She welcomed me in a place so distraught,
yet her welcome refurbished the hut so luxurious.
Such bounties are for those who earn them;
a lucky fool I am to be close to her embrace,
for she was the basil for my ailing;
the wings for my flight;
the breath for my life.
But it was such;
she was blessed a good heart for little wealth,
an enchanting presence for a humble abode,
an inquisitive mind for little education;
she was balanced yet the scales tipped
such that life was a fraught belonging.
But dismayed not, a blissful existence;
her smile like the sparkling stars
that leave you in wonder why the Almighty
created something so beautiful yet out of grasp.
But today I mean to grasp those lights
right out of the sky and clasp to my heart.
She was lonely, but then again so are the stars.
Thus I wish to pull her down to escape that prison.
She is an ocean, exposed yet hidden;
calm yet thrashing;
a blue veil, veiling all the colors contained.
Her moods make one want to search,
to know the depths within these waters
so that if the time comes,
when the sea is in rage and turmoil,
one knows the charm that calms the waves;
controls them and the life within,
so that no harm comes to new life
or to the sea, for it shall remain a necessity
for your sustenance of the soul.
Her words too registering soothing and calm,
the rustling wind through the trees
before autumn; as if a thousand whispers
whispering thoughts that, though you don't get,
you wish to keep listening till your last breath.
Then the leaves fall off so gracefully
with maybe a slight twirl;
tracing a path with delicacy,
adding to those already fallen.
And then when the wind blows
the whispers rise and fall with a melody
a sad yet sweet melody,
narrating tales of princes meeting their maidens.
She is humble; in covering and within,
her humility like the clouds,
obscuring from the naked eye
the bright beams of the sun
so that no harm does come to the eyes
and so that one does not truly see
the nature and magnificence
that the Almighty created the sun with.
Thus magnificent, like the sun she is,
covering herself in numerous shrouds.
Her intentions pure and flawless;
flawless for me; one made of flaws.
Such that if the grail she hands to me
is of a poisonous concoction
but aware I am not and neither is she.
I shall still sip from that grail and laugh,
and be it death upon my doorstep,
I shall not complain to the angel
for I know with poison my fate was entangled
yet her intentions were still pure and flawless.
But a being such as her is a bounty;
does a man like myself deserve it?
Would I have brought justice to this creation or
would I have repeated the mistakes of man?
Though selfish I was and generous she is
I pray; but not that she accepts
the invitation that I am unable to now give
but for mankind to be able to bring justice upon her.
For my spectral existence in her hut
means a lot to both me and her.
For I reminded her on my deathbed
I shall remain by her side;
the basil had given me life
which allowed my ghostly existence to reside in her hut.
Thus she welcomes me everyday
in a place so distraught yet welcoming,
with an empty, broken cup on the small table.
She sits opposite to me with a smile
hoping I shall hold her once again and smile.
Knowing it shall not happen yet hoping.
A fool like me, given her embrace,
I truly am a lucky fool.
But a fool that still hopes that this maiden
is given love and justice I was unable to give.
The different attributes that I have explained in this work are such that they hold quite some importance for me in a way. The humility one and the intentions one. When I am invited to a friends or relatives place and the food is served, I never criticize the food since I feel that the good intentions behind them are enough for me to eat it. True, it might have poison but what would life be if you were to mistrust everyone?
Oh and I like humble people. I like men and women alike who are a bit concious over their composure and attire. Being humble does not degrade a person... at least for me it gives them respect.
I hope that you enjoy this work, it is one of my better ones. Those who are kind enough to critique:
Did you enjoy this work?
Did the analogies look good or did they seem exaggerated?
What did the end explain to you?
Edit: In essence I made a slight tweak and change of font.
Yes I did.
Did the analogies look good or did they seem exaggerated?
They looked good - they were natural, they were humble, they were very specific. They didn't seem out of place.
What did the end explain to you?
That writing the ending's explanation would spoil the fun of reading this work. Need I say more?
It was very well written - the use of the subtitles and the description provided by the author of the maiden whom won his heart (suffice to say the ending was called for as well) must have been a noble representation of her kind.
I thought the analogies were well done. I liked how you started with her welcome and ended with her welcome --a full circle. Well executed. I also loved how you started from the outside and worked your way in. You started with her physical appearance, her beauty. Then you slowly got down to the very core of her being.
From what I gathered, the protagonist died at the end. It seems as though the drink she served him killed him. Although somewhere I feel as though that cannot be the case because of her kindness. But nevertheless, that's what I inferred from it.
Generally, this is a good piece. Yet I must touch on your tense and tone of voice. You began in past tense, then somewhere along the middle, you switched to present. Actually, I believe the switch happened at "Her Smile". I'm not sure if you intended it, and if you did, I could certainly see your reasons. However, I advise you to change the beginning. Right now, the tone is very passive --uninteresting to the average reader. But this piece has so much potential and it'd just be such a shame for a reader to glance away simply because of a passive tone. And it could fixed so easily too! Merely switch to present tense.
I've also noticed that there aren't many rhymes in this piece. I do detect a rhythm though!
In terms of what I thought this piece is about (themes and whatnot), I felt like it's about deception. Her smile is beautiful, she's so kind, the protagonist is madly in love with her and trusts her completely but she winds up killing him. Again, I could be wrong since the ending confused me quite a lot. Maybe he didn't die, or maybe he's just one in a long line of willing victims.
If all I've said just flew over your head, I just have to say this is a great concept, I enjoyed it, but please reconsider your tone.
For some reason at the beginning, I was expecting her to cast him away because the piece began to remind me of John Keat's ballad "La Belle Dame Sans Merci" www.bartleby.com/126/55.html which is about a knight who falls in love with but is finally abandoned by the woman he exalts.
As for answering the questions:
1. Did you enjoy the work? Not really. The idea was a bit clichéd for me; it very much resembles 12th-14th Century English Courtly Love poetry which has been overused and excessively parodied. While there are universal themes about the human condition that will be relevant for ages to come, I feel this fervid, platonic admiration of a silent, idolised woman is somewhat antiquated. I'm not sure if there is a specific target audience but I will mention this as a caution to you anyway: At best, a woman reading this may feel overwhelmed by the expectations of divinity for her sex; at worse, she will feel extremely insulted by the paralleling of her sex to "bounty", "basil"and Romantic objects which ignore her essentially human substance. I doubt your persona has hugely misogynistic sentiments and this does sound harsh but please be careful. Your persona may come across as being a typical figure of arrogant patriarchy as opposed to the modest lover(boy) I feel you are trying to convey. This work certainly has elegance though, evident in the richness of images and firm structure of the work.
2. I suppose this is somewhat answered in my first answer: yes, this is a bit exaggerated for me though considering that you seem to have adopted the Courtly Love mode, this is very natural. For some reason, I really like the line that goes "She was lonely but then again so are the stars", probably because it expresses Romantic sentiment which is missed in our cynical Postmodern world. It has a simplicity about it that is… Nice… ^_*
3. Well, the ending.... Yes, it is ambiguous. The broken cup tells me he could have died. If that is the case, his death is quite sudden. Did she trick him? Are they both even real? 0_0 Mind bender.
I am blown over by your beautiful imagery and am quite fond of the circular structure. While the ending is open, I personally am not TOO bothered by it. Judging from this poem and the last one I read from you, you seem to have an inclination towards Romantic poetry. I have to say that's not really my area but if you are, it's a good idea to read a lot of literature written during the Romantic Era. Off the top of my head, major poets would include John Keats, Lord Byron, William Wordsworth and Elizabeth Barret Browning while major novelists would be the Bronte sisters, Jane Eyre, Victor Hugo and Jane Austen. Austen is an interesting figure: while she writes during and in the style of the Romantic Era, she upholds preceding values from the Age of Enlightenment. For that reason she’s not an author I particularly like but definitely has some interesting, humorous characters and good comments about relationships. That’s just me though.
Hope this was helpful
I really enjoyed reading your piece
I totally respect your opinion. I won't deny it being cliche since I haven't (and probably won't) be reading the traditional romantics. And I don't know much about Courtly poetry. About it being so at worst - I can live with a woman thinking that way because allegories are meant to avoid non-human substance. "Beautiful as a rose" can be insulting in the same way. Plus, If it is a worst case, I can live with it. Also, it was not her 'sex' that was related to a bounty, it was 'the welcome' and the bounty can either mean a pirates loot, or God's gratitude. Now, that is something I explained to you, if you considered it to be otherwise, other people can do as well. Thus, I cannot deny your opinion - since an opinion is a perspective. And where do I sound arrogant? Can you quote a few lines? I am not challenging you, simply asking to know so I can think from a broader perspective Having said that, thank you for your input on this
Thank you for quoting the authors I don't want to be influenced by writers who wrote amazing works - which is easy to happen to me. Already I am being accused of being influenced by Poe... mind you, I like that and take that as a compliment. But I wonder if I will be reading them much
Thank you again, it did help broaden my perspective. However you start with did not really enjoy the work and end with I really enjoyed reading your piece - unless you say that by 'your piece' you are referring to some other work, it is like an oxymoron. Only saying, that if you do not like a work - don't force yourself you to say you did
Thank you again for the time you took for reading and writing this comment
When I said ' her sex', what I meant was 'female kind'... Sorry, was I sounding rather dubious there? 0_0
In terms of arrogance, I was talking about the undertones. This is definitely just an opinion because, I will admit, this sounds a far-fetched: The expression of a woman as a Romantic object distanced and only known as a divinely beautiful figure may seem like typical male idealisation of females as opposed to acceptance of who they are-- equal humans to their fellow men (and I am sure someone reading this comment would like to disagree with me on that but I feel here is not the place to be holding Feminist debates, though I think I have inadvertently raised one). An interpretation like that certainly does take some wild brain but I think it is worth considering: how does the portrayal of females in literature reflect the attitudes regarding gender roles in their society?
From your questioning, I am quite sure you were not trying to be arrogant and personally, I think to accuse you of that is rather far-fetched. I am merely pointing out that as all works of literature are exposed to the innate ambiguity of language based on readers' interpretations influenced by socio-political connections and personal experiences, there are a multiplicity of ways in which to read your work, some of which may not be desirable:
One person may read this and think “oh, he is truly in awe of and respectful towards this woman, what is the crazy-dude InkedLance talking about, blabbering about perceptions of women and what not?”
But someone else may read this and think “oh my gosh! So the writer just thinks woman are these pretty little objects to be turned into angels?! Excuse me but women are people, not Romantic bits of art!” Being truthful, I would be a fence sitter on this matter but that’s not important right now. The fact is that your work has many connotations which may or may not have been considered.
About other authors, what’s wrong with being influenced by great writers? If you are influenced by enough of them, you’ll become a true original— Like Haruki Murakami (he’s my idol, by the way ^_*).
Did I really contradict myself with regards to the enjoyment of your work? That’s a little embarrassing. Okay, I didn’t really like the concept, the idea of this lovely lady being observed through all these lenses. It seems many people found it interesting and there is some charm about it ( I did say I thought the structure was nice) but I guess it just didn’t sit with me. You know, all the woman-business I’ve been raving on about… Though considering it with reference to other similar works of literature (namely those of the Courtly Love and Romantic movement) has made it a very interesting piece. The length of these comments just shows how interesting I find all this.
Your work has much worth, enough to stir my lazy brain. Yes, indeed my brain is quite lazy: I find over thinking and symbolism overrated though I like to think about over thinking which becomes over thinking (about over thinking) itself. I’m in knots now… Don’t worry, I’ll untie myself with some Houdini magic… Okay, just move on to the next paragraph.
Ah, thank you for accepting my words with grace, particularly that not all were positive. I know it is naturally hard to take critique but being able to as you have improve you as a writer which I can certainly see in you.
The perspective stands. Either you say a woman is a woman or you use analogies.
Also The question is what are women? Should a man say about a woman "You are a woman. I love you." And be satisfied by the expressions he used? What you are misjudging here is the intentions of man. The woman here is not displayed in a gallery on whom the man is commenting. She is one who makes him feel special, who he would sacrifice himself for. Disregarding that love is a woman's negative trait (if she does feel it overrated - not meaning you) - plus, while we might want to continue this part of the debate in notes, man and woman are not equals. At least in my opinion. A Knight and a Rook are not equals - despite their talent and usefulness.
Also, I do accept that people have their perspectives but as I said - if it were the woman in the poem, who were to think that way, then it would be rather insulting and arrogant on her part - meaning, the poem was not meant to objectify a woman - it was meant to express the relationship between two individuals.
"But someone else may read this and think “oh my gosh! So the writer just thinks woman are these pretty little objects to be turned into angels?! Excuse me but women are people, not Romantic bits of art!” Being truthful, I would be a fence sitter on this matter but that’s not important right now. The fact is that your work has many connotations which may or may not have been considered."
If someone says this then I would say they have a boring life to not appreciate the beauty of analogy. After all women are not being generalized as bits of art as that comment would state.
I personally dislike the thought of being influenced by artists and then be unique - for me it i like I am a unique mixture of portions of great people. Yet, I am me (with a slight tinge of Poe/Rumi as people say) and I would want to be I don't deny/reject your notion of originality but I just don't like it
The only thing that bothers me about your perspective is this - to believe this is an exaggeration or overrated. While in my case... you are correct, it may be the case that a man believes and sees these things in a woman. Then it is as natural as possible.
Finally, I really appreciate the fact you took out time enough to comment on my work it is rare that a person gives time enough to comment properly and so I hope to see similarly thoughtful comments on my works
I love the essence of this. All the things you find most beautiful, it was amazing to read I lived how it all flowed, but was also each was its own segment.
At the end, were you hinting that you couldn't love her, even as she was willing to love you? The way it was worded, that seemed to be what you were alluding to.
No matter what, I loved this! Amazing job!
Well, in the end... I guess it has been discussed in comments below, the man (author) died. This is him speaking as a spirit, sad to not be by her side. I guess that was sort of vague
Thank you again!
1) Yes, I did quite enjoy this work! It is very well written; and I like your idea of describing a maiden in all of those different aspects.
2) I liked the analogies, especially how you started with Her Welcome and ended with Her Welcome, kind of framing the content in between. I also don't think the analogies were exaggerated, but very fitting.
3) Well, first of all, after I read the ending, the title of that last stanza and its contet kind of seemed to stand in contrast with the last stanza's title. I gathered that the protagonist died, but is still present at the maiden's side. He seems to have died of a poisoned drink the maiden gave him, although I'm not quite sure because the protagonist seems to be speaking hypothetically in the stanza where this is implied (Her intentions).
4) The image that is created in my head while reading this maight sound a bit crazy, but I think of a beautiful woman sitting at a table, a spirit which takes on the form of a man sitting across from her, each regarding the other. The woman seems to be standing above everthing, and the ghost - the protagonist - remembers and reminisces, and even kind of tells the tale of how this situation came to be.
But I think this piece could be understood in a whole other way, too. Like the protagonist is so blinded by this woman, and sees her only as an incredibly beautiful and kind person, that he lets himself be decieved and either doesn't want to believe she's killing him, lets himself be killed either way because he loves her so much or really doesn't know she's killing him. Either way, he apparently loves the maiden so much that he will stay by her side even beyond his death.
I am glad that you enjoyed the work! And yes, the person is still there as a ghost and I like your image a lot The other interpretation... well I don't intend it since I don't like it but well... up to the reader
Thank you again!
I like the first interpretation better too, because that's what came to my mind while reading, and the other was only after thinking about what you wrote, if that makes sense^^
hmmm... while reading and while thinking about what I wrote... that does make sense although in a vague way But no worries!
I noticed something right now, cncerning the title. Somehow "The many attributes of Hers" sounds a bit strange, like something doesn't quite fit. Maybe "Her many atrributes" would be better? Well it's just a thought
"for she was the basil for my ailing;
the wings for my flight;
the breath for my life."
I also really enjoyed the entirety of "Her Intentions." It painted such a devoted picture. Quite lovely.
One suggestion: this line "a blue veil, veiling all the colors contained" uses the word veil or veiled twice in a row. It's one of my pet peeves to have the same descriptive word too frequently in a sentence or even a stanza. Perhaps the word "concealing" would work to describe this effect and give your word selection more variety.
Over all a lovely piece. Nice work.
The portion "Her intentions" is based on my belief of bringing intentions before actions. If you are a guest at some place and you are served food which you KNOW required effort, then there is no need to comment on every detail... for the intentions were good.
I will look into that at times I intentionally add a word more than once to give a repetitive touch and I wonder if that is what I did over here as well since I am myself confused but I will look into it and thank you for the wonderful comment
My favorite would have to be "Her Smile" and "Her intentions", I'm not sure why but I feel like those two parts portray her innocence and purity most, while reading this it felt like someone describing an angel
I love the way it's so descriptive, and so sweet, the way you relate it to nature like waves and wind just makes it even more meaningful and deep.
Keep it up
I am glad that you found the analogies good ^^ and as you might have realized (little chances though) but I have also mentioned... that the work, faith in your grail is based off "Her Intentions"
I will try!
I am glad that you enjoyed it ^^