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The Playwrights Forum > The Art & Craft of Writing > Poet's Corner : Critique my Poem > Fragments of Father

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 Posted: Mon Jan 1st, 2018 11:53 pm
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timmy
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Location: Oz, Minnesota USA
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Mana: 
Nothing occurs without a reason—
the smell of wind chill in January

or the journey of a clock into blue
times;

the look you gave me holding your hand
to stop you from falling

or those times I sat with you trying to understand
the words poised on your lips.

They never did come out and all the listening
didn’t do me any good—

after seventy-nine years,
you died anyway.

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 Posted: Thu Jan 11th, 2018 04:24 pm
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John Holland
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timmy,
"Nothing occurs without a reason". MY first thought on reading this was that it's simply not true. Then I have to ask myself, So why does the writer use it?
This act of trying to get inside someone else's mind is central to reading, of course. Not to say one should insist on literal truth; I often read a random page of Hegel for inspiration without knowing what the f... he's talking about. I will say (for me) nothing in the rest of the poem clarifies this first line, though the images continue to haunt me: "the look you gave me...", the words that "never come out".
The last stanza haunts too: its terrible simplicity and finality. It reminded me of another last line and I sat here for half an hour while memory drifted in and out. Then I had it: When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose.
So, timmy, lovely poem. Can you tell me why the first line, please? And what is meant by "a clock into blue times"? I'll also accept your admonishing me: No, that's why the poem haunts you.

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 Posted: Thu Jan 18th, 2018 01:58 am
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timmy
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John Holland:

Thanks for your thoughts here. My only response might be, "Oh, it's true, all right. At least in my world."


Edd:

I was lucky. Thank you. Life is good. Except when it's not.

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