Crybaby

This is for your own works!!!
imaginary friend
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Crybaby

Post by imaginary friend » Fri Apr 10, 2009 2:16 am

Anxiously
she waits in the schoolyard,
alone
except for the old man
wetting down the day's dust
on the playground.

Stoically
humming to herself,
she summons
the car; willing it to appear
where it's supposed to be
at the end of the bedraggled day.

Quietly
holding at bay
the dread,
that today – this day – is the one
when he will not come;
when finally, he's forgotten her.

Alone now,
the old man
gone,
she runs out of pretend.
Picks up her bag of books, sets off
along the busy road, the forbidden walk.

Angrily
the car pulls up; the door swings open
'Get in.'
Relief, rejection, shame – she pushes back hard,
but they swim up anyway,
spill down dirty, seven year-old cheeks.

'Crybaby'
he mutters, realizing he has
crossed a line,
exposed himself.
She faces the window, begins to explore
the shell hardening around her crybaby heart.
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mat james
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Re: Crybaby

Post by mat james » Fri Apr 10, 2009 2:53 pm

"I knew again;
adults are not wise...
...and my unbroken legs
would take me to sunshine."

(on my unbroken little legs, part2)


my young boy syncs with you young girl, imaginaryfriend.
Reflection is a wonderful mentor.

Regards, MatbbgmephistoJ
"Without light or guide, save that which burned in my heart." San Juan de la Cruz.
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lizzytysh
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Re: Crybaby

Post by lizzytysh » Fri Apr 10, 2009 3:02 pm

oh my g~d, Sheila, your last line took my breath away. The way you built to this, I went from thinking it was a school teacher waiting for her husband to a child waiting for her father. At first, I was going to suggest that you might want to 'show not tell' on your "Stoically," as that's where that thought first occurred to me... but then I scrolled back and a bit forward and saw how you had used it within a pattern... and then, reading on, how well it was working to show the process that is really there and really happens in just that very way... and with your use of unique detail and by the end of your poem, I couldn't have cared less on your methods. This poem speaks to and from so many children's hearts. I love it for that and more, and for the almost-stationary trip you took me on. Mechanically, I couldn't care less... so, per usual, I'll leave those matters to others. An amazing, from-the-inside-out and from-the-outside-in, impacting poem... speaking to the damage neglectful and abusing adults can wreak. I was there, I was her, I was many thousands of children.

Thank you, Sheila.


~ Lizzy
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
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piñata heart
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Re: Crybaby

Post by piñata heart » Fri Apr 10, 2009 4:38 pm

I couldn't say it any better than Lizzy. This is really wonderful. I particularly like the imagery of "the old man wetting down the day's dust on the playground". It transports me back to that time in my own life...really sets the stage. Great stuff.

-ph
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Re: Crybaby

Post by lizzytysh » Fri Apr 10, 2009 5:14 pm

Whoops... in rereading my own post [after reading Pinata's... and thank you, Pinata], I realize I may have given a false impression. I wasn't there in my own real-life childhood; but, I was there as her as I read your poem, Sheila.

Yeah, Pinata... "the old man wetting down the day's dust on the playground" ~ what a detail :shock: 8) !! To even remember that and think to include it... and it's just so transporting.


~ Lizzy
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
imaginary friend
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Re: Crybaby

Post by imaginary friend » Fri Apr 10, 2009 7:58 pm

Thank you for your gentle comments, Mat, Lizzy and Pinata Heart.

Mat, your spirited little boy with his beaten legs was in my thoughts when writing this.

Yes Lizzy, the characters are a small girl and her father. In the long run, her father's selfish actions may have done her a favour; toughened her up, like Mat's little boy. There is a second POV also... the father's. I've been thinking about that since reading Alice's 'Summer with Rosie' poems.
I'm glad the child was real to you Lizzy.

Thank you Pinata Heart for your encouragement. I enjoy your poems.

I should mention Cate's encouragement too; she inspired me to try writing something that wasn't just for fun.

Critiques and suggestions would be welcomed. Please don't be afraid to hurt my feelings. I love poetry, but writing it is very new for me.
3010530027
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Re: Crybaby

Post by 3010530027 » Fri Apr 10, 2009 8:25 pm

imaginary friend wrote:Thank you for your gentle comments, Mat, Lizzy and Pinata Heart.

Mat, your spirited little boy with his beaten legs was in my thoughts when writing this.

Yes Lizzy, the characters are a small girl and her father. In the long run, her father's selfish actions may have done her a favour; toughened her up, like Mat's little boy. There is a second POV also... the father's. I've been thinking about that since reading Alice's 'Summer with Rosie' poems.
I'm glad the child was real to you Lizzy.

Thank you Pinata Heart for your encouragement. I enjoy your poems.

I should mention Cate's encouragement too; she inspired me to try writing something that wasn't just for fun.

Critiques and suggestions would be welcomed. Please don't be afraid to hurt my feelings. I love poetry, but writing it is very new for me.
IF, the last time I compared a poster's effort to an established songwriter I received some really silly comment from a person called Aaron Black that said the comparison was "a slap in the face" to Leonard Cohen!! Presuming no-one else is so super-sensitive this time I am thinking not of Tom Waits but Loudon Wainwright who wrote a song called "Hitting You"


Long ago I hit you, we were in the car
You went crazy in the backseat, it had gone too far
And I pulled the auto over, hit you with all my might
And I knew right away that it was too hard, I'd never make it right

These days things are awful between me and you
All we do is argue like two people who are through
I blame you, your friends, your school, your mother and MTV
Last night I almost hit you, that blame belongs to me


The track comes from an excellent album called "History".

Alice
"I am not a number"
aaronblack
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Re: Crybaby

Post by aaronblack » Fri Apr 10, 2009 10:52 pm

imaginary friend - this is an excellent poem - powerful emotionally and intellectually.
Very nice work.


Sorry to do this in your thread, but

:sigh:

Alice...

:roll:

You are a writer; you should be conscious of the subtleties of the language you use and the impressions likely to be created.


When you post a message that starts with:

"for real writing, check out Tom Waits "Red Shoes" ..."

It is obvious that you are saying that SOME other writing is NOT "real" writing. Certainly, your rude dismissiveness was aimed at the poem you were reviewing, but given that it was your first day on the site, I don't think it was all that "silly" or "over-sensitive" of me to interpret it as an equally rude (and trollish) dismissal of Leonard Cohen's writing, because it implied (though I later realized the implication was unintended, as we discussed) that the writers here - who are all more or less intimately familiar with Leonard Cohen's writing - must need to see some Tom Waits lyrics if they want to see some "real writing."

Subsequently, I thought we had reached a somewhat better understanding - so I'm surprised to see your snide little intro here.

Since you have given evidence that although your modes of expression are sometimes unnecessarily harsh and supercilious, your motives are not particularly trollish, I would not now have the reaction I had initially. Also, I would never have reacted negatively at all if not for the "real writing" comment, as I believe I made very clear from the outset.

I think that you, Alice, are being silly and over-sensitive by bringing this back up now.



-Aaron
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Re: Crybaby

Post by News Gal » Fri Apr 10, 2009 11:15 pm

Absolutely beautiful, Miss Sheila. I love this, despite having gone through something similar when I was in high school and my father was supposed to pick me up, but never showed. The same man who later pointed a gun at my mother and I, sending us off to my grandmother's house until he regained some sanity. He left later the next day.

Your poem really does speak to that experience. I want to thank you for it.
ᎤᏩᎬᏗᏒ ᏥᎪᏩᏘᎲ, ᎯᎩᎾᎵᎢ, ᎠᏓᎯᏍᏗ ᎨᏐ. Uwagvdisv tsigowatihv, higinali'i , adahisdi geso (I've seen the future brother, it is murder.)
3010530027
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Re: Crybaby

Post by 3010530027 » Sat Apr 11, 2009 2:03 am

aaronblack wrote: :sigh:

Alice...

:roll:

You are a writer; you should be conscious of the subtleties of the language you use and the impressions likely to be created.


When you post a message that starts with:

"for real writing, check out Tom Waits "Red Shoes" ..."

It is obvious that you are saying that SOME other writing is NOT "real" writing. Certainly, your rude dismissiveness was aimed at the poem you were reviewing, but given that it was your first day on the site, I don't think it was all that "silly" or "over-sensitive" of me to interpret it as an equally rude (and trollish) dismissal of Leonard Cohen's writing, because it implied (though I later realized the implication was unintended, as we discussed) that the writers here - who are all more or less intimately familiar with Leonard Cohen's writing - must need to see some Tom Waits lyrics if they want to see some "real writing."

Subsequently, I thought we had reached a somewhat better understanding - so I'm surprised to see your snide little intro here.

Since you have given evidence that although your modes of expression are sometimes unnecessarily harsh and supercilious, your motives are not particularly trollish, I would not now have the reaction I had initially. Also, I would never have reacted negatively at all if not for the "real writing" comment, as I believe I made very clear from the outset.

I think that you, Alice, are being silly and over-sensitive by bringing this back up now.



-Aaron
Aaron, maybe you really don't get the point. The idea that I or any other poster here is talented enough to deliver a slap to Leonard Cohen's talents was risible. Maybe you just expressed yourself badly and can't bring yourself to say so. If you still believe it then you truly are mad

Alice
"I am not a number"
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Re: Crybaby

Post by News Gal » Sat Apr 11, 2009 2:44 am

The snobbery and attitudes here amaze me. God-awful. This is exactly why I won't put any of my work up on this forum--someone will misunderstand something and then it's all downhill from there.

Stop worrying about how you express yourselves and learn to respect each other first.
ᎤᏩᎬᏗᏒ ᏥᎪᏩᏘᎲ, ᎯᎩᎾᎵᎢ, ᎠᏓᎯᏍᏗ ᎨᏐ. Uwagvdisv tsigowatihv, higinali'i , adahisdi geso (I've seen the future brother, it is murder.)
imaginary friend
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Re: Crybaby

Post by imaginary friend » Sat Apr 11, 2009 3:42 am

Hi Alice,

I consider myself a beginner. I appreciate your feedback, but I'm not clear on it's meaning.

What was your message when quoting Loudon Wainwright's song... was it:

- An example of great handling of a similar subject? (I could only agree, if so!)
- Were you suggesting I re-work? (some more specific detail please, if so)
- Were you saying Crybaby was hopeless and I should take up knitting instead? :cry:

I have some thoughts re re-working CB, which I may not have thought of, without input/ feedback received here. I'm sincere in requesting criticism, I'm not in the least offended or hurt, and I would appreciate if you could clarify your comments.

Thanks!
imaginary friend
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Re: Crybaby

Post by imaginary friend » Sat Apr 11, 2009 5:01 am

OK here's version 2.

She waits in the schoolyard,
alone
except for the old man
wetting down the day's dust
on the playground.

Humming obsessively,*
she summons
the car; willing it to appear
where it's supposed to be
at the end of the bedraggled day.

Holding it at bay:
the dread
that today – this day – is the one
when he will not come;
when finally, he's forgotten her.

Alone now, the old man
gone,
she runs out of pretend.
Picks up her bag of books, steps out
along the busy road, the forbidden walk.

The car pulls up, abruptly;
‘Get in.’
Relief, rejection, shame – she pushes back hard,
but they swim up anyway,
spill down dirty, seven year-old cheeks.

'Crybaby' he mutters, realizing he has
crossed a line,
exposed himself.
She faces the window, begins to explore
the shell hardening around her crybaby heart.

*Humming distractedly? Humming to distract herself?
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Re: Crybaby

Post by News Gal » Sat Apr 11, 2009 5:09 am

Either is good, I liked it the first time around. Some people hum when they're nervous, so I assumed the poor little girl is doing that.
ᎤᏩᎬᏗᏒ ᏥᎪᏩᏘᎲ, ᎯᎩᎾᎵᎢ, ᎠᏓᎯᏍᏗ ᎨᏐ. Uwagvdisv tsigowatihv, higinali'i , adahisdi geso (I've seen the future brother, it is murder.)
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lizzytysh
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Re: Crybaby

Post by lizzytysh » Sat Apr 11, 2009 6:38 am

The first time is what suits me best, Sheila... for me, the second feels overworked. Aaron's comment suits me, too... "this is an excellent poem - powerful emotionally and intellectually."
For me, your first went far enough and didn't need to go any further. It was clear, concise... powerful.

I agree with your comments, NewsGal... regarding the attitudes. I wouldn't feel nearly so much that way if this section were called the Poetry Workshop. Still, critiques and comments can still be couched in and delivered with respect.


~ Lizzy
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
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