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The Starlight Night (by Gerard Manley Hopkins for workshop)

Look at the stars! look, look up at the skies!
O look at all the fire-folk sitting in the air!
The bright boroughs, the circle-citadels there!
Down in dim woods the diamond delves! the elves'-eyes!
The grey lawns cold where gold, where quickgold lies!
Wind-beat whitebeam! airy abeles set on a flare!
Flake-doves sent floating forth at a farmyard scare! --
Ah well! it is all a purchase, all is a prize.

Buy then! bid then! -- What? -- Prayer, patience, alms, vows.
Look, look: a May-mess, like on orchard boughs!
Look! March-bloom, like on mealed-with-yellow sallows!
These are indeed the barn; withindoors house
The shocks. This piece-bright paling shuts the spouse
Christ home, Christ and his mother and all his hallows.

Re-write.

Look at the stars! look, look up at the skies!
O look at all the fire-folk sitting in the air!
The bright boroughs, the circle-citadels there!
Down in dim woods the diamond delves! the elves'-eyes!
The grey lawns cold where gold, where quickgold lies!
Wind-beat whitebeam! white poplar set a flare!
Faint shadows sent floating forth at a farmyard scare!
At what cost? What is the prize?

Buy then! bid then! -- What? -- Prayer, patience, alms, vows.
Look, look: a May-ness, like on orchard boughs!
Look! March-bloom, ground down in mealed fallows!
These are indeed the barn; withindoors house
The shocks. This piece-bright paling shuts the spouse
Home within and out and all its hallows.

Last few words: 
Now this is a poem you really must read aloud.
Editing stage: 
Workshop: 

Comments

Buy then! bid then! -- What? -- Prayer, patience, alms, vows.
Look, look: a May-mess, like on orchard boughs!
Look! March-bloom, like on mealed-with-yellow sallows!

I hope you don't mind me commenting on this piece, because I'm not in the workshop. I found this a surprising read. And I took your advice, to read it aloud the second time. Much energy here. Thanks for posting!

always, Cat

When you fling poo, some of the stink sticks to you!

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Don' you just love the energy of this piece? Obvious over-use of exclamation marks, but are they?

This is one of my all time favourite poems and it is going to break my heart to see it torn to pieces here. But I have to cop what I dish out.

cheers,
Jess
Neopoet is a workshop. Poets take the time to read and think about your work and offer suggestions.
There is no obligation to make any changes however please acknowledge critique and comments.

author comment

What a mess. Rhyme appears to be a-b-b-a-a-b-b-a on first verse. 8 lines. The second verse he seems to have run out of hyperbole and collapses in a heap after a mere 6 lines, rhyming at a-a-b a-a-b.
To be kind, perhaps his eyesight was going and he mixed up verses from two different poems ?
An improvement might be

I looked up at the sky one night,
The flashing stars gave me a fright
I wish I hadn't smoked that shite
I'm quite delusional.
Elves and Goblins chased me home,
Convinced I had philosopher's stone:
A rhyme for "delusional"

TIME FLIES LIKE AN ARROW, BUT FRUIT FLIES LIKE A BANANA

Your "improvement" made me laugh out loud. The last line is genius, but to the poem.
I think this poem is right down my alley, what with Elves and white poplar and all, but the fact I'm not quite sure I believe says something about the confusion inherent here. Though not as strongly as Tam, I agree with him.
Of course like my Keats, this has references that are confusing due to the passage of time from the 19th century (I mean, what the hell is a "flake dove"?).
The rhyme scheme is fine by me (I think we would term this "random"?). I don't notice any glaring discrepancy's in the meter, but god help me he's capitalized each line like the Poe and McCrea. What is the point of this could someone tell me?
So, I agree Jess that the poem has a great deal of energy to it and I'm confident I'll like it once I've figured it out.

W. H. Snow

A poet is a nightingale, who sits in darkness and sings to cheer its own solitude with sweet sounds. Percy Bysshe Shelley

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There are some obscure words but I don't care in this, he attempted to use words of Anglo-Saxon derivation.

cheers,
Jess
Neopoet is a workshop. Poets take the time to read and think about your work and offer suggestions.
There is no obligation to make any changes however please acknowledge critique and comments.

author comment

While he used pagan and eldritch imagery, he finished with
Christ home, Christ and his mother and all his hallows.
which has always shat me to tears. Was he pandering to the strict religious precepts of his times?
perhaps-
Now home, the hearth and family safe and follows

The obscure words don't bother me at all, this is a joyous mucical celebration of musical language expressed in largley anglo-saxon imagery.

the skinhead version
Fuckin poofters and fairies,
let's go to a Sham 69 gig.

cheers,
Jess
Neopoet is a workshop. Poets take the time to read and think about your work and offer suggestions.
There is no obligation to make any changes however please acknowledge critique and comments.

author comment

"look at the stars, how they shine for you, and everything that you do, it was all yellow..." COLDPLAY! Sorry, first association that came to mind.
Weirdelf! Great choice, albeit a little too flowery for my liking! I like G.M Hopkins and appreciate his brilliant use of figures of speech, esp. assonance and alliteration! To comment on your words: "There are some obscure words but I don't care in this, he attempted to use words of Anglo-Saxon derivation". It was said, Hopkins held 'Old English" in such high regard that in an 1882 letter to Robert Bridges, Hopkins opines that Old English is a "vastly superior thing to what we have now" (cf. Wikepedia)
Yes, agreed, loved the energy and the urgency of "Buy then! bid then!" but with WHAT CURRENCY? -- "What? -- Prayer, patience, alms, vows." to me this is reminiscent of Milton's supplication in ON HIS BLINDNESS -'Thousands at his bidding speed, and post o'er land and sea"
and then there's this:
"This piece-bright paling shuts the spouse
Christ home, Christ and his mother and all his hallows."
Oh Lordie' as the Southerners would say! W.T.F.?
Yes, we know he was a Jesuit priest with all it's religious overtones, but pray tell (to coin a phrase!) what could this mean Jess?
THanks!
Bonitaj

Bonitaj

I suspect as a Jesuit he had to put something about Jesus in there, but the poem is mostly pagan.

cheers,
Jess
Neopoet is a workshop. Poets take the time to read and think about your work and offer suggestions.
There is no obligation to make any changes however please acknowledge critique and comments.

author comment

...aldeddung englisc sy ic i gelice ieldra. wesley

W. H. Snow

A poet is a nightingale, who sits in darkness and sings to cheer its own solitude with sweet sounds. Percy Bysshe Shelley

Learn how, teach others.
The NeoPoet Mentor Program
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i enjoy the energy this poem had. It has a lot of exclamations point. I felt they were necessary to make The poem readably flow as it did. I didn't get bogged down in any of the punctuations. I did find the double dashes disturbing. But the rest of the punct pulled me back into the poem when dashes joining words distracts me and the words I think the poet forgot to put a dash became a distraction for me with this word "withindoors"
I read out loud and it was a great read. One thing I took issue with is the last two lines.

The shocks. This piece-bright paling shuts the spouse.
The period here dislodged my joy with this piece making the flow awkward

Christ home, Christ and his mother and all his hallows.
The poet awkwardly place religion in for some unnecessary reason. My connect with the poem was lost at this point.
I see why you love this poem so much it is a beautiful write and I enjoy reading it with exception the of the last two line.

*Collaborative Poetry Workshop* American Version of Japanese Poetry ~ Renga ~ Haiku, Senyru, Tanka.

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These are indeed the barn; withindoors house

What does it mean? i wih he didn't use such flowery language. The verbage is dated, and obscure. I would think a poet would want their work to be timeless since their creations are a reflection of their soul. This certanly is not timeless. How can you write something like this, using words like abeles and may-mess, and expect people to understand in 100 years.

Now that I am done being unreasonably brutal, ;) I love this poem! It is beautiful, with wonderful imagery.

These are indeed the barn; withindoors house

What does it mean? i wih he didn't use such flowery language. The verbage is dated, and obscure. I would think a poet would want their work to be timeless since their creations are a reflection of their soul. This certanly is not timeless. How can you write something like this, using words like abeles and may-mess, and expect people to understand in 100 years.

Now that I am done being unreasonably brutal, ;) I love this poem! It is beautiful, with wonderful imagery.

But I believe it is impossible for a poet to determine at the time of the writing what will remain common in the language and what will be replaced. The word "vulgar" is latin describing the Roman language used by the common people and it is still a word that is used daily in all English speaking lands. That's over 2,000 years. Who can possibly guess?
wesley

W. H. Snow

A poet is a nightingale, who sits in darkness and sings to cheer its own solitude with sweet sounds. Percy Bysshe Shelley

Learn how, teach others.
The NeoPoet Mentor Program
http://www.neopoet.com/mentor/about

I had a go.

cheers,
Jess
Neopoet is a workshop. Poets take the time to read and think about your work and offer suggestions.
There is no obligation to make any changes however please acknowledge critique and comments.

author comment

that this is a little prayer of thanks for all that he has acquired during his life and making reference to the ways he has done it: Prayers, patience, alms and vows. And, I do believe that during his day, doves were very populous and might have even been grouped with pigeons, also very populous. When the barns and out-buildings were disturbed, the birds would take to flight in clouds of wings dislodging loose feathers. [Those little fluffy under feathers]. Hence the "flake-doves"? I'm also thinking that as Jess has said, Hopkins did make an obeisance to the mores and religious attitudes of the day. Too bad that poets and artists were so intimidated by society. ~ Gee

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... not all pigeons are doves. wesley

W. H. Snow

A poet is a nightingale, who sits in darkness and sings to cheer its own solitude with sweet sounds. Percy Bysshe Shelley

Learn how, teach others.
The NeoPoet Mentor Program
http://www.neopoet.com/mentor/about

Not fond of the end with religious allusions,
but we aren't meant to understand all in poetry;
I think that is the subtle meaning from it all,
the sparks of recognition produced by words,
especially ones juxtaposed in a poem
seemingly odd in context,
they awaken another awareness from the usual
and leave us with their sound reverberating through time.

Please excuse the intrusion Love to all Ann

"The image of yourself which you see in a mirror Is dead,
but the reflection of the moon on water, lives." Kenzan.

something can be hallowed- revered, respected, special, without being religious.

cheers,
Jess
Neopoet is a workshop. Poets take the time to read and think about your work and offer suggestions.
There is no obligation to make any changes however please acknowledge critique and comments.

author comment

I like the rewrite better
It read beautifully out loud. I agree changing the ending made it read better

*Collaborative Poetry Workshop* American Version of Japanese Poetry ~ Renga ~ Haiku, Senyru, Tanka.

Neopoet Community

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