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why not

You can hold your breath and time stands still,
You can see colors of death and you always will,
The lines intersect here hear
But their definition isn't clear.
Parallel boxes collapse at a touch.
It's too much to be used as a crutch.
Life lines break in the palms of your hands,
As loud men shout from the bleachers and stands.
Can't you smell the aroma as Death draws near?
She splatters and splashes with the colors of fear.
She twists and swirls and chants aloud
While the panting herd stampedes the crowd.
The terror builds as children scream,
And brave men move as in a dream.
I hold my head - it hurts so much,
That I fear the cold and loving touch
Of a creature that skulks in the shadows of life
While we pray for deliverance from the strife.
But no one answers our plea for mercy above the din,
So i reach for the needle and plunge it in.
Death dances circles around me now.
I breathe slowly, then throw in the towel.

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: 


The focus here is dark. This in not a bad thing, merely a thing. With a dark focus, I find it preferable to build it slowly and let the ending crash against the expectations of the reader. My goal in a dark piece it to slowly increase the tension until the climax. This may not provide resolution, but it does draw the reader through the piece.

Focus wise, the piece could use some tightening. Not necessarily shorter, just more deliberate.

Structure wise, your meter begins to wander, going from a 9 syllable standard early on to 10 and 11 and 12. I would like to see a pattern in the structure. there is nothing wrong with a wandering meter, but it should be deliberate.

Overall, the piece has value and potential. I would love to see you return to it and make it stronger in tone, focus, and structure.

At this point, i won't offer a suggestion on the tone, focus, or structure unless you request it. Ultimately, this is your work, only you can decide what critique and advice is of value.


Jonathan Moore

Hello Jonathan,
I wrote this poem and rewrote it again. It started out as a stream of consciousness rambling of dark scenes. I agree that it should be tightened but I'm not sure how to do that. Any ideas you could give me would be appreciated. .

author comment

I'm taking the first few lines and providing my thoughts on structure. One of the things i am doing is to use a decreasing/increasing meter. This creates a tension to the piece and pulls the reader through until the next stanza.

Another thing I am doing is changing it to first person, to bring it into sharper focus.

I am interested in your thoughts.


I hold my breath and time stands still,
Death colors my windowsill,
Intersecting here
But it is unclear,
Parallels touch,
It's too much,
Stained hands,
ruined lands,
life lines break,
no chance to take
that last shallow breath
in the presence of death,
the crowd cheering in tatters
then turning to other matters.


Take what I have offered and consider what make sense to you, what, if anything, you feel is useful, then rewrite your piece with the added purpose.


Jonathan Moore

I read this twice and really the only things I can offer is this:

I’d like to see put in four line stanzas, but it’s your work. I think it would be a bit more powerful that way. Then the last line of the poem. . It just kept me dangling. Then throw in the towel? I think you did that for the rhyme. It’s just me but I would like to see it finish harder, like;

I breathe slowly, resolve throws down.
Just a thought. Otherwise great piece.

Pegasus was a genius,
living within a suit of difference.
He liked what he was,
nodded in respect and
simply flew . . . away.

By: K. Mulroney

" I am who I am, say what I say, do what I do. With no apology."

Hi K. Mulroney,
I like your idea of four stanzas. I'll try it. As for the last line, you are right again - it was a cop out. I need to work on this. Thank you for your comments.

author comment
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