Join the Neopoet online poetry workshop and community to improve as a writer, meet fellow poets, and showcase your work. Sign up, submit your poetry, and get started.

Rye Whiskey, Rye Whiskey (a sonnet)

Snug in the corner I saw the lad lie,
Fire in his belly and a cork in his eye;
Wordlessly sleeping, a-snooze in his bed,
His words, when awakened, go straight to your head.

Alluring to look at, golden is he,
There when you need him as sure as can be;
Anxious to aid you, he doesn't think twice,
For the cost of his concert your soul is the price.

Then tell him to go now, bid him goodbye;
Allow him to slumber, let sleeping dogs lie!
Tell him his concord you are shooing away,
The lad with the nostrum may no longer stay.

Time he was leaving, show him the door!
A flagon of whiskey a-smash on the floor

Style / type: 
Structured: Western
Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
What did you think of my title?
How was my language use?
What did you think of the rhythm or pattern or pacing?
How does this theme appeal to you?
How was the beginning/ending of the poem?
Is the internal logic consistent?
Editing stage: 


One of the things we must constantly watch for is sacrificing the flow to fit the structure we have chosen. It is tempting to do, and some folks get away with it. i never have, but some folks do.

For me, the stilted grammar and forced structure detract from a worthwhile effort. I would like to see you revisit this piece and smooth it out. Make it flow like a conversation. Make it seem so natural that the rhyme and structure are incidental, instead of the focus.

When working in a structured setting, we can take fewer shortcuts than free verse. For if we do not, the missteps become jarring.

As as example:

Alluring to look at, golden and true,
There when you need him, what more could he do?
Anxious to aid you, he doesn't think twice,
A dram on the tongue to spark and entice.

You do not want your flow to be sacrificed for the rhyme. Take your time, read it aloud, feel the words, hear how they wander through the thought you want to convey.

You, as the poet, must take whatever critique is offered and determine what is of value and what is chaff. But if you ask for feedback, consider it, measure it against your intent, and make a determination what is useful and what is not.


Jonathan Moore

Thank you for the time and effort you have put into your valuable response to my request for critique. First of all I always treat sensible comments on my work (for better or worse) with respect and listen carefully to what is being said. I learned to do this over 50 years ago when I first started playing music for people to (hopefully) listen to. Listening to what people say has taught me much.

I can assure you that I will spend time looking into your advise and will, if required, make adjustments. If I am fortunate enough to receive other critique I can take it on board also and perhaps improve.

Kind regards, Alan

Critique is a compliment
Kind regards, Alan

author comment
(c) No copyright is claimed by Neopoet to original member content.