Unforgiven

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Thread: Unforgiven

  1. #1

    Unforgiven

    She apologised so easily,
    the word slipping from her tongue,
    Sorry! and she would smile
    that small accusatory smile,
    Can’t you take a joke?


    In the end he never spoke,
    buried the barbs she fired from her tongue
    with harboured resentment
    that festered and burned,
    he had learned he couldn’t win.


    He died from self-inflicted wounds
    in line with their mutual belief
    that all his grief was rooted
    and rebooted in and by
    his wanton insufficiency.



    Version Two

    She apologised so easily,
    the word slipped from her tongue,
    Sorry! and she would smile
    that small accusatory smile,
    Can’t you take a joke?


    In the end he never spoke,
    buried the barbs she fired
    with harboured resentment
    that festered and burned.
    He had learned he couldn’t win.


    He died from self-inflicted wounds,
    in line with their mutual belief
    that all his grief was rooted
    and grown in his own
    wanton insufficiency.




    Last edited by jenthepen; June 9th, 2019 at 07:48 PM.

  2. #2
    Lovely poem, Jen and one I feel with.
    In S1L2 make it: words gliding.
    in L3: is ‘and’ needed?

    in S2L2: is ‘she’ needed?

    Very soft but proverbial poem. Great last line.
    "Illegitimi non carborundum " Vinegar' Joe Stilwell

    "Faith is taking the first step, even when you don't see the whole staircase." Martin Luther King Jr.

    What you learn in life is important, those you help learn, are more important.

    "They can because they think they can."
    ​Virgil

    "Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools will speak to say something." Plato

    "The only difference between reality and fiction is that fiction needs to be credible."
    ​ Mark Twain

    "To those of you who received honors, awards and distinctions, I say well done. And to the C students, I say you, too, can be president of the United States." George W. Bush



  3. #3
    That is a sad poem Jen, it is a great poem!
    I don't have many remarks, only what I noticed below, in red.


    Quote Originally Posted by jenthepen View Post
    She apologised so easily,
    the word slipping from her tongue,
    Sorry! and she would smile
    that small accusatory smile,
    Canít you take a joke?


    In the end he never spoke,
    buried the barbs she fired from her tongue <-- you have the exact same phrase in S1
    with harboured resentment
    that festered and burned,
    he had learned he couldnít win.


    He died from self-inflicted wounds
    in line with their mutual belief
    that all his grief was rooted
    (and rebooted) in and by <-- that rhymes, but do you really need it?
    his wanton insufficiency.
    Hidden Content Hidden Content

    I am a clay potato in a strawberry field
    -Darren White, from "Clumsy"

  4. #4
    Member Thomas Norman's Avatar
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    Hi Jen, loving the mood you've created with this poem. It says what's needed in short time. The man struck down by words alone, if only! The sharpness of the idea is upheld by the conviction and language. I have a couple of suggestions you might like to think about.

    S1 L2 I feel 'slipping' is weak given the later line calling the word 'barbs'. Shouldn't that be singular as it is given as one word in S1? Perhaps 'shot' or 'burst' note past tense.
    It should be a full stop at the end of L3.

    S2 L2 you don't need 'from her tongue' you've said that you might even drop 'she' too.

    S3 L4 'and rebooted' is unnecessary, and a bit twee.

    A really good poem with real bite. T.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Pelwrath View Post
    Lovely poem, Jen and one I feel with.
    In S1L2 make it: words gliding.
    in L3: is ‘and’ needed?

    in S2L2: is ‘she’ needed?

    Very soft but proverbial poem. Great last line.
    Thanks for the read, pel. In the first stanza, the word is 'sorry' so not 'words' and I want to keep the word 'and' in the third line because the smile is intimately related to the word sorry and I didn't want to suggest that she was being kind. I thought your suggestion about removing 'she' from S2L2 was a great idea but then I read Darren's critique and realised I had used the same phrase twice in that line and so needed to change it more radically.

    Thank you for taking the time to read my poem so closely - that's appreciated. Many thanks for the kind words too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Darren White View Post
    That is a sad poem Jen, it is a great poem!
    I don't have many remarks, only what I noticed below, in red.
    Thanks, Darren. I hadn't noticed that I had used the same phrase twice so thanks for pointing that out. The other line that you mentioned was worrying me when I wrote it and Thomas has picked up on it too so that's for a rewrite.

    Many thanks for taking the time to offer some good advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Norman View Post
    Hi Jen, loving the mood you've created with this poem. It says what's needed in short time. The man struck down by words alone, if only! The sharpness of the idea is upheld by the conviction and language. I have a couple of suggestions you might like to think about.

    S1 L2 I feel 'slipping' is weak given the later line calling the word 'barbs'. Shouldn't that be singular as it is given as one word in S1? Perhaps 'shot' or 'burst' note past tense.
    It should be a full stop at the end of L3.

    S2 L2 you don't need 'from her tongue' you've said that you might even drop 'she' too.

    S3 L4 'and rebooted' is unnecessary, and a bit twee.

    A really good poem with real bite. T.
    Thanks for the positive comments and sound critique Thomas. I think I can defend my use of the word 'slipping' in the first stanza. I wanted to portray the way she so casually apologises for some hurtful comment that she has made - it's the word 'sorry' that slips from her tongue not the barbed comments - and I have tried to underline the insincerity of her apology with the image of the small accusatory smile, implying that his reaction is unreasonable, not her nastiness.

    I agree with everything else you say and I'm ready to post an edited version of the original poem with some changes based on the critiques I've received. Many thanks.

    Jen

  6. #6
    Jen - Some men have been conditioned to give up easily and some women know it when they do. To run from your demons is to have them pursue you when it's a lot better to advance and meet them in their world than to retreat and have them enter yours where you can often die from exposure. Intriguing work about our human natures Jen. Makes you think and I liked that. Namyh

  7. #7
    I quite liked the concept that you illustrated Jen, and I do believe that it holds some power. Some men have been decimated by conditioning (as Namyh has said) and, when faced with their imperfections, give up on things. I felt that you illustrated this really well (barbs) and that your final stanza was particularly haunting and telling (in a good way, of course!)

    Thanks for sharing!
    ďAs far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being,"

    -Carl Jung

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Namyh View Post
    Jen - Some men have been conditioned to give up easily and some women know it when they do. To run from your demons is to have them pursue you when it's a lot better to advance and meet them in their world than to retreat and have them enter yours where you can often die from exposure. Intriguing work about our human natures Jen. Makes you think and I liked that. Namyh
    Thank you for your thoughtful critique, Namyh. You are right, I think, about the conditioning that can impair our lives. I believe that self-esteem is the one important thing that parents should gift to their children and, although it can be a complex and difficult job, I think that teaching respect - for yourself as well as others - goes a long way towards creating self-esteem.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bard_Daniel View Post
    I quite liked the concept that you illustrated Jen, and I do believe that it holds some power. Some men have been decimated by conditioning (as Namyh has said) and, when faced with their imperfections, give up on things. I felt that you illustrated this really well (barbs) and that your final stanza was particularly haunting and telling (in a good way, of course!)

    Thanks for sharing!
    Thanks for the encouraging comments, Daniel. You have picked out all the important points in this poem and explained the essence of it better than I could. Thank you!

  9. #9
    This poem could well be the definition of emotional abuse.... all the small, seemingly joking barbs, with cruel intent... words hurt and do irreparable damage to the very core of our being... how terribly sad to live like that, day by day being emotionally murdered...
    She lost herself in the trees,
    among the ever-changing leaves.
    She wept beneath the wild sky
    as stars told stories of ancient times.
    The flowers grew toward her light,
    the river called her name at night.
    She could not live an ordinary life,
    with the mysteries of the universe
    hidden in her eyes....
    Author: Christy Ann Martine

    Death leaves a heartache no one can heal,
    love leaves a memory no one can steal....
    Author unknown.

  10. #10
    Emotional murder - if only all the people who dish out this form of cruelty in the name of fun or unthinking sarcasm could hear that definition. Thank you for your wisdom and understanding my friend.

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