Epilogue (Edit #1)
#1


I have no attachment to this, so please be as critical as possible.

Reading the obituary is much softer
than swinging the front door open
and seeing a once perfect face
dented, discolored, slashed
by shattered glass, broken
by blunt force trauma.

The obituary is easier than a phone call
from the police -- an alarm
clock I never set -- voices cold as her flesh
because they only see the finale,
not the whole film.

Writing her obituary is like
skipping the last five chapters
of another person's book
and attempting an epilogue
to a story that never ended.



Reading the obituary is much softer
than swinging our front door open
and seeing her once perfect face
dripping blood, nose cracked sideways
and her brown eyes emptied of life.

The obituary is easier than a phone call
from the police
at the darkest hour
of night, voices cold as her flesh
because they've only seen her finale,
not the whole film.

Writing her obituary is like
skipping the last five chapters
of another person's book
and attempting an epilogue
to a story that never ended.

If you're the smartest person in the room, you're in the wrong room.

"Or, if a poet writes a poem, then immediately commits suicide (as any decent poet should)..." -- Erthona
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#2
.
Hi UB.
I find the first two lines very engaging, but then there's a lot of rather prosaic description
- one might argue that blood wouldn't be dripping from a corpse - about someone whose
relationship to N is not sufficiently established, with the result that I don't really care about
either. I'd cut the 'film' references and stick with the writing/reading idea.

By 'reading' do you mean 'delivering'? (I couldn't be sure).

My suggestion is start with:
Reading the obituary is much softer
than swinging our front door open
easier than a phone call from the police

and don't describe her, but concentrate on N's reaction/s.


Best, Knot.


.
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#3
There's a lot I like here.

(06-04-2019, 11:32 AM)UselessBlueprint Wrote:  Reading the obituary is much softer--The opening line has an understated power to it. It does what an opening should do. There's tension. It's magnetic.
than swinging our front door open
and seeing her once perfect face
dripping blood, nose cracked sideways--I understand your need for contrast and while nose cracked sideways is interesting. The dripping blood and her brown eyes emptied of life just state the condition flatly. There's a shock value of sorts but no real push. It's tough because the obituary is the softer figurative access point and the body is starkly the body. I just don't know if the stark retelling works for you. Maybe play with figurative language without being figurative ala Neruda for example: "and the blood of children ran through the streets without fuss, like children's blood." 
I think implying figurative without giving it to the reader might be a possible path.
and her brown eyes emptied of life.

The obituary is easier than a phone call--nice break
from the police
at the darkest hour--while I can get a bit of dark night of the soul, it's coming close to melodrama.
of night, voices cold as her flesh--this is nice. You could maybe even figuratively push it a bit more but it works and I like it.
because they've only seen her finale,
not the whole film.--I like these lines.

Writing her obituary is like--what this line does well and you might want to emphasize it more is the use of her. You may want to consider emphasizing it more by removing the pronoun from the earlier strophes. To give an earlier distance and now an immediacy--just a thought.
skipping the last five chapters
of another person's book
and attempting an epilogue
to a story that never ended.--I think the ending is strong because it isn't an ending and can't be an ending. It is the grief that goes beyond the body. I like what you've done here on the whole.
I hope some of this is helpful.

Best,

Todd
The secret of poetry is cruelty.--Jon Anderson
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#4
hi useless, nope scrub that it doesn't sound good; hi blueprint.
the main part of the poem which is the juxtaposition of the obit and real life memories works really well. they play off each other almost perfectly. a few ideas below.

i like the poem a lot becuse [see my feedback in poem] that said, i think you could flesh it out with a couple more stanza; possibly allude to her death. i'm getting murder but it could have been a cliff dive or car accident. an odd simile or a metaphor or two would help better create the emotion of the story teller.

(06-04-2019, 11:32 AM)UselessBlueprint Wrote:  


I have no attachment to this, so please be as critical as possible.


Reading the obituary is much softer solid original opening line than has already made want to continue.
than swinging our front door open
and seeing her once perfect face
dripping blood, nose cracked sideways
and her brown eyes emptied of life. i like the stark contrast of the rest of this stanza with the opening line. what i would like to see is the how and the why of these images.

The obituary is easier than a phone call
from the police
at the darkest hour this line is probably my only negative comment; it reads as cliche specially in conjunction with [of night]
of night, voices cold as her flesh the later part of this line is a good image. it's has though the voice has to be so cold; to not be would make the voice less understanding.
because they've only seen her finale,
not the whole film.

Writing her obituary is like
skipping the last five chapters
of another person's book
and attempting an epilogue
to a story that never ended. a solid ending that leaves me wanting to read those missing chapters.
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#5
Thanks for all the feedback so far. I've made a few reserved edits, but nothing too drastic yet. I'm trying to work out where an extra stanza could be placed, and what could be included, because as I've made these edits I've realized I'm lacking some details.

S1 changes are influenced by feedback, but not directly taken advice. It's goal is really to describe the scene, not react. Really, I think I've taken away the little figurative language that was there, because figurative language doesn't do well for a crime scene.

S2 removes cliche and borrows slightly from some another writer, but is otherwise unchanged.

S3 unchanged. Should there be a new stanza inserted before or after this? Am I missing something crucial? What more would you guys want to see?
If you're the smartest person in the room, you're in the wrong room.

"Or, if a poet writes a poem, then immediately commits suicide (as any decent poet should)..." -- Erthona
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