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To Ken, a good man

A good man,
a kindly man,
a good neighbour.

He's been a drover and a banker,
imagine that!
The stories he can tell,
of aborigines singing the cattle to sleep at night,
of his bush mates
singing and telling their ballads by firelight.

I showed him my poem
"Time goes round in a straight line"

"When you check the time
(notice check also means stop)
with a watch or clock with hands that go round,
now like seconds,
in the now like minutes
or resonating in the now like hours,
like the Earth around itself,
around the sun,
in the near infinite now of the spiralling Galaxy
We are in and out of time and myth,

When you read a digital representation
of this thing we call time,
the number gets bigger each time you look.
Digital time drags us inexorably to our deaths.

I like a sunrise,
a morning birdsong,
a shrinking shadow,
the timelessness of a story

I am forever unwrapping the eternal present."

He said
"but it's not a poem!"
But he is a good man,
a kindly man
and was immediately embarrassed,
not wanting to hurt me

So I read it aloud to him.

He understood then, I think.

I hope
I would rather his judgement than a Professor of poetry.

Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Editing stage: 


I found this very touching Elf,

Is it an ode or a rememberance? Or was he just a source of inspiration? I don't suppose you would share his name? I got the feeling of freindship and caring. An appreaciation for wisdom and reverance for values..
Neighbor is spelled wrong, but that is never the issue when reading your work. It would matter if it mattered to you. I never am a fan of the (-) brackets in a work, seems intrusive to me and interupts the flow of art. Like a random symbol in a mathmatical equasion that is unnessary and distracting. But it seems you have used it to interject a thought and made it work for you. Nice inspiration. Thanks for sharing I enjoyed the read.



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but kind of had to because I was quoting my own poem.

This is a true story, Ken is the neighbour (I think the spelling is correct for English spelling) of my friend Jan, whose cats I mind. He is a lovely man and was truly embarrassed when he said "it is not a poem". Then when I read it aloud to him he really got it.

Like most people he thinks poetry has to rhyme and have a ballad style meter, but when he heard the language he was moved. As was I. This was an important moment of sharing for me.

A new workshop on the most important element of poetry-
'Rhythm and Meter in Poetry'

author comment

But isn't Australian poetry mainly rhyme & meter?... A friend, Manfred Vijars is head of *Australian Bush Poetry*

Kudos for your poem, Jess, a triumph!


'ware preconceptions.

And thanks.

A new workshop on the most important element of poetry-
'Rhythm and Meter in Poetry'

author comment

That's an incorrect extrapolation from my comment, Jess. Rhyme & meter may or may not have anything to do with American Country-Western *themes*. However, we do make judgments based on experiences, n'est-ce-pas? Many poets I've met from England & Australia have strong roots to rhyme and meter. Just as many *beginner* poets rhyme and have issues with meter.

I am totally aware of the fact that my work is without rhyme and more often than not, meter. I do however, admire poetry that speaks to me regardless of its form.

Imo, this is one of your very best poems, Jess. It comes from a quiet, balanced loving place and drawn from the living well of a real experience, imo.


Yet you know many Aussie poets here, and, with no lack of humility, I have helped many of them grow from rhyming balladeering.

The Stereotypes come from Banjo Patterson and Henry Lawson, but the greatest Aussie poets, like you, are not constricted by rhyme or meter.

Although I've got to say, a little meter would make your work more accessible.

And thank you for your kind review. As I say so often, even if the work is fantasy, write what you know.

A new workshop on the most important element of poetry-
'Rhythm and Meter in Poetry'

author comment

"write what you do know." Yes. It is the feeling-place from which we write regardless of experience,
even if it is mental thought-forms in its origins.

I am pleased in the way you have relaxed into your own balance.

Much love,

it's amazing how you take something so simple and write something so beautiful around it. this particular piece has no complexities attached to it, and I think that's what's so attractive about it in the first place.

psst, on a side note, it reminds me of the beetles' well respected man.


This one seems to be larger than the sum of its parts.

A new workshop on the most important element of poetry-
'Rhythm and Meter in Poetry'

author comment
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