so or whatever, but seeing hints in the writing that its a much larger idea than you immediately, or even ultimately, can comprehend.
TurtleShell
I just think that sometimes there's a fine line between spiritual/mental/emotional/intellectual depth and meaningless silliness...I like poetry that manages to walk the line, but as with all artists, sometimes poets just become too full of themselves and they lose sight of the ball.
melissareich
I think you could say this was a very good first stab at poetry. I really like the fact that even though it doesn't rhyme at all, it still had like the sense of meaning, definitely. I usually cannot write poetry unless I rhyme, which is why I don't like reading this sort of poetry, but I really liked this! I liked the whole way it starts in one sentence, ends in one sentence. I don't really no the names of the specific poetry types, as you may have noticed, but this is good, way better than my first try!

Onto what you were discussing, I think I know what you mean by things be written to sound good or what somebody else has said what's good, right, ethical, whatever... but they have no meaning or clue as to why they wrote it, matter of fact, I could have already accomplished that, I just remember writing a few poems that were in many ways expression, but it wasn't necessarily talking about myself and many people thought it was. When I got the chance to say it wasn't about myself, I couldn't really explain because I didn't know who I was writing about, what I was trying to convey, or anything of the sort. So I learned that next time I write something (once in a blue moon) I'll definitely make sure I write my feelings and my mood, then I'll be sure to have an answer when someone asks.
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