dVerse –MTB–Recline within the Inimitable Beauty of Gestalt

tolerance
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Original:

Rest in the Peace of the Meadow

Us and them, sliced on and on
into ever thinner shards, until
the world is bloody ground glass.

Is that what you see when you
look at a meadow? No. Look
how many pieces to a tree.

Each blade of grass together
makes a cushion to lie down
and rest upon. You may enjoy

The flowers of the field without
picking them. Allow their faces
to turn to the sun, bees to sip.

Wherever you are in the land-
scape, know that each precious
brushstroke creates masterpiece.

After Revisions:

Recline within the Inimitable Beauty of Gestalt

Air-angels and mud-clingers are minced on and on
into ever-more indistinguishable meat-shreds, until
the life-platter stinks with rancid ground death-mass.

Is that what owl orbs discover when soul
viewers behold spirit-gifts? No. Marvel at
how many magic-shifts to a sequoia

Blades of bluegrass world-weaving together
conjure a velva-cushion to recline
and respite upon. Lifebearers may envelop

sweetpeas of the greenmeadow without unearthing
them from trajectories. Concede their pollened potential to
bask and sway with the lightgiver in unmolested guzzling.

Wherever pinpointed in the lifescape,
know that each textured inimitable
vitality cultivates gestaltic benediction.

Reflections/learnings:
When I look at both poems, it feels like the original was a concept and the revised version was the concept developed. The revision uses a much more vivid palette of words which makes it feel more lush and expressive.  With the time I had/took for this exercise, evening out the line lengths didn’t happen; the revised version looks less uniform.

Peter Frankis is today’s host of dVerse. Peter says:
So, to our exercise…

  1. Pick a poem you’ve already written — a favourite, one that needs a second look, one that never reached its full potential (choose a shorter one for tonight’s exercise). This is the ‘before poem’.

  2. Make a copy and give it the “Bök test” – highlight all the nouns – could they be more concrete, more specific? ; now do the same with the verbs — can they be more active? Now do the same with the adjectives & adverbs…

  3. Look for the uncanny – can you find a ‘rainforest of chandeliers’, ‘a sky as blue as a car accident,’ ‘a speech as hard as a machine gun’?

  4. Publish both poems – the ‘before’ and ‘after’ – on your blog.

  5. Optional – add your reflections/learnings

35 Comments Add yours

  1. lillian says:

    Wow! That first stanza sure changed into a much more powerful grab-the-reader stanza! I especially like some of the word-choices in the second one….owl orbs and velva-cushion – these are both unique and so right on in their description! Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      🙂 Lillian, thank you and glad you liked them.

      Like

  2. I feel that the second version went a little bit over the top with all the compound images, but I like a lot the image of a battlefield you create in the first stanza. In all, I agree the concept became clearer in the second version.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you for the feedback, Bjorn. For a first “cat editing” it was fun to do.

      Like

  3. kim881 says:

    Both poems speak to me but I like the simpler original version better, Lisa, I agree about the original poem being a concept but the revised version muddied the water for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Kim, thank you for the feedback. I think I got overzealous.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. kim881 says:

        Nothing wrong with being overzealous. We don’t have to stop at one revision. Somewhere between the two there is a sweet spot that only noodling around with the versions can find.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. It’s the simple directness of the first version that appeals to me. Maybe I’m just lazy but I don’t like to have to dig out the meaning. Maybe one or two of those rich, inventive images would do?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you for the feedback, Jane. I’ll revisit it somewhere along the way and try to tweak it to a gleam.

      Like

      1. I tend to go with the less is more rule, but it depends what kind of poem you’re writing and what effect you want it to have. Both versions are valid.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Lucy says:

    I love both versions of this piece, but I definitely concur that the second one has a much more varied palette in word-choice, descriptions, and syntax. Your first one drew me in immediately with the first stanza; it had me entranced. However, the second one has much more evocative essence to it (I’m almost comparing it to magic, actually), and it maintains that mood for the rest of the poem. Not a critique, but my thoughts. 😉 I love how descriptive the second one is. My heart beats for long poetry-prose. ❤ Beautiful and stunning work here—both pieces.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks much for your thoughts, Lucy!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. There are wonderful sounds in your ‘after’ – a bit Gerard Manley Hopkinsey – ‘Air-angels and mud-clingers are minced on and on’ – ‘blades of bluegrass world weaving’ – There’s the breathless dynamic energy of a summer field bursting out of the lines in the ‘after’ poem, which makes your ‘before’ poem appear stately and neat. Bravo and thanks so much for sharing this.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Many thanks, Peter, for the feedback.

      Like

  7. I think this is a very interesting exercise. I preferred the first poem – I think maybe you got a bit over-enthusiastic with the second one? But that doesn’t matter – the practise is the purpose of this, and sometimes it’s good to go way over the top, stretch ourselves in different directions.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      I agree it is a very interesting exercise and appreciate your comments about the process of it, Sarah.

      Like

  8. sanaarizvi says:

    The thing I love about dVerse MTB is how we learn to hone our skills and learn something new. 🙂 This is a beautiful edit though I too prefer the first poem. 💝

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Sanaa thank you for your thoughts and feedback on it.

      Like

  9. I like the first one, its more natural .

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks for your feedback, Bernie.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I love how you entered into this exercise with such commitment, Lisa. I really admire how willing you were to completely release the first version, which can be so hard to do! My favorite is the first one, exploring how ridiculous the us versus them becomes (one of my favorite themes.)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      Victoria thank you and I know you understand the feeling against us v them.

      Like

  11. rivrvlogr says:

    You revision gives this more intensity.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks Ken, I did rev it way up didn’t I.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Sadje says:

    Both poems are great. I love the first one better.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks Sadje, I’m somewhere between the two.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sadje says:

        You’re welcome! The imagery the first poem awoke was soothing.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. Ingrid says:

    I enjoyed both poems Lisa, but I really love the first one! I think the devices you employed in the second are great but I don’t think this poem needed it: it really is so beautiful! You can always try the exercise again with a poem you’re less happy with – because you must’ve been happy with this one?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Ingrid thank you for the feedback. As to picking a poem, my organization of my writing is less than good, so I scrolled through a number of them before picking this one, which I like but thought why not try to tweak it for the exercise.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Each of the versions carries their own charm. While I prefer the direct tenderness of the first one, I appreciate the textures you added on your second version. Perhaps a bit lesser compounds words would give a better balance but definitely adore how you have gone beyond and painted a new world in this prompt, Ms. Jade!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you much for your feedback.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Each version stands strong on its own. I favor the first one, but the second one really went deep. Great word artistry, Lisa!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. The first version caused me to rest comfortably as I read it. I felt the beauty in its simplicity. The second I had to sort through the words. And then I had to recline and find rest. I am drawn to the simple.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Nice way of comparing the two, Mary. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on them.

      Like

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