|Hi Ben Langhinrichs ,
I am reviewing your entry for "INSPIRATIONS " [E].
WOW! This is an incredibly moving poem. It is both mentally and emotionally satisfying. I didn't know how much I loved this structure until you used it here. Normally poems with such a repetition seem too wordy or awkward to me, but you have employed the use of refrains to perfection here for me. They were chilling and poignant, emphasizing what you were saying in exactly the right ways. The whole narrative is incredible, the phrasing and the rhyme flow naturally and poignantly. The poem builds and builds to a great closing stanza. This poem touched me with tears. Did I say that already? Most of the lines are my favorites, but some standouts for me are "The noise grows distant in my ear." The meaning of that is clear, but you aren't leading me by the hand with it. Additionally, it feels like I as the reader know what it means before the subject does. Moreover, I feel you have captured some emotion of the subject in this situation... like, when he said "To see once more your loving smile." Being apart from the experience, we know that if she were there she would not be smiling... but the subject could quite possibly still be thinking that way.
I appreciated your entry in the forum about this poem. It is nice to know that you spend so much time on each poem. (Especially this past month when you did it 13 times! )
If I were to offer any suggestion it would be that your meter feels perfect to me with one exception "cacaphony of cries" - perhaps "a jumbling of cries" or something like that.
Anyway, BRAVO, Ben! Thank you for submitting this poem to the contest. We hope to see more from you.