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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/graywriter
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136 Public Reviews Given
Public Reviews
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1
1
Review by Graywriter
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Hi, Brom
Cute story! This isn't a real review, just a quick note so you can do some edits before deadline.
Since chimpanzees don't have tails, you might want to make your MC a monkey of some type. Also, three yards (9 feet) is an incredibly long tail! I'm willing to suspend belief for the sake of a story, but only up to a point!
Check peaked vs peeked (vs piqued, while you're at it, as writers often confuse those)-- peak/peek/pique
Best of luck.
2
2
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (3.5)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*


Since non-fiction is my forte, I'm especially pleased to find this for review.

The item appears to have been transposed from another publication, judging from the cutline for a missing photo.

Quotations from sources are correctly handled. The various subheadings help organize the material and his football career is organized by time, making it easy to follow. However, some of the material seems redundant, and bits seem out of place. For example, "After a stint with Nacional da liha da Madeira, he signed with Sporting Portugal in 2001" really belongs under Soccer Career.

I do question the ending. The dismissed allegation is hardly a fitting conclusion to an article about a brilliant soccer career. It wants a concluding paragraph for completion.
3
3
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (1.0)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*
#15

A one-star rating means "needs work".

Right away I'm confused by the title. What is Alagasia? It might be an exotic location, or it might be a medication for pain relief. As a title, it doesn't really draw me in. It certainly bears no relation to the story.

Who or what is Galbatorix? If you expect your readers to follow, such things need an explanation.

The first paragraph, while interesting, does not serve the basic purpose of revealing just who is narrating. In a first person POV, it helps to know whose POV you're seeing.

This is not a story. A story has a plot -- the characters have goals that are important to them; there are obstacles to their achieving their goals; there are stakes, bad results if they fail to reach their goals; there is rising action to a climax, which is a resolution when through their own actions the characters achieve their goals; there is a brief denouement, a conclusion to tie up loose ends.

The whole thing deserves to be developed further. You've just named some minor characters and told us little about them. Who are they (beyond dragon and rider)? What are their goals? What prevents them from achieving the goals? What is at stake if they fail?

I sense the basics of some good writing here, some sound technical skills, and some good ideas percolating in the back of your mind. Please don't be in a hurry. Take the time to really work through and develop your ideas.


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4
4
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (1.5)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*
#15

A Cosmic named Gulp? Meh. So-named because he swallows his food whole? And just what might a Cosmic be?

This is background, not even an outline for the main story. Gulp and Yani are dragons, powerful but mortal, who ruled a Utopian universe. Some guys called Slayers came and somehow killed everything in the frickin' universe except for Gulp. At this point he is no longer the most ancient and powerful of all mortal dragonkind but the ONLY dragon. The shock of this, or his guilt over not being able to defend his realm, or something, renders "his powers useless". Except he still has powers (even if they're useless!) fueled by the souls of the dead. As a result, he is apparently able to bounce about in many forms doing good deeds. For whom? There is no one left but the Slayers who "slaughtered all".

The premise is interesting, but I found this backgrounder more than a bit confusing. It would actually make a good story if written out clearly.

Your spelling is sound, your punctuation generally good. However, I'd suggest you rework your premise, and pay attention to the order of ideas in this note, to improve its coherence.


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5
5
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (1.0)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*
#14

There is really nothing to review here, as this item really has nothing much to say. This would serve better as an intro to the actual story.


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6
6
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (3.0)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*
#13


First time I've reviewed song lyrics.

With lyrics, you have a little more leeway than in poetry, because the music carries the main weight. A listener is less apt to notice a half-rhyme or lack of rhyme than a reader, and the ability to stretch syllables on long notes allows you freedom with the rhythm.

It appears that you have two verses plus what might be a chorus plus what might be a bridge. It would be helpful if you identified the parts.

The first verse has regular rhythm and an ABCBDEFEGG rhyme scheme. The second verse is similar but with half-rhymes. What I take to be the chorus is ABCDBGG. The repeated GG rhymes add unity and help tie things together. The quatrain at the end looks like a bridge because of it's differences.

As poetry, it's fair to middling; as lyric, it's probably fine. Hard to tell without the music.

Write on.



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7
7
Review by Graywriter
Rated: 13+ | (2.0)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*
#12

Hi, Bruce

During my years as a teacher, I read many stories like this. Based on that experience, I'm going to guess that you're between 12 and 15 years old.

You obviously have an imagination working full-time. You've got a lot of interesting ideas, with some vivid images, all jammed together.

I suggest that you work on how you connect and keep track of those ideas. This is called coherence, which is achieved when sentences and ideas are connected and flow together smoothly without jumping around.

For example, your first paragraph really has little to do with your story, which starts in paragraph two. Your title is the One-Eye Dog (should be One-Eyed) and you mention a single eye in the second paragraph. The single eye seems to disappear after that. You do a good job of describing the toothy dog, and his intriguing response to light. You will want to either write out the one-eyed stuff at the start, or continue it throughout if it's important. BTW, some friends of mine adopted a one-eyed dog; he was a great pet and not at all scary.

Here is the basic formula for a short story:
1. There is one main character, the protagonist. There may be incidental characters but not many. You've got this -- Waynard is your protagonist, with the dog as second character. Is Ms. Tranny really important to the story? Could it be just anybody who phones in the report?
2. The character has a goal, wants something. In your story, Waynard wants to solve the case and help the dog.
3. There is something at stake if the goal isn't reached. Here, the dog will be destroyed.
4. There are obstacles that prevent the goal from being reached. The light?
5. There is a satisfying ending where the protagonist overcomes the obstacles and reaches his goal through his own efforts. I think you have that as well.

You clearly have all the basic elements. For future writing, work on having consistent flow in your story and having all the details work together.

Best
GW


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8
8
Review by Graywriter
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hey, Rey

While we're debating collaboration, I decided to check more of your work.

Good idea here, creative indeed, gave me a chuckle. A prosaic red-neck take on WWIII.

Consistent use of tense will help your story; rather than jump from past (said Paige) to present (The blast knocks), keep it all present. From paragraph three on, it's all present tense anyway, which works just fine; just change the first two paragraphs to match.

"Tsst! Goes a can..." strikes me as awkward, because it is hissing AS BOB TAKES A SWIG. How about "Tsst! Bob pops a can of ice-cold Pabst Blue Ribbon and takes a swig." BTW, onomatopoeia  is usually put in italics.

So far, I've enjoyed your flash. I'll check more of your stuff.


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9
9
Review of Vintr I  
Review by Graywriter
In affiliation with The Sci-fi Writers Guild  
Rated: E | (4.5)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*
#11

I'm not a real fan of free verse, but work like this may convert me. Here's what I see in this.

Some wonderful imagery here; my favorites "graffiti [on] our self-celled walls" and "the groping, grasping vines of social norm", in part because they roll so wonderfully off the tongue when spoken aloud. Precise word choice throughout.

The first stanza strikes me as a particularly strong introduction. From this and the next two stanzas, I get a sense of pride mounting to arrogance, of disdain and scorn, of self-aggrandizement countered by self-contempt.

I did notice the redundant use of "bound" in line 8. Perhaps another word choice for the first instance. Confined? Constrained?

The fourth stanza is a break, shown by the extra lines, by the interruption of the rhythm, and by a more philosophical tone.

BTW, Cogito ergo zoom made me chuckle: I think, therefore I online video conference. Not sure if the average reader would recognize "Cogito ergo moveto" which would mean, "I think therefore I must move". I believe future imperative is the correct tense, but my Latin classes were decades ago. Anyway, that's just my reaction. Maybe nobody else would connect zoom to Zoom.

The rhyming couplet at the end adds a contrasting simplicity and humility in both the rhyme and the word choice. It is as though an arrogant rant has run out of steam and recognized its limits.


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10
10
Review of Forever  
Review by Graywriter
In affiliation with  
Rated: E | (2.5)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*
#10


U R obviously a child of the smart phone age.

As free verse, this has impact. Might be clearer if divided into separate lines.

Not sure why Pain and Hurt are capitalized, but it draws attention to those words. Spelling: "in tens fold" better as just "tenfold"  .

For a 275 character monologue I have to write a 250 word review to get credit. *Crazy*



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11
11
Review of Forever  
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (2.5)
U R obviously a product of the smart-phone age.

As free verse, this has impact.

Not sure why Pain and Hurt are capitalized, unless to draw attention to them.

For a 275 word monologue I need to write a 250 character review in order to receive credit for my review.
12
12
Review by Graywriter
Rated: 18+ | (2.5)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*
#8

Hello, Writing Girl, and welcome to WdC.

Thank you for sharing chapter one. You've some strong characters, the essentials of plot, and a cliff-hanger ending. A lot of good things going on. A few things to work on here and there. I'll leave those to other reviewers.

Let's talk about formatting. If your goal is to be a writer, it will help to know how to format your story so it looks good to an editor.

Your first sentence, "Samuel...in Dallas, Texas" looks like a preamble. If so, it should be in italics and separated from the body. However, that sentence contains important information that really ought to be worked into the body of the story.

Many publications ask that you double-space with paragraphs indented five spaces or 1/2". Others accept single spacing with an extra space between paragraphs. Either one makes your story easier to read. Please edit this story (and your others) to one of these formats.

To move forward as a writer, you are advised to read widely, not just in your preferred genres of kidnapping/horror. Take note of how other authors deal with scenes, characters, plots. Pay close attention in your English classes and absorb all you can about grammar, syntax, and usage.

And above all -- keep writing!

 
STATIC
Gush Me No Gushes  (E)
Rant: Totally positive reviews don't help a writer grow.
#1823214 by Graywriter


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13
13
Review of Take Flight  
Review by Graywriter
In affiliation with  
Rated: E | (3.5)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*

#7

Hello, Eleanor

Ah, the wistful desire to take flight!

You are clearly working on colour imagery here, as well as the desire for freedom, and generally hit the mark with a multitude of clear, crisp images.

A few more careful word choices might strengthen the impact. For example, "at my fingertips" does not really go with the image of an arrow. Perhaps something like "the complete freedom to soar" would be more apropos. In another instance, "like a fly to the flames"--a compulsive death is hardly the image you want! Find a better simile, please. Finally, you had your hand on a balcony rail, so why are you drumming your fingers on a wall? Consistency will help build your mood.

One grammar note: alluringly is an adverb, stronger is an adjective. You need a noun in there, something like "its pull stronger than ever" or--since adverbs are evil  --"beckoned to me, its allure stronger..."

Overall, a lot of strength here that can be made stronger still with a little polish.


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14
14
Review of Forkman  
Review by Graywriter
In affiliation with The Sci-fi Writers Guild  
Rated: E | (2.0)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*


I have a confession to make: I couldn't finish reading this. I tried, several times, and got as far as the fourth scene, but no further.

There are several reasons why I chose not to finish.

The first reason is physical: I found the formatting difficult. I'd much prefer double spacing, or single a space between paragraphs. That would make it so much easier. Nothing to do with your writing, just my old eyes. If you will redo this with spacing, I'll be happy to try again.

The second reason I found this piece difficult is that I found it confusing. Take the first sentence, which started reasonably well, a decent hook--until it got to and relish in a world free of paper because every Friday was Discount Day and that meant overwork and overtime This seemed out of context because the next sentence goes back to pancakes. It lacks coherence  . The fact that it's Friday etc. has no relevance at all to what's come so far.

Likewise, I found the hospital scene almost incomprehensible and incoherent. If your intention was to create a scene of bizarre confusion, you succeeded well, and I apologize--but I still found it hard to read and grasp. For example, after an unseen person speaks, "The bearded man walked inside." Should that not be "A bearded man..."? Oh, BTW, did you know you have the bearded man turning and walking away twice at the end of that scene?

A third reason: I suggest you take care with vocabulary. You wrote about a man with monocles (plural). A monocle   is always for one eye. Nobody wears two. Likewise, you wrote about "eclectic pipes". Was that a typo? If so, please edit. If not, please learn the meaning of that word.

To sum: a good opening sentence and perhaps some good scenes, if a bit incoherent, perhaps deliberately so. A whimsical theme: superpowers of some sort conveyed by holding a fork. A touch of sci-fi with reference to a Strontium Process. All with a definite need for a good edit and cleanup.

Please remember that a review is just one reviewer's opinion. While I believe that mine is an informed and educated opinion, I reserve the right to be completely and totally off-base.


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15
15
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (4.0)
Nice to see an acrostic here. Well done, too, with the acrostich reflecting both the title and the content.

You've kept the ABABA rhyme scheme well, though in the second stanza, as you note, the meter really breaks down in line two. Perhaps you can help the second live up to the standards of the first?


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16
16
Review by Graywriter
Rated: 13+ | (1.0)
Just a quick note. Since this is in a folder titled Movie Scripts, I expected it to be in the form of a script

I came to review a script. Instead, I found a story.

Since it wasn't a script, I didn't read it.

You might consider one of the free script-writing software packages   that will help you to properly format your work.

Write on!


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17
17
Review of Midnight Spirit  
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (3.5)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*


Hello,

I think I reviewed something else of yours, but can't find it in your portfolio. Or perhaps another writer did something in a highly similar style.

Technical stuff first. Of structured poetry such as this, my opinion is that
1) The rhythm should be regular, with emphasis falling on the natural stressed syllable of words
2) Rhymes should be unforced, without odd word-forms
3) The rhyme scheme should be regular

Regarding #1, your rhythm is mostly regular iambic, with lines one and three being tetrameter and lines two and four being trimeter, sometimes ending with a trochee, at least in some verses. The rhythm varies throughout the piece, mostly good but with the occasional exception such as "Creased and dragging were my eyes and cheeks;" which either forces the stress onto the -ing or breaks out of iambic; it might be "So creased and drawn my eyes and cheeks" which is perfect iambic tetrameter. "Drawn"--looking strained from illness, exhaustion, anxiety, or pain--also fits your meaning well. "And ever forward we did ramble" could be smoothed: "As forward we did ramble". "Hoping to calm her anxious nerves" works quite well without the "hoping". As for "In a moment of unexpected courage"--please try again, this is not even close to iambic tetrameter and really grated. But since this is a work in progress, I expect that you will continue to work on this. And again, I'm being picky here -- the occasional extra syllable is not a major flaw.

Regarding #2, you use natural rhymes along with a lot of half-rhymes, though "fields"/"words" and "absurd/return" are not even close. Generally, what you have works well, without too many contortions. So mostly good here.

Regarding #3, you keep a consistent ABCB scheme throughout. Again, good here.

Oh, in stanza 6, shouldn't that be "MY eyes gleamed..."? And mightn't the "field of brambles" be more likely to be a "hedge of brambles". You could ride "along a hedge of brambles" which is a nice image.

Now, on to more important stuff.
First, I love the premise, the unexpected encounter with an older--and unpleasant--self. I'm a bit reminded of Thomas Hardy's "I look into my glass". You've a lot of effective scenes - the lonely ride, the fall of night, the fretful horse, the first glimpse of the elder you. Those stanzas are more firmly done. If you examine your work, you may note that from that point, the rhythm becomes looser, the rhymes less precise. Areas for future work.

Oh, dear, I've spent far more time on this than I had intended. A tribute to how much potential I see in this poem.

Write on.

 
STATIC
Gush Me No Gushes  (E)
Rant: Totally positive reviews don't help a writer grow.
#1823214 by Graywriter


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
18
18
Review of Journey  
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (3.5)
*Boat2*    Welcome to WdC from the "Newbie Welcome Wagon*Boat2*


Hey, welcome to WdC. Here only a few days and you've done a poem and two reviews--way to go!

I see that this has six reviews with an average rating of five. For the entire site, the average rating is 4.48; reviewers treat the stars as a pat on the back to anyone who posts. So don't be upset at my rating.
 
STATIC
Gush Me No Gushes  (E)
Rant: Totally positive reviews don't help a writer grow.
#1823214 by Graywriter


My bias is to structured poetry (regular rhythm where the emphasis falls naturally on the stressed syllables of words, regular rhyme scheme).

This piece is partly structured, partly free verse. That's fine.

The rhythm is mostly regular, iambic dimeter  , though in the first verse, the stress would fall on the -ing of "warning" and "spreading", so there the rhythm breaks down. The last line of that stanza is iambic trimeter, which also confuses the rhythm. The irregular rhythm continues throughout.

I'm presuming from the title that "it" is "love", but why not say so? "Love calls to you..."

Your rhyme scheme is basically XAXAXXXX, where the second and fourth lines rhyme and the rest do not. This is an interesting pattern but you keep it consistent and although some of the rhymes strike me as a bit forced, IMO it works well overall.

Why on earth is Chance capitalized?

The main thing I enjoy about this is the gentle images and their overall flow that give a certain tranquility of mood. "Love is patient, love is kind..." and love allows you to laugh at the unknown.


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19
19
Review of walls  
Review by Graywriter
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Some interesting imagery, though it bounces around a bit; the consistent image of walls ties it together. The disjointed images actually contribute to the gestalt of the piece.

For consistency, in a circle again. Funny, lopsided circles should be either singular in both cases or plural in both: in circles again. Funny, lopsided circles OR in a circle again. A funny, lopsided circle

This piece describes the nature of the human condition for many people. I have known women, for example, to escape one abusive relationship only to enter another...and another. In my own life, too, I have often found myself in one of those lopsided circles, "Oh, crap, I'm doing it again!" If it's any consolation, avoiding the patterns becomes easier as you get older!

This could easily be a scene in a larger work. Is there a literary novel in your future?


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20
20
Review by Graywriter
Rated: 18+ | (1.0)
I found this on Community > Please Review which means you requested a review.

However, I find it quite difficult to read with the lines broken as they are. Please reformat it so that each line fits within the boundaries of the WdC window.

One quick comment on what I did decipher: You wrote ...he removes the hand stopping the entrance from closing. When he does that, it closes. IMO that last sentence is redundant. Most readers will assume that once he takes his hand away, the door will close.

I'll be pleased to review the piece once it's reformatted. Oh, and just ignore the star rating.

21
21
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (2.5)
Hi, Nine

Of structured poetry, such as this, my opinion is that
1) The rhythm should be regular, with emphasis falling on the natural stressed syllable of words
2) Rhymes should be unforced, without odd word-forms
3) The rhyme scheme should be regular

Regarding #1, your rhythm is quite irregular, which makes the poem difficult to read aloud.

Regarding #2, we have such oddities as wide ope(n), your vein(s); that sunrise budge (say what?? maybe sunrise will budge?)

Regarding #3, you have an irregular pattern ABABCD, EFEFGD, HIHIJD (unless you intend "bass" to rhyme with "pass", but that "bass" is a fish). There is some use of half-rhymes (trickle/bubble). The repetition of the last line helps tie the stanzas together.

You do have some bits effective imagery, such as "let the walk become a trudge" or the alliteration in "tears trickle". Taking "withers" not as "the ridge between the shoulders" but "losses of freshness", makes this a highly original construct.

You said you were trying something new with this work. IMO you have achieved some success as a basis for future work.
22
22
Review of RIVALRY  
Review by Graywriter
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
It is difficult to tell a complete story in only 300 words, and I credit you with success in this one.

Your first paragraph provides setting and characters, and events in the plot move simply but quickly to a humourous if gruesome ending of "long pig" and a shrunken head.

Perhaps English is not your first language? Word choice is good, but sentence structure and verb tense could use work. If you want specifics, email me and I'll edit the story.

It gave me a chuckle at the end.


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23
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Review of Southwind  
Review by Graywriter
Rated: ASR | (3.5)
Thank you for your co-entry!

I loved the opening line, to the point where I read it aloud twice. "Artemis the elder stood atop the tower of Tanith." The alliteration is almost poetic.

In your second paragraph, you don't need the tag, "said the voice". It's quite obvious who is speaking. Not every exchange of dialog needs a tag ("said Bronus") and too many tags is intrusive. See if you can take some of them out, where it's obvious who is speaking.

King Pharen, my elder, is wise. You've created an appositive  , where "my elder" refers to King Pharen. Take out the comma after "elder".

Gotta go watch my grandkids swimming lessons. Wrap-up: you have a plot where things happen and reach a conclusion. The basis of any good story.
24
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Review of Poor Tom  
Review by Graywriter
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Loved it! I hear so many echoes!

On Ilkley Moor bar t'at

Tam o'Shanter

Jack o' the Lantern

Will o' the Wisp


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25
25
Review by Graywriter
Rated: E | (3.5)
This poem has drama and impact. That I like.

There are some strong lines and clear images. Those I like. This one especially:

And all the little things
They seem to hit the hardest
And pierce right to the heart


You don't see to know if you want rhymes or not. Some of the rhymes seemed forced (like using "chalice" to rhyme with "malice" when "I wish I could raise a glass" might serve better.) Forced and inconsistent rhymes may make some readers uncomfortable. Others won't care at all.

There are a couple of words that might be changed. Those I'd like to see fixed.

And all the little things
They seem to hit the hardest
And pierce right to the heart
And cut you at its their sharpest


"its" refers to the heart, and surely it's the little things that are cutting the heart, not the heart itself.

That life was really different
Then Than all that you’ve been shown


Then/than, an easy mistake to make and overlook when proofreading.

Now, all that aside, the second-last verse is my favorite because of its imagery, because it has the most regular rhythm and because of the half-rhyme words ending in -est. The last verse is second-favorite because of the struggle implied, and because of the two natural rhymes.


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