Hello children, everywhere
Have you thought about the poetry challenge? I can't be sure but I think anyone can set them and they can be any kind of poetry on any subject and with any rules. I've never gone in for them myself but I know quite a few here do. The heading is here in the forums or is it fora? I'm never sure about that one. Anyway, worth a try. I might even enter.
Unhappy lie the bones
of old Robert Jones
as do those of Nathanial Wallace
But happy, by there,
lies young Malcolm Adair
in whom both young widows took solace.
In life she chose
to live alone,
did Ada Mary Harris.
should mark her stone,
sour spinster of this parish.
Here lies Morgan
buried with his organ
that he played in church every day
though he’s deep underground
he’ll probably be found
happily playing away.
My name is Jack Jones
I lived my life
and lived it bloody well
I drank too much,
deceived my wife.
I’ve likely gone to hell.
Lord Emmanuel Grey,
now he is dead,
lies close beside his wife.
Much closer in death,
so it is said
than ever they lay in life.
Beside the church,
in pride of place,
lies diocesan Bishop Hay
A brewery cart
dismissed his grace,
too pissed to get out of the way.
Pauper Tom’s grave
is somewhere near,
A simple, unmarked stone.
In life and death
it seems, my dear
the poor are left alone.
There you go. That should get you started.
I was looking at one of your pieces the other day, the one about giving 'Haitch Queue a bairing' and that is one thing I cannot abide; the aspiration of 'H' in the word 'aitch'. It gets me so angry. Can people not examine the root of the word? But that is speech and I'm rather more rigid with speech. I suppose I've bummed around theatres too long or read my poetry too long.
I hope you do give the poetry challenge a try.
All the best
Do no harm.
As a participant and avid supporter, yes, on a poetry challenge. Chrissy's right. We're gearing up for another challenge too, so do present one, best date probably early to mid December. Certainly no later, given the upcoming holidays. Perhaps suggest a particular rhyming form? Perhaps a sonnet, ballad or villanelle? Posting a published poet's example of whatever you are asking us to create would be very helpful.
Read the guidelines to the challenge to get the rules down on what it is a few of us are attempting to encourage.
Hi belcanto and Chrissy- thanks for the response. Would I be allowed to set a challenge based on my own lament for two voices as in my piece 'Stand up all you soldiers!' ? The theme could be any of the current refugee crises - or something else about which to get angry. Maybe the plight of the homeless, for example, but nothing mawkish or sentimental. Who judges these things, and what benefit would be derived by the winner? Help me out here guys....Unclemac
Sorry Mac, I have no idea what the rules are I just know that the challenge exists. You could do as Belcanto says and check out the guidelines.
I once wrote a rhyming play for children (I don't like the concept of Pantomime old and traditional as it is I'm a bit of a JM Barrie -- is that the right spelling, the chap who wrote Peter Pan -- who would never have that called a pantomime) and that was really hard work; slinging the rhymes between characters and still maintaining the flow of the story and action. But on another occasion when I was a lot younger I did an up-to-date translation of the Scottish play where I had the Scottish king as a Glasgow gang land boss and his lady as a chap and I'd got half way through the 'Come you spirits who tend on mortal thoughts' speech before I realised that I had been rhyming as Bill did throughout. That really surprised me because I didn't do it deliberately. It just happened. Very strange.
It is a very peculiar thing we do when we write. Well it is for me.
Do no harm.
You want to set a challenge to write a rhyming elegy/lament about a public concern (as opposed to a private loss), is that right? I think that's challenge enough for anyone without specifying two voices or that the tone be angry.
There is no 'best' or winner, and no one who determines such. The challenge is meant to inspire us to write and give each other feedback on whatever we come up with in response. In other words, we try to encourage a level of critique, the latter usually offered in a very informal way. We say what we like about a piece, and where something might falter, or not be clear enough. We could make a suggestion or two. A lightweight workshop approach, though we must be careful to note what level of feedback a participant wants. That preference is selected when a piece is submitted.
Select new topic in the poetry challenge forum and write a header: perhaps - Challenge for Monday, December 11: write a rhyming elegy/lament.
In the comments section give suggestions about theme and content if you like: something in world affairs that is troubling to you? Perhaps a political crisis? Syria? Refugees left to drown at sea? Whatever suggestions you can think of. And as I said before, an example of a short rhyming elegy would be helpful - some are pages long!!
Hope you'd enjoy doing this and being a participant. Of course, you'd be expected to post another lament yourself. Could be an older piece you've not published here before. We sometimes cheat and do that kind if thing if we can't come up with something entirely fresh from the oven. 🙂
All challenges up to now have been pretty simple on this particular site. So your idea would be more complex than the usual fare. A challenge indeed, though very interesting.
" In other words, we try to encourage a level of critique, the latter usually offered in a very informal way. We say what we like about a piece, and where something might falter, or not be clear enough."
Sorry to but in but is that why no one seems to comment on the stuff people post on the site?
I used to look forward to commenting on things people had submitted and to having comments on my own stuff, obviously. That used to be a great thing about the site.
Or have I got this wrong? If I have, sorry for the intrusion. I'll get my coat.
Do no harm.
sorry to but in but is that why no one seems to comment on the stuff people post on the site?
I take it you object to critique of any kind, Chrissy? If so, you just select comments only to let readers know that. In fact, on this site very few offer critique at all anyway, and that's why I like the challenge so much - I want to be part of a workshop kind of exercise; I want to improve on my writing and techniques and want to encourage others to the same. We are hardly there, but I keep on hoping!
No, you're not butting in or 'wrong' to express your views. It's okay with me. Maybe I'm the one who misunderstood what Mac was looking for because he asked about a workshop himself - relative to prose I believe, and proper use of grammar, spelling etc...????
"I take it you object to critique of any kind, Chrissy?"
Well you shouldn't take any such thing. Glory be I love comments and critique of any kind. In fact that's the very thing I miss. When I originally joined this site way back in the mists of time ... 2004 actually but the mists of time seemed more dramatic ... I couldn't wait to read and comment and to read the comments others had posted on my work that I'd submitted. I don't object to anything, I don't think I ever objected to anyone critiquing my work. It's what this site is all about. It used to be what this site was all about.
I simply remarked on the lack of comment and critique on the general submission on the site. I think I've only had two or three on my stuff since I started posting again. I put that down to the fact that I was reposting stuff that I'd posted on the old site but seeing your previous comment that I quoted part of it made wonder if the only way I would get any feedback was to contribute to the challenge. That's it. I in no way implied that I didn't want critique, I would just like to get some feedback on subjects I've chosen to write about.
Ah but I'm too weary to debate it. I'm still pulling a thirty-six hour shift trying to teach my wee dog the meaning of the four letter word beginning in w and ending in k and that it is different to the four letter word that begins with p and ends in y.
All the best
Do no harm.
Can I just say sorry to have dropped out of conversation 👀
Enjoyed poetry very much but entering the time of year I have to hibernate in order to cope with short days and lack of light. 🌚
It’s a bugger for sure and even my state of the art light headphones from Finland do not seem to be helping 😳
Hopefully perk up once winter solstice is passed 21 Dec and sun starts to travel back but cannot count on it!
Shamanically speaking...Darkness is a time of germination, growth, retreat. It does not have to be 'dark' although it is! lol 😉
However, the level of fatigue in my instance can be disabling. Even reading can be a trial. So, unless I reply straight away, I can find myself too tired to read and take in what has come before. 🙁
My Dad always said to me "The darkest hour is just before the dawn" I have held fast to that belief for many years.
Best wishes to everyone.
Well you shouldn't take any such thing. Glory be I love comments and critique of any kind. In fact that's the very thing I miss.
Did I misunderstand your remark, Chrissy! Apologies. But am delighted you detailed your meaning and happen to share my own approach to what it is on UKA you find so valuable. Sorry, too, for the long absence and silence. I'm just back from a Thanksgiving Holiday trip and three disasters which socked it to me on my return - one of which was that I couldn't access my computer. Again. Took me a couple of days to resolve that one!
Wish you could find your way to participating in the poetry challenges. Afraid I'm not commenting anywhere else right now. Still holding out on a full return to the site.
For the record, Chrissy, I don't think the lack of comments is entirely the fault of members. The design of how any interaction on work is seen and followed is truly awful on here. Very discouraging and confusing. It is so much easier to be seen and read on the forums and I can't understand why the same doesn't apply to the main site. But it doesn't. Half the time, if a comment doesn't pique my interest I never actually read/go to the piece it's attached to. And that's sad.