Four Impressions up at Marie Marshall’s Zen Space

I don’t usually write short poems, I always get carried away. Marie Marshall & Bob Okaji persuaded me to try my hand at something short, so thanks must go to them for the encouragement & extra to Marie for including me at my most unsure. Writing short poems is so difficult. It’s a neat little showcase Marie puts together, worth a bit of your day to have a browse, go here to do so. Also, worth a browse for the Man Ray photos.

12 thoughts on “Four Impressions up at Marie Marshall’s Zen Space

      1. That’s where your strength lies, Daniel, though these four prove you’re not a one-trick pony. You might be surprised at what falling in love can do for your poetry! Consider Neruda.

  1. I was going to say “They’re surprisingly good,” but actually I am not surprised. Your ‘Impressions’ show a delicacy of touch that does not tamper at all with the robustness of the poems. I have learned, through reading your longer poems, that you ‘pass through’ many a salient ‘moment’, where image and experience coincide and leap together; I knew that you could, if you wanted, not so much excise that from a longer work and present it, but seize that saliency and showcase it in its own right, with its own force.

    Yet having said that, you show, by being able to write long poems, a great deal of confidence in your own poetry and poetics. That confidence is there in these short pieces. They are as good as any of the ‘traditional’ haiku, maybe even better than some as they are free from the constraint of form – who can say? People do write haiku both with and without the old 5-7-5 of course, and the balance of discipline and liberty can produce brilliance.

    I have written oodles of love poetry, and it can be done without all the moon joon toon. Try these:
    https://kvennarad.wordpress.com/?s=love and don’t forget to click on ‘older’ too. Love is a phenomenon of life, just as sleeping, dancing to music, sicking up bad prawns are, and therefore it deserves to be skilled after.

    1. Well thank you very much.
      I am a confident poet, I know I can write poetry, whatever feeds me the poems won’t let me stop; it is in someway against my will. I have never sat in front of a white sheet of paper waiting for ideas, forms, meters, words etc to arrive. I am cleaning a toilet & voila “They say the Earth’s a hypochondriac / I place my ear against its chest to ausculate” Just like that, full formed iambic pentameters & hexameters. I know in addition, that is the only thing I do where I feel it to be right. When I create a piece of music I can take it or leave it, it doesn’t hold me, I don’t feel pride or emotion for it. It is something I like to do, but it isn’t essential to my living. But poetry, the writing of a poem has a tremendous effect on me.
      That is why short poems are hard, I know there is always more in the motif of images, more associations to be made. More words to taste & test.
      You are quite right about love, it is a failing of mine to have failed to write about it. It feels too pure a phenomenon to meddle with, to idle into a pretentious verse. I don;t think that generally, only how I know I’d botch it. Best left till it feels right till I can skill after it.

      1. First of all, Daniel, I would like to invite you to be guest editor of the Spring 2019 Showcase at ‘the zen space’. Email me and I’ll tell you what it entails.

        On the subject of pentameter, the sonnet is another shot in my locker. I wonder if while to were visiting ‘me pomes’ you came across the one extended from the 6th Dalia Lama? Not one of my best, but it shows that I used to think in iambs.

        There’s also a love pome there entitled ‘Confessions of an English sushi eater’. I’m looking forward to ‘Confessions of an English kimchi eater.’ Could be good!

      2. I am quite enjoying the truncation of a beat, which creates a spondee & a sort of club-foot step to the line, sort of like a 3/4 or 3/2 beat in music, which creates a sort of 2 steps forward one step back feeling. I don’t know if the reader will feel it, I hope so, but it is what I intend. Maybe I’ll post one, or send you one via email when I am done.

        I didn’t find the 6th Dalai Lama poem, read a number, I’ll seek it out though.
        I remember a lecturer telling me once you get metrical forms, you’ll see them in everything & it’ll drive you nuts; I dunno why she said that, I quite enjoy picking out the meter of quotidian language; it’s mostly crap, but, there are moments.

        I don’t know what I’d have to confess about eating kimchi, I’ll look into it. I know what good kimchi is & what is bad. There might be something Manichean in that.

      3. If I’m told that iambic pentameter isn’t ‘natural’ speech, I ask them to imagine an outraged mother, coming across her son dismantling a motorcycle engine on the dining table:

        “I’ve told you time and time and time again – I will not have that sodding thing in here!”

        It’s a forceful mode. I’ve long assumed it was invented because it enables breaths to be taken, and it is an easy framework for players to memorise their lines.

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