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magyproductions Profile
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I Am Still


I Am Still
(an unrhymed sonnet)

Perfection shifts away in human eyes.
Capstone of evolution, prodigal
children of God: we always notice flaws.
We see debris in darkness, never stars.

My heart is silly, not designed to fight.
I cannot brace myself against judgment.
I hide: withdraw into a sawdust stall
to find the hush a horse can give my mind.

Next to a horse, a hand against the smooth
hairs, the expanse of muscle, pulsing blood—
the impulse to apologize grows dim.
A horse can see my anxious heart and ease it.

With humans, worry gathers, haunts and dwells.
Horses soften the world—and I am still.

Oct/22/2012, 9:15 pm Link to this post Send Email to magyproductions   Send PM to magyproductions Blog
 
vkp Profile
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Re: I Am Still


This is the first sonnet from you on the board, isn't it Magy? I have enjoyed writing in this form in the past and know its challenges, with or without rhyme. The metrics can be most irksome.

Some lines here really stand out to me. Describing humans as you do, a bit sardonically, as the "capstone of evolution" -- it's good.

The second two quatrains are my favorites.
quote:

the impulse to apologize grows dim.
A horse can see my anxious heart and ease it

These lines evoke the feeling I imagine you are going for-- what a horse can do that no human can, at least for you.

I also love the last line:
quote:

Horses soften the world—and I am still.

It is lovely and flows effortlessly.

A few suggestions or nitpicks:
The first line troubles me. I get what you are saying but not well enough -- or have to work at it too much, or else it seems like the poem is working too hard there. Not going to hazard a suggestion, but I feel as if the first line could be stronger to lead us in to the poem. It's really the only line I have issue with.

In the first line of the third quatrain the words "next to" seem clumsy to me and also have two readings -- you mean "beside" (as in physically near) but "next to" can also mean "in comparison to". Even though this is a comparing poem, this line is not about comparison but about being near a horse, and thus I'd go with "beside", which still works with the iambics.

One small tiny microscopic thing also in that line: I'd use "my hand" instead of "a hand".

Anyway, this is a very good poem and I am so happy you posted it!
vkp

Last edited by vkp, Oct/24/2012, 8:59 am
Oct/23/2012, 9:29 am Link to this post Send Email to vkp   Send PM to vkp Blog
 
Christine98 Profile
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Re: I Am Still


hi magy,

Well, I read this poem and then I read vkp's comments and have nothing to say but, "what she said."

That last line is stunning. Really.

Chris
Oct/24/2012, 8:36 am Link to this post Send Email to Christine98   Send PM to Christine98
 
Katlin Profile
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Re: I Am Still


Hi magy,

It's wonderful to see you posting again and with such a strong poetic offering! I like the scope of the first stanza and the way the rest of the poem provides an answer/antidote to the troublesome observations raised. I also like vkp's suggestions regarding "beside" and "my" and agree the first line could be improved.

My favorite lines:

I hide: withdraw into a sawdust stall
to find the hush a horse can give my mind.

Love that "hush a horse can give my mind."

Very good poem; thank you for posting it.
Oct/24/2012, 7:13 pm Link to this post Send Email to Katlin   Send PM to Katlin
 
queenfisher Profile
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Re: I Am Still


dear magy

love the lines:

 we always notice flaws.
We see debris in darkness, never stars.

love the way the horse / animal juxtaposed against humans - we've come a long way learning from them!

specially the last line - epitomises it:

Horses soften the world—and I am still.

Oct/26/2012, 1:27 am Link to this post Send Email to queenfisher   Send PM to queenfisher Blog
 
Terreson Profile
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Re: I Am Still


Not much given to commenting on a poem's prosody, what I figure is a mechanical matter and the poet's private business. But I am struck by the poem's sense of IP. It comes across as effortless, natural. Single use of enjambment stands out delightfully.

Poem itself I get in my bones. With people I can get loneliness and the empty feeling. With animals never.

Tere
Oct/28/2012, 11:47 am Link to this post Send Email to Terreson   Send PM to Terreson
 


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