Broken Altar (Rev.#1)
#1
(Revision #1 of what is likely to be many ...)

Broken Altar

A tarnished offering on a broken altar,
tightly bound and guarded by a
tombstone sentry with stony eyes.

The sacred psalm is silenced, stifled,
making way for the dirge and shroud,
garden flowers trampled by the guard.

The vigilante has turned vandal,
used Love’s duty for his shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars.

She offered diamonds in exchange,
but he turned his head away.
She donned a grey robe and was silent.


(I am determined to make it say what I want, so have at it ... better, worse? indecipherable? rubbish? Change someting, change everything? It makes sense to me because I can see the picture in my head. I want to know did it transfer this time?)


------------------------------------------------
(Original)

Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie,
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond.
The Soufflé isn’t the soufflé; the soufflé is the recipe. --Clara 
Reply
#2
everything is salvageable, it all depends on how much you're prepared to lose of the original. for me, the title works.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

would be the salvageable part.
Reply
#3
i should have at least tried to explain why i only chose that part.

while it's a valiant effot the alliteration feels forced and the reversed syntax doesn't help. the meter feels out of whack, see our page on basic meter

and beside that it feels like it's trying to hard; use a more natural voice if you can and see if it works better. i think it is a shipwreck, i have hundreds of the buggers. you can make it work.

about limitations of poetry etc....their is one glaring limitation...  it has to be seen to be poetry. whether it's the good stuff or not lays in the eyeballs of the beholder. this one does sting a bit on the cornea Big Grin  great to see you joining in around the site

(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie,
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond.



(This one is a few years old.  Super embarrassed about the emotions and drama of it all.  I was really mad at the time.  Is it even worth salvaging?  If this was a shipwreck would you save it? How?)
Reply
#4
Hi, Q.

I'm with billy on the penultimate stanza: identifiable imagery. For the most part, it comes across as the way you think (thought) a poem ought to sound, rather than what you want it to say. High-falutin', desperate to be understood, it ends up as a pot-pourri of words.

If you take S2 L2 as an example, how many English-speakers even know what vicissitude means? It probably wouldn't make for an easy first reading. And as for being captive...

I'll probably be doing the same with some of my ancient efforts to see if I've learned anything...   Blush

(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie,
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond.


(This one is a few years old.  Super embarrassed about the emotions and drama of it all.  I was really mad at the time.  Is it even worth salvaging?  If this was a shipwreck would you save it? How?)
feedback award A poet who can't make the language sing doesn't start. Hence the shortage of real poems amongst the global planktonic field of duds. - Clive James.
Reply
#5
(07-25-2015, 03:03 PM)billy Wrote:  i should have at least tried to explain why i only chose that part.

while it's a valiant effot the alliteration feels forced and the reversed syntax doesn't help. the meter feels out of whack, see our page on basic meter

and beside that it feels like it's trying to hard; use a more natural voice if you can and see if it works better. i think it is a shipwreck, i have hundreds of the buggers. you can make it work.

about limitations of poetry etc....their is one glaring limitation...  it has to be seen to be poetry. whether it's the good stuff or not lays in the eyeballs of the beholder. this one does sting a bit on the cornea Big Grin  great to see you joining in around the site

(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie,
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond.



(This one is a few years old.  Super embarrassed about the emotions and drama of it all.  I was really mad at the time.  Is it even worth salvaging?  If this was a shipwreck would you save it? How?)
Thanks for the honesty, Billy! I knew it was bad, and I was trying to just pull the plug on it, but it kept whispering to me that it had the right to a second opinion. Now I can In good conscience let it rest in the dusty mausoleum of "well at least I tried." I thought it might at least be good for practicing restructuring but I guess I need to find one with a solid foundation first.

--Quix

(07-25-2015, 05:14 PM)John Wrote:  Hi, Q.

I'm with billy on the penultimate stanza: identifiable imagery. For the most part, it comes across as the way you think (thought) a poem ought to sound, rather than what you want it to say. High-falutin', desperate to be understood, it ends up as a pot-pourri of words.

If you take S2 L2 as an example, how many English-speakers even know what vicissitude means? It probably wouldn't make for an easy first reading. And as for being captive...

I'll probably be doing the same with some of my ancient efforts to see if I've learned anything...   Blush

(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie,
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond.


(This one is a few years old.  Super embarrassed about the emotions and drama of it all.  I was really mad at the time.  Is it even worth salvaging?  If this was a shipwreck would you save it? How?)
Thanks John!
I love that, "potpourri of words," well said. And now that you said that its all I can see when I read it. Smile thanks for taking the time, I know it's more fun to dissect the good ones, but this really does help me get my balance.
--Quix
The Soufflé isn’t the soufflé; the soufflé is the recipe. --Clara 
Reply
#6
(07-25-2015, 02:33 PM)Allysum Wrote:  
(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie,
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond.



(This one is a few years old.  Super embarrassed about the emotions and drama of it all.  I was really mad at the time.  Is it even worth salvaging?  If this was a shipwreck would you save it? How?)
if you want personal info use the p.m system we have. keep replies solely about the poem at hand./mod

Hi Quixilated,
I'm Allysum. Where are you from; how old are you? I am unfamiliar with the word Quixilated! What does it mean?
I'm wondering if this poem is about an ex-lover...am I right, or wrong?
To me, I've always been taught that poetry has no limitations, no rules, no need for perfection--although, tell an artist that (such as yourself) and one will find that their work always seems to be unfinished LOL
Also, I'd say everyone has their own style, and just because you hate it now, doesn't mean one day/night, you'll enjoy reminiscing over why you wrote in the first place.
--Allysum.Edwards@mymail.nwtc.edu
Hi Alyssum,
Quixilated is a mash up of Quixotic an Pixilated (not to be confused with pixelated). This poem is not about an ex-lover or even about love. It's about one person, in the name of "for your own good" or "love," completely ruining a moment or idea that was treasured by the other person.

I like my poetry to have rules, but that's a peronal preference. No judgment for the artists who freestyle. My entire world is rules oriented, so my poetry must reflect that I suppose. Therefore I must work to learn the rules and struggle to abide by them. I'm very bad at all of it, poetry and following it's rules at the moment, so currently my poetry reflects struggle and chaos. Smile

Welcome to the site!

--Quix
The Soufflé isn’t the soufflé; the soufflé is the recipe. --Clara 
Reply
#7
I agree with others in saying that the overall sound of the poem is well done. The alliteration is nice and it flows well. However the imagery is too abstract, and not concrete enough to convey anything.

You obviously have a vast command of the English language however this tends not to connect to readers, try using more serviceable language.
Reply
#8
(07-27-2015, 05:04 PM)Brenkin Wrote:  I agree with others in saying that the overall sound of the poem is well done. The alliteration is nice and it flows well. However the imagery is too abstract, and not concrete enough to convey anything.

You obviously have a vast command of the English language however this tends not to connect to readers, try using more serviceable language.
Thanks, Brenkin! I am old fashioned and prefer the archaic, but I get how that could alienate readers. Especially when it obscures the actual meaning of the poem. Back to the drawing board! Smile

--Quix
The Soufflé isn’t the soufflé; the soufflé is the recipe. --Clara 
Reply
#9
(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie, If I were to say this to someone, I would say "Tarnished gifts lie on a broken altar". The inversion is unnatural to me. There are several other inversions in here.
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.  This stanza seems wordy to me. All meat, no (or, at least, too few) bones if that makes any sense.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory, What paltry victory?
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond. I like this final stanza. I don't think "heart's" is needed, as blood always comes from the heart. Of course you're trying to emphasize the love aspect with heart (I believe) but I think that's been established with multiple mentions of love earlier on.

Just some of my thoughts. Hopefully you get some use from them. BTW, I have no problem with you using archaic words. I like learning a new word every now and again. The key is to use the words in the natural manner in which they would be used if a modern person were use them in everyday speech.
"A hippopotamus is just a really cool opatamus."
Reply
#10
(07-30-2015, 01:10 PM)Wjames Wrote:  
(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie, If I were to say this to someone, I would say "Tarnished gifts lie on a broken altar". The inversion is unnatural to me. There are several other inversions in here.
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.  This stanza seems wordy to me. All meat, no (or, at least, too few) bones if that makes any sense.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory, What paltry victory?
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond. I like this final stanza. I don't think "heart's" is needed, as blood always comes from the heart. Of course you're trying to emphasize the love aspect with heart (I believe) but I think that's been established with multiple mentions of love earlier on.
Just some of my thoughts. Hopefully you get some use from them.
Thanks Wjames,
I was originally going to just scrap it, but it won't let me. So now I have to roll up my sleeves and actually make an effort. My brain is happy but my lazy bone is complaining. I've already started to play around with a re-write so this is coming at a very helpful time. Thanks for taking the time. Smile
--Quix
The Soufflé isn’t the soufflé; the soufflé is the recipe. --Clara 
Reply
#11
I know you said you like your poetry to have rules, but this feels a bit too structured IMO. Your choice of words, while impressive (I don't have the slightest clue what vicissitude means lol), makes it seem like you're trying to make a perfect poem, when there really is no "perfect" when it comes to poetry--or any art form, for that matter. Loosen up a bit, let it flow naturally, and you might just salvage this thing Smile
Free verse poetry and jazz are like brother and sister.
Reply
#12
(07-30-2015, 01:37 PM)peacejazzspirit Wrote:  I know you said you like your poetry to have rules, but this feels a bit too structured IMO. Your choice of words, while impressive (I don't have the slightest clue what vicissitude means lol), makes it seem like you're trying to make a perfect poem, when there really is no "perfect" when it comes to poetry--or any art form, for that matter. Loosen up a bit, let it flow naturally, and you might just salvage this thing Smile
Hi PJS,
Thanks for reading and welcome to the site! A lot of people had trouble with all the words just stacked together like that. I have been trying to smoothe it out, but it's hard because each word has a specific meaning with deliberate connotations, and I mean exactly that word and not another one. It is supposed to have a formal feel of sorts because it takes place in a sanctuary/tomb, and I wanted the image of a cathedral, the kind with a built in mausoleum, with echoing marble floors and halls. It is suppoed to feel formal and bound because the speaker has lost a freedom and now the beautiful free thing is bound and broken and lifeless because of the cold binding rules of the antagonist. But it is not meant to be confusing, and that is what I'm trying to address in the edit.

Imagine the freedom of childhood, the silly things that bring so much joy. And there is always a moment when someone makes a comment that shows you just how silly your joyful thing really is, and then it is over. You can never again have that silly joyful thing back, not the way it was. This poem is about the moment that thing dies, and the speaker is mourning its loss, knowing it is ruined and out of reach, and resenting the person who killed it for no other reason than convention.

But no one got that from the poem, and the poem itself is not the important thing, capturing that feeling is what I can't stop trying to do, so the vessel will morph as needed. I mainly liked the high language because the setting is basically high church, an almost religious devotion to the joy, and a very pious and ritualistic killing of it. For our silly joys are trampled right and left, because no one understands a grown up who plays child's games. And it must have rigid form, because the pious rule makers had their way, the free-spirited thing is dead, so the world is only rules and formalities. *sigh* it is way too late, I get loose tongued when all my little monkeys are asleep.

I do loosen up, but those poems are all ridiculous. Currently I seem only capable to write of captivity or nonsense. Unfortunately for all of you, this is my only outlet. *evil chuckle* So my real-life silence translates to writing in the extreme. I have lots of poems "in the works" because now the faucet is on and it's stuck and I can't turn it off. But I won't subject you to them until they are strong enough to bear scrutiny. Also one at a time, let's get this one fixed up first. Smile
The Soufflé isn’t the soufflé; the soufflé is the recipe. --Clara 
Reply
#13
all poetry is worthy, the good the bad and the ugly, all can be edited. as long as the vicissitude of such a thing isn't too daunting.
Reply
#14
Just a matter of diction, but I think a "defiled offering" would sound better than a "tarnished offering".
Reply
#15
it reads a shit load better, will give some better feedback tomorrow . great edit.
Reply
#16
Hi, Quix,

Only some minor points to do with tightening, but I'm 'getting it' now, both the imagery and how it's rendered in free verse. I'm enjoying it. It's not easy transplanting what's in your head into the readers'.  Thumbsup

(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  (Revision #1 of what is likely to be many ...)

Broken Altar

A tarnished offering on a broken altar,
tightly bound and guarded by a
tombstone sentry with stony eyes.

The sacred psalm is silenced, stifled, always admire alliteration
making way for the dirge and shroud,
garden flowers trampled by the guard.

The vigilante has turned vandal,
used Love’s duty for his shackles comma?
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars.

She offered diamonds in exchange, perhaps a semi-colon here?
but he turned his head away.
She donned a grey robe (comma or full stop to emphasise the last three words a little?) and was silent.
feedback award A poet who can't make the language sing doesn't start. Hence the shortage of real poems amongst the global planktonic field of duds. - Clive James.
Reply
#17
i'm back, sorry for the delay.

overall it has a much better read quality to it, i don't trip on the read.
the title aims me at a broken relationship/marriage. a suggestion would be to trim a bit of the fat away. see below for examples.
still needs a bit of work but a great salvage from the original.


(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  (Revision #1 of what is likely to be many ...)

Broken Altar

A tarnished offering on a broken altar,
tightly bound and guarded by a would the [a] work better to start the next line?
tombstone sentry with stony eyes.

The sacred psalm is silenced, stifled, good S's here and above much less overpowering than the original
making way for the dirge and shroud,
garden flowers trampled by the guard. is there a better word choice than guard?

The vigilante has turned vandal, again, good alliteration
used Love’s duty for his shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars.

She offered diamonds in exchange,
but he turned his head away.
She donned a grey robe and was silent.


(I am determined to make it say what I want, so have at it ... better, worse?  indecipherable?  rubbish?  Change someting, change everything? It makes sense to me because I can see the picture in my head.  I want to know did it transfer this time?)


------------------------------------------------
(Original)

Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie,
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond.
Reply
#18
Thanks Billy, don't worry, I have nothing but time on my hands. Smile I will look into the other things you said, but the bit about the guard was already a problem. I tried all kinds of things there. I really wanted to find a way to say a funeral procession, but couldn't find one to my liking. Tried pomp, train, line, procession ... so I gave up and left the trampling to the guard. But that's not who really did it. I'll keep tinkering with it and see if something can be done.

--Quix

(08-02-2015, 10:52 AM)billy Wrote:  i'm back, sorry for the delay.

overall it has a much better read quality to it, i don't trip on the read.
the title aims me at a broken relationship/marriage. a suggestion would be to trim a bit of the fat away. see below for examples.
still needs a bit of work but a great salvage from the original.


(07-25-2015, 11:41 AM)Quixilated Wrote:  (Revision #1 of what is likely to be many ...)

Broken Altar

A tarnished offering on a broken altar,
tightly bound and guarded by a would the [a] work better to start the next line?
tombstone sentry with stony eyes.

The sacred psalm is silenced, stifled, good 's here and above much less overpowering than the original
making way for [s]the
dirge and shroud,
garden flowers trampled by the guard. is there a better word choice than guard?

The vigilante has turned vandal, again, good alliteration
used Love’s duty for his shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars.

She offered diamonds in exchange,
but he turned his head away.
She donned a grey robe and was silent.


(I am determined to make it say what I want, so have at it ... better, worse?  indecipherable?  rubbish?  Change someting, change everything? It makes sense to me because I can see the picture in my head.  I want to know did it transfer this time?)


------------------------------------------------
(Original)

Broken Altar

Tarnished gifts on broken altar lie,
like tombstone heralds with staring eyes,
a garden palace, plucked and wilted.

Sanctuary sepulcher buries, stifles
heart-song’s captive vicissitude,
jubilee-hymn to weeping dirge.

Vigilante vandal, proud and noble,
for one moment’s glory-morsel,
your Love's trust have bled.

Was it worth that paltry victory,
to use Love’s duty as your shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars?

Careless, heedless, callus, oblivious,
not to see hot tears and know
heart's blood pulses in each molten diamond.
[/s]
The Soufflé isn’t the soufflé; the soufflé is the recipe. --Clara 
Reply
#19
Quixilated,
This is my first critique in a while in terms of poetry so I might be a bit rusty (apologies in advance). I have to disagree a bit with Billy (dangerous in my first post) but I think the alliteration is not forced and actually enjoyed it in the revised version. I think the alliteration in the original poem is a bit forced and the language as a whole is less accessible than in the revised version. Referring to the revised version at the beginning of your post, the 't' and 's' sounds in the first two stanzas are nice and I think work well to stitch them together. I am not sure about the last stanza of the revised version. The use of the word "offered" brings it back to the alter, but I'm not sure if you mean offer in terms of an offering at an alter or just in terms of giving something in exchange. It would be good to clarify that or perhaps look for a different word if you don't intend the reference back to the alter.

Hope this helps.

Quote:A tarnished offering on a broken altar,
tightly bound and guarded by a
tombstone sentry with stony eyes.

The sacred psalm is silenced, stifled,

making way for the dirge and shroud,
garden flowers trampled by the guard.

The vigilante has turned vandal,
used Love’s duty for his shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars.

She offered diamonds in exchange,
but he turned his head away.
She donned a grey robe and was silent.
Reply
#20
Thanks J'berg!

Everything helps! And I love to hear opposing points of view, it reminds me that I have choices. Smile I'll definitely take your advice into consislderation when redrafting. (It might be a while, I'm sort of letting it sit and whisper).
--Quix

(08-05-2015, 12:22 AM)jytreberg Wrote:  Quixilated,
This is my first critique in a while in terms of poetry so I might be a bit rusty (apologies in advance). I have to disagree a bit with Billy (dangerous in my first post) but I think the alliteration is not forced and actually enjoyed it in the revised version. I think the alliteration in the original poem is a bit forced and the language as a whole is less accessible than in the revised version. Referring to the revised version at the beginning of your post, the 't' and 's' sounds in the first two stanzas are nice and I think work well to stitch them together. I am not sure about the last stanza of the revised version. The use of the word "offered" brings it back to the alter, but I'm not sure if you mean offer in terms of an offering at an alter or just in terms of giving something in exchange. It would be good to clarify that or perhaps look for a different word if you don't intend the reference back to the alter.

Hope this helps.

Quote:A tarnished offering on a broken altar,
tightly bound and guarded by a
tombstone sentry with stony eyes.

The sacred psalm is silenced, stifled,

making way for the dirge and shroud,
garden flowers trampled by the guard.

The vigilante has turned vandal,
used Love’s duty for his shackles
and Faith’s meekness for iron bars.

She offered diamonds in exchange,
but he turned his head away.
She donned a grey robe and was silent.
The Soufflé isn’t the soufflé; the soufflé is the recipe. --Clara 
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!