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Let's Have Some Poems


REVISION 1

Let’s have some poems –
he placed the order.

How would you like them, Sir,
medium, rare or well-done?

Rare, of course, no poem is done
till it drips of blood.

Succulent but firm, it’s the chewing
that tenders the meat.

Ask your chef please, one hot sizzle
will do the trick, the fires within

and not without, will do the rest.
Cheers! The light caught the rim,

split his smile in two, like the devil
in the Smirnoff ad - who

suddenly grows a pair of fangs.
And for the lady…?

I turned to the beauteous vision
in red. Make mine well-done,

all this talk of flesh and blood,
makes my stomach churn.

The tip of her ruby tongue, suspended,
like a pendent, between rows of pearls.

Ah! Yes, the wine…French, of course,
he winked, Baudelaire 1859.

A wine with bawdy and zest, downs
the toughest simile, epithet and all rest…

Some dessert...? I ventured,
after all that heat, some sweet?

Winking his wink back at him, his grin
was broad and open, full of the school-boy,

he once was. Our crepe suzettes are to die for,
crisp on the outside…simply melting…

Perfecto, make it quick, all this talk of cream
and meat, increases my hunger tenfold.

I hurried inside to place the order:
four poems - one rare, one well done,

one to be drunk, one to be savored
on ruby red tongues.

Lo and behold! I soon returned:
two silver platters on each arm,

one bearing Kubla khan –
the vapors that rose from Xanadu,

made him moan with sheer delight.
Ah! That sunny dome, those caves of ice!

Supped full of Coleridge’s rhymes,
he rose and weaved a circle thrice

and shrieked like a man possessed:
‘beware beware my flashing eyes,

my floating hair, for I on honey dew
hath fed and drunk the milk of paradise.’

As for his lady love, seemingly simpering
of disposition, I sensed, had nerves of steel.

With a resounding thwack,
I placed on her table Sylvia Plath.

None-o’- that country jargon for me.
I prefer mine with a lethal dose of the urban.

All honey and sweet she turned to him,
I can answer thee beware for beware:

‘out of the ash I rise with my red hair
and I eat men like air.’

All this was downed with Baudelaire.
To add to their fun, I presented with a flourish –

John Donne. The great metaphysical,
flambéed so lyrical, melting…

the iron will of many-a-maiden:
‘O my America, my Newfoundland…

…why then, what needst thou have
more covering than a man?’

Now I run a place of my own, my tools
sharp, I cut and trim with great precision

and serve them fresh on all occasions.
Just tell me how you’d like yours please:

Wasteland pie with ****inson
meringue?


ORIGINAL:

Let’s have some poems –
he placed the order.

How would you like them, Sir,
medium, rare or well-done?

Rare of course, no poem is done
till it drips of blood.

Succulent but firm, it’s the chewing
that tenders the meat.

Ask your chef please, one hot sizzle
will do the trick, the fires within

and not without, will do the rest.
Cheers! The light caught the rim,

split his smile in two, like the devil
in the Smirnoff ad, who,

suddenly grows a pair of fangs.
As for the lady…?

I turned to the beauteous vision
in red. Make mine well-done,

all this talk of flesh and blood
makes my stomach churn.

She smiled. Her teeth gleamed
like moonlight.

The tip of her ruby tongue, suspended,
like a pendent, between rows of pearls.

A bit squeamish…eh? A sly wink
accompanied his nod that will be all…

Ah! Yes, the wine…French, of course,
Baudelaire 1859.

A wine with bawdy and zest,
downs the toughest simile,

epithet and all rest, Once again the wink.
Some dessert…? I ventured,

after all that heat, some sweet?
Winking his wink back at him.

His grin was broad and open now,
full of the school-boy, he once was.

Our crepe suzettes are to die for,
crisp on the outside…simply melting…

Perfecto, make it quick, all this talk ofcream
and meat, has increased my hunger tenfold.

I hurried inside to place the order,
four poems: one rare, one well done,

one to be drunk, one to be savored
on ruby red tongues.

Lo and behold! I soon returned:
two silver platters on each arm,

one bearing Kubla khan –
the vapors that rose from Xanadu,

made him moan with sheer delight.
Ah! That sunny dome, those caves of ice!

Supped full of Coleridge’s rhymes,
he rose and weaved a circle thrice

and shrieked like a man possessed:
‘beware beware my flashing eyes,

my floating hair, for I on honey dew
hath fed and drunk the milk of paradise.’

As for his lady love, seemingly simpering
of disposition, I sensed, had nerves of steel.

With a resounding thwack,
I placed on her table Sylvia Plath.


None-o’-that-country-jargon for me.
She smiled well pleased

I prefer mine with a lethal dose
of the urban.

All honey and sweet, she turned to him:
I can answer thee beware for beware,

‘out of the ash I rise with my red hair
and I eat men like hair.’

All this was downed with Baudelaire:
‘we ride off, mounted on wine

toward an enchanted and God-like sky.’
Who else but a poet can think:

virtues as artificial things
vices as natural springs?

He sang with great delight.
I knew they were having the time-o’-their-lives.

To add to their fun, I presented
with a flourish – John Donne.

The great metaphysical, flambéed so lyrical,
the lines crisp, the meaning soft and tender

melting…the iron-will of many-a-maiden:
O, my America, my Newfoundland…

How am I blest in thus discovering thee…
To enter in these bonds is to be free…

Now I run a place of my own, my tools
sharp, I cut and trim with great precision,

and serve them fresh, on all occasions,
just tell me how you’d like yours please:

Wasteland pie with Dickinson
Meringue?




Last edited by queenfisher, May/30/2013, 3:45 am
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Bernie01 Profile
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Re: Let's have some poems


Queenfisher---

an older poem?

the exended metaphor, the direct address. i like the mock serousness, even an undertow of drama i could not immediately fix.

for no clear reason i thought of Robert Browning, My Last Duchess---


That's my last Duchess painted on the wall, Looking as if she were alive. I call. That piece a wonder, now: Fra Pandolf's hands. Worked busily a day, and there ...

the poem remains clear and manages to avoid driving the extended metaphor of poetry and food into the ground.

lot's of imagination.

so often, a poem like this sinks or swims with tone and image---the tone seemed sustained, but several attempts at imaging fell short for me. the poem's diction seems to favor an earlier, even Victorian period; if so, this seemed a jar:

like the devil
in the Smirnoff ad...


here,

...beauteous vision...


alas, too familliar here---

She smiled. Her teeth gleamed
like moonlight.


here, you cook with fractured natural gas:

The tip of her ruby tongue, suspended,
like a pendent, between rows of pearls.


excellent.

and these line are especially nice:


Lo and behold! I soon returned:
two silver platters on each arm,

one bearing Kubla khan –
the vapors that rose from Xanadu,

made him moan with sheer delight.
Ah! That sunny dome, those caves of ice!

Supped full of Coleridge’s rhymes,
he rose and weaved a circle thrice...




why the repeat of hair:


my floating hair


out of the ash I rise with my red hair
and I eat men like hair...


my floating hair, for I on honey dew
hath fed and drunk the milk of paradise.


...out of the ash I rise with my red hair
and I eat men like hair...




i liked the idea of matching customers to a particular poet, i might consider a little more of that.

fum poem.

we all have a vision of Tom Jones, the film or the novel, in mind. good association.

bernie


and here, Zola's two pages about cheese in one of his novels:


Beneath the stall show-table, formed of a slab of red marble veined with grey, baskets of eggs gleamed with a chalky whiteness; while on layers of straw in boxes were Bondons, placed end to end, and Gournays, arranged like medals, forming darker patches tinted with green. But it was upon the table that the cheeses appeared in greatest profusion. Here, by the side of the pound-rolls of butter lying on white-beet leaves, spread a gigantic Cantal cheese, cloven here and there as by an axe; then came a golden-hued Cheshire, and next a Gruyere, resembling a wheel fallen from some barbarian chariot; whilst farther on were some Dutch cheeses, suggesting decapitated heads suffused with dry blood, and having all that hardness of skulls which in France has gained them the name of “death’s heads.” Amidst the heavy exhalations of these, a Parmesan set a spicy aroma. Then there came three Brie cheeses displayed on round platters, and looking like melancholy extinct moons. Two of them, very dry, were at the full; the third, in its second quarter, was melting away in a white cream, which had spread into a pool and flowed over the little wooden barriers with which an attempt had been made to arrest its course….The Roqueforts under their glass covers also had a princely air, their fat faces marbled with blue and yellow, as though they were suffering from some unpleasant malady such as attacks the wealthy gluttons who eat too many truffles. And on a dish by the side of these, the hard grey goats’ milk cheeses, about the size of a child’s fist, resembled the pebbles which the billy-goats send rolling down the stony paths as they clamber along ahead of their flocks. Next came the strong smelling cheeses: the Mont d’Ors, of a bright yellow hue, and exhaling a comparatively mild odor; the Troyes, very thick, and bruised at the edges, and of a far more pungent smell, recalling the dampness of a cellar; the Camemberts, suggestive of high game; the square Neufchatels, Limbourgs, Marolles, and Pont l’Eveques, each adding its own particular sharp scent to the malodorous bouquet, till it became perfectly pestilential; the Livarots, ruddy in hue, and as irritating to the throat as sulphur fumes; and, lastly, stronger than all the others, the Olivets, wrapped in walnut leaves, like the carrion which peasants cover with branches as it lies rotting in the hedgerow under the blazing sun.












Last edited by Bernie01, Mar/6/2013, 6:25 pm


---
Fall

Bob Grenier: the leaves / falling / out of the / water by the / table
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Katlin Profile
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Re: Let's have some poems


Hi queenfisher,

Very witty poem about poetry that only a poet could write. emoticon The poem is lightly done (excuse the pun) and yet the meaning in the lines is layered. I loved it when the various poets/poems were introduced as I hadn't been expecting that. It is fun to read the poem a second time, identifying poetic devices like puns, half-rhymes, etc. The thwack/Plath couplet made me laugh. I also like the way the poem ends with the N running a place of her own now. Perfect. I can see this as a scene from a play: an outrageous comedy about poets with lots of inside jokes and serious undertones.

Well done (ahem)! emoticon
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Re: Let's have some poems


Wow, Queen, this is just so so much FUN. I loved it and will read it again. I, too, love the appearance of the poems on the platters. The metaphor works and the diabolical (somehow) wit just tickles me. So many great moments and such flair.

Wanted to mention that:
I think you mean "unless it drips" with blood (when you talk about the rare poem) -- "till" implies that it is cooked until it drips with blood, but rare is cooked hardly at all (which you allude to later), thus the best preposition seems to be unless.

I think you meant "And for the lady" instead of "as" -- the N is wanting to take her order. Though really the lady should have ordered first. emoticon Usually the way in fancy pants restaurants!

The Plath line is "eat men like air" -- but maybe you said "hair" on purpose, but it seemed like a typo maybe.

Not to nitpick -- these just struck me in an otherwise fantastic poem that pulled me along with it every step of the way.

Yay! Thanks.
vkp
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What an enjoyable read! The conceit should not have worked, taking poetry as a several course dinner, but it absolutely does. Working in couplets should not have worked either, but it charmingly does. Couplets are so damn hard to get right. They have to work as self-contained stanzaic units while simultaneously building towards the next one. Not that the poem needs more to it, but frankly I did not want it to end. Queen, this is a smart poem. Smart as in a smartly dressed poem or woman. The Plath usage has already been pointed to. Excellent touch there. But the bottle of Baudelaire wine is where I'm won over. That is exquisite. In a second post I'll link to a famous Baudelaire prose poem to demonstrate why. I can find no problems with the poem. But almost forgot. Once again you operate in the range of vers libres, what seems to be your metier, and at which you excell. Let me go a bit stupidly pedantic on you:

"It (vers liberes) abandoned certain traditional principles; especially the rules which prescribed recurrent metrical patterns and a certain number of syllables per line. Rhythm, and the division of verse into rhythmical units, was held to be the essential foundation of poetic form. This rhythm was to be personal, the particular expression of the individual poet." (italics mine) I can't know if you intended as much but by working in vers libres your poem manages to include, even inculcate, probably the most famous practitioner of the form: Eliot. Either the touch is masterly or serendipitous.

This is a poem I wish I was capable of making.

Tere
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I cannot find a link to a good presentation of the Baudelaire prose poem I have in mind and why I think Queen's bottle of Baudelaire is just the right touch. So I'm typing it to the screen from my copy of his Paris Spleen, a book I've had since I was something like 22.


Get Drunk

~One should always be drunk. That's the great thing; the only question. Not to feel the horrible burden of Time weighing on your shoulders and bowing you to the earth, you should be drunk without respite.

Drunk with what? With wine, with poetry, or with virtue, as you please. But get drunk.

And if sometimes you should happen to awake, on the stairs of a palace, on the green grass of a ditch, in the dreary solitude of your own room, and find that your drunkenness is ebbing or has vanished, ask the wind and the wave, ask star, bird, or clock, ask everything that flies, everything that moans, everything that flows, everything that sings, everything that speaks, ask them the time; and the wind, the wave, the star, the bird and the clock will all reply: "It is Time to get drunk! If you are not to be the martyred slaves of Time, be perpetually drunk! With wine, with poetry, or with virtue, as you please."~

Queen, I'm persuaded you know what you are doing.

Tere
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Queenfisher,

You seem to have an angle on many of the significant poets. It all struck me as tongue-in-cheek, with a bit of seriousness, especially toward the end. The narrator says, "It's the chewing that tenders the meat." I believe this is a poem that while decidedly light in its trajectory, would probably reveal more than a few pearls with some more chewing. Thank you for posting this for us. Zak
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thank you all for reading & i'm glad it added to your fun - a fun a day keeps the doc away - more would keep more doc's at bay!

i did write a series of stuff about poems / poets - which i must post sometime.

dear bernie - you always give more then mere comments / critique - which is very welcome - so much to learn from them

thanks katlin - this was sent to make you smile / laugh - i'm glad it did - this reminds me of a story about the princess whose father declared the hand of her daughter in marriage to the suiter who could make her laugh! altho i'm no suiter haha! but you're a princess!
i've made no links for my pictures but will try & learn soon - maybe picassa album or something - i'm very techically challenged - have some gorgeous pictures of ladakh & angkor wat as well - & i'm off this wed on a 15 day driving trip to Rajasthan visiting old palaces & forts & staying in them - luckily this time we have some friends - excellent photographers - who will be recording the trip - which i will def. send - i'm a very lazy photographer.

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dear tere

thank you so much for your generous comments

drunk exactly - i did want the readers to get drunk on this! & yes you're very right - we must & should be constantly drunk - on wine on life - from the sea to the sky & everything that comes between below above behind - remember the lines from donne: on his mistress going to bed? -donne's quote is from the same poem.

anyway speaking of wine the south african wine is really good. & yes baudelaire i read was very fond of wine - those are his quotes: we ride off mounted on wine....
i love your quote on getting drunk - it's jewels like these that keeps the writing process ticking & rewarding.

i don't know much about the technical aspects of writing - rhythm meter etc in fact the spelling of rhythm always eludes me for some mysterious reason - but then spelling was never my strong point. i'm just itching to send you a humungous poem on the very subject of poets/ rhyme meter etc a very serious spoof mind you on the subject as i had to do immense amount of research work to get to the technical terms etc. but will send it after i'm back next month from my grand driving tour into the desert with it's sumptuous forts & palaces & will be back with sumptuous pictures which i will post.

yes there was more to the poem about odd combos with an ode or two on the side served inside a grecian urn...etc etc. but there has to be a limit to the nonsensical fun one can have or should have!

right now i'm reading a book by Dali on Dali & feeling a bit mad! although in his famous quote he says: the only difference between a madman & me is that i'm not mad!

but this other poem i mentioned - knows no boundaries - crosses all limits - after i'm back - to the sprucing machine it will go & come out smartly dressed! so that you can say once again: Queen this is a smart poem!

in the meantime you take care & may you stay forever drunk!
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dear vkp

thanks for your sharp smart observations - have made a note of it & will correct it.

that will have to be: unless it drips with blood

you're right about the other point too - and instead of as & yes the lady orders first - but maybe N here taking the orders is so taken up by the gentleman & chats him up that both forget about the lady!

& yes i must re-check the plath quote it's prob. air not hair - so that's a mistake - not deliberate of course you cannot misqoute a quote if it's in quotes.

thanks for your super close microscopic read - it is a diabolical poem is it not? that tickles me too!
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thanks zak for looking in - love your comments about the chewing bit!

will be getting to your poem & other wonderful posts later - don't want to give a hurried response.

hope you're doing well.
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Dear Katlin

I've done a revision with some editting & correction.

would like some inputs from anyone for further revision re punctuation / grammar etc.

have done caps in the title.

let me know how it's working.

thanks
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Hi queenfisher,

I like the changes you've made to tighten up the poem. Yes, to the title in all caps. I see you corrected the Plath quote. Good. Wondering about the other correction vkp suggested:

unless it drips with blood

instead of

til it drips of blood

Although I confess, I didn't catch the problem there despite a number of readings.
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hi kat

have corrected - drips

i'm staying with till - i think it's an acceptable word.

if there's anything else let me know
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