*Magnify*
SPONSORED LINKS
Creative fun in
the palm of your hand.
Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/howellbard3/sort_by/r.review_creation_time DESC/page/8
Review Requests: OFF
574 Public Reviews Given
Public Reviews
Previous ... 4 5 6 7 -8- 9 10 11 ... Next
176
176
Review of Neighbor Danger  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
What a realistic story -- makes me wonder if it is true.

I saw no flaws in the writing in one read. Wish I could look more closely, but must run.

Thanks for sharing this. It is truly thought provoking on many levels. I wish many people would read this and think more clearly about what they are doing.
Keep writing,
177
177
Review of ONE DAY AN ANGEL  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (3.5)
How lovely to think of yourself this way, to see death in such a positive light.

My favorite lines are:
"One day I’ll be an angel, sitting by my mother.
I’ll know peace and happiness that is unlike any other."
I also especially like the first line. I like these because they read naturally when read aloud. The rhythm rolls right off the tongue.

The problems I see here are mostly rhythm.. There is also a problem with inconsistent tense.

I hope you will continue to revise and turn it into a poem worthy of the images.

Thank you for sharing.
Elizabeth
178
178
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (4.0)
What a cheerful poem! I had never thought about the tooth fairy as a being who could shape-shift from tooth to Fairy. What a cool image.

As for the writing:
although the rhymes are consistent, there are places where the syntax is a bit distorted or sounds forced. I struggle with that myself. Recently, I Googled Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and read some of his rhymed verse to prove to myself it can be done without that effect. Of course, I'm no Longfellow, but perhaps you will become one. Plug away. You can make this a lot better. A recent past Poet Laurette of the US, Ted Kooser, said it takes him a year to write a poem. I am finding it takes me more than that.

Your poem has wonderful imagination and imagery.
Keep writing.
179
179
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (4.5)
I like this. It hits a chord with me. It is well written.

My only problem has to do with rabbits wearing glasses being called "sheeple." Why not "bunple" or "rabble." Or, have sheep wearing glasses instead of rabbits?

There is an excellent treatment of this metaphor in the musical "The Fantastics." I think you would enjoy it if you are not already familiar with it. I am glad you have not let your brain become useless with all the stuff you mention in the poem.

Thank you for sharing it.
Keep writing.
Elizabeth
180
180
Review of outback  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (4.5)
This is wonderful! It is a great metaphor for society, for change in the human condition, for individual growth - well done!

There is a typo in the last stanza.
I can see the posts, worked out of place as drunk, but I cannot see the arrogance. I can see arrogance in the false facade.

In
"Main Street, the front row, your best face, the downtown
suit, we save for church and the guy at the bank."
the comma after suit does not make sense to me. Also, it sounds like you are saying the downtown suit is saved for the man at the bank as well as for church. Is that your intent?

Capitalization and punctuation seem inconsistent to me with caps at the start of the stanza, but none after periods.

Do not misunderstand: I love this and see these as minor issues, but addressing them will improve the presentation.

Thanks for sharing it. This deserves a shameless plug.
Keep writing.
Elizabeth
181
181
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
No wonder the speaker has writers' block. He is using two powerful techniques to repress his feelings; drinking alcohol and cutting. This piece presents a very clear and disturbing picture of symptoms of an illness that is much more real and serious than writers' block.

As for the writing, I really like the format as it visually represents the inner conflict. My only reservation is the end. I don't see why he is reaching for another razor blade. It feels as if another look at the page would precede the last line.

This is excellent writing!
Keep it up.
Elizabeth
182
182
Review of Lilac Time  
Rated: E | (4.5)
This is lovely! I like how the setting of the sun and the old lilacs lead you up to the fact the lovers are elderly without letting on.

My only problem is with this line:
the couple who rest on bench beneath.
I want to read "on the bench" but "the is not there."

Thanks for sharing this.
Keep writing!
Elizabeth
183
183
Review of I'm Lonely  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (4.5)
This is a clear description of the kind of loneliness that is not coming from outside the person, but is instead from within. The unresolved nature of the poem puts the reader smack down in the middle of the problem.

This is well written, with a consistent rhythm and pattern except the forth verse which has extra syllables and breaks rhythm.

Thank you for sharing this.
Keep writing.
Elizabeth
184
184
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Excellent work! Thanks for sharing it!
Elizabeth
185
185
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Well done, Interesting ghost story with the symbolic undertail of the intensity and difficulty of abuse and the problems with forgetting.

Writing: I don't see a lot of problems and most are minor.

stanza 1: last line: "were curious with motives." there is no more mention of the motives, either directly or indirectly.

stanza 2. "we were told and urban tale" has rhythm problems. Consider "we'd heard ..."
In ballads, it is traditional to use punctuation. In this case, I think it would enhance
both sound when read aloud, and clarify meaning.

Stanza 3: fine as is.

Stanza 4: You use "down" three times. To emphasize the sense of depth, twice would
work, but three seems a bit too much.

Stanza 5: last line "he knew what he had to do." Consider using "must" instead of
"had to" for the sake of rhythm.

stanza 6: for rhythm, consider reversing order in line two" both kids and" and
replacing " teachers" with staff.

stanza 7: "and smiled all the more" rhythm and meaning are weak. ?...to watch it
roar?

stanza 8, last line: the word "and" seems out of place. ?"with" perhaps?

The rest is very good.

These are minor details that might improve an interesting poem. I hope they are of some use to you, but, remember- these are only suggestions.

Thank you for sharing this. I really enjoyed reading it.
Keep writing.
Elizabeth
186
186
Review of What Did She Say?  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Having read this and thought about it, I realized it must have something to it because I want to read it and solve the mystery that is presented and solved. I hear laughing in the words and want to laugh, too. I wonder if my projected meaning is your projected meaning, but I really don't want to know. I have nothing to criticize. Thanks for sharing.
Keep writing.

Elizabeth.
187
187
Review of Broken Band-aid  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (5.0)
I can hardly see for the tears in my eyes. I had, and lost someone like that, and then someone else. Every word rings true and good and right. I suppose I could say something about the writing, find something here or there to suggest, but I don't want to. I want it to stay just as it is, just like the speaker wants Poppy to stay the way he is. The metaphor of the band aid is very effective.
Thank you.
Keep writing!
Elizabeth
188
188
Review of Sin City  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
What a gruesome tale!
The tone and mood are carried well by clear detail.
I see no spelling, grammar, or punctuation errors.
My only reservation is at the end. It seems to me there would be no time or urge to go out again the same night as his lust would be satisfied for the time being. Besides, there would be a terrible mess to clean up. How would he have time? Also, there is absolutely no hint of reservation rooted in fear of apprehension, or some lingering element of distaste for some part of the situation. People usually have some ambivalence about any activity that is highly stimulating after it is over.
Nevertheless, this is well done!
Keep writing.
Elizabeth
.
189
189
Review of The Red Ribbon  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: ASR | (3.5)
This seems to discuss the relationship between emotion and spirituality, and the issue of external vs. internal control. It has a mysterious, somewhat mystical tone.

About the writing:
over all, there are pieces of lovely description. Sensory images are used effectively to convey mood. The image of the red ribbon is effective in generating mystery and the overall point of the story.

Problems:
This has a first draft quality, and the writer suggests it is a first draft. As such, it has a number of problems to be resolved. There is a lot of redundancy that makes reading a bit tenuous. By this, I mean, things are repeated unnecessarily generating tedium. I see a number of errors in consistency of quantity and tense.

Examples of changes that might help:
First paragraph:
I would simply drop the first sentence and let the second start the story. I would consider dropping both sentences about her heart and let the strong sensory images convey this information. Let TomasX5 have more of the role of describing her heart.

Paragraph 2: Last 2 sentences are confusing as the references are unclear.

Strengths: There are pieces of wonderful description:
"Beneath Evelyn’s arms the bright steel of the railings was cold and smooth, a single bright sensation in a mass of sepia and grey."
"The ribbon was red. It was even more red than Evelyn had imagined it to be. In the dark sepia landscape of the balcony it shone like a beacon. The nondescript man held one end in his hand, and the other end floated into the depths of the car,"
Last paragraph: writing is concise, and successfully conveys information without weaknesses found in other paragraphs.

This is a good start and has promise.
Keep writing.
Elizabeth
190
190
Review of A Woman's Charm  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (4.5)
OOOO! Sharp, descriptive, this poem could be used as tick repellant! Which is meant as a compliment to your success at conveying intensity in a few short lines. This has a nursery rhyme quality in that it is rhythmic, and it actually does what it describes - pulls the reader in, then stings.

The images used are quite traditional, as is the form, so it could have been written 200 years ago or today. As a consequence, it also has a quality that seems familiar, like a nursery rhyme. One could say it over and over, jump rope to it, or tap it out while dancing in a circle.

It's only weakness is its strength - such familiar images.

Thank you for sharing this.
Keep writing!
Elizabeth
191
191
Review of My Mother  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (5.0)
I am smiling! The ambiguity of this is luscious. The use of a limerick to say something about a relationship that often gets expressed in serious tones tickles my funny bone. It seems to suggest your mother was playful with a good sense of humor. It reminds me of my Irish relatives, who married into the family. They were always the light in the room. (I think I may have mentioned them to you in a previous review.)

Keep writing!
Elizabeth
192
192
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (4.5)
As you have reviewed a number of mine, it is only right that I reciprocate.

Comparing mathematics to the divine, or, using mathematics to describe the divine is not a new idea. However, in a time when there is a resurgence of questioning if science supports or conflicts with spirituality, it is timely to say it again.

Personally, I like when people think as this poem speaks. I find such people interesting and entertaining, and very safe to be around. This, in my mind, is all excellent.

As for the writing, it is, in general excellent. I would change nothing until the last two lines. (Ending is so often difficult!)
"Geometry is sacred. It's something we should see clear.
Without its universal laws, we wouldn't even be here."

The problem lies in the last part of each sentence. The rhythm breaks, and quality seems reduced. I would suggest something like:
Geometry is sacred as it easily describes
the essence of reality in which we all abide.

Well, that's not so great, is it? The problem is the wording seems not to match the rest of the poem, like your creative juices were running dry by the last two lines, as if they are forced. They just don't live up to the rest of the poem. They aren't terrible, and will do, until you find something better.

I see you have a fan who loves it just as it is. I approach the task of review as an opportunity to fine tune and take something very good to the level of excellent. After you have been so positive about my writing, I feel just the tiniest pang of guilt for seeing something to improve in a very fine poem. I hope the critique is helpful, nevertheless.

Keep writing!
Elizabeth
193
193
Review of "A Man Among Men"  
Rated: E | (4.0)
It is always risky to critique a poem that is so personal. It is also difficult. I question: if I felt the emotion, is this enough? What do I want to consider?

That said, what do I see here?
Rhymed couplets that don't strain.
Each line has a period at the end whether or not it is a sentence end. This emphasizes the line end focusing attention on the end rhyme and disrupting flow of speech.
The poem has a sweet and loving tone that is more powerful than other issues and gives the poem value. I feel very welcome as the reader. I love to hear stories about good fathers.
Thank you for sharing this.
Keep writing.
194
194
Review of My Best Friend  
Rated: E | (4.0)
I like the mood of this - poignant, both happy and sad at the same time. I also like the focus on nature as being reliable when people change. I can't tell from your introduction if you would like to have your meter more consistent. In case you do want to make that happen, I am offering a few suggestions. Of course, you evaluate what I say, use what makes sense to you and throw the rest away. The writing of poetry is a complex task.

Stanza 1, line three: the meter is easy to fix. Just drop "just."

Stanza 2, line 1: a two syllable word in the place of "still" would help. It occurs to me that "always" might work. There is a disruption of the rhythm in "sneak up on them" but I see no way to fix that. If you read classic poems by great poets, they often have breaks in rhythm somewhere, either because their dialect is different from mine, putting the accent in a different place, or because they would sacrifice meaning to make it fit.

Stanza 2, line 2: drop "in" and your meter is fixed.
Line 3: you could say "sometimes he hides behind a cloud"

Stanza 3 line 1: if you substitute "too" for "also," the rhythm is fixed. You might need to put commas before and after "too," but that is just an option.

Stanza 5 line 1: Dropping substituting "kids" for" children" at the start would fix the rhythm.
Line 2: "I know because I come each day" would work.
Line 3: Dropping "in" would help.

These are all minor changes. Usually, fixing meter is not all that hard.

I enjoyed reading this. Thank you for sharing.
Keep writing.
Elizabeth
195
195
Review of ALMOST DEAD  
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
This evokes deep sadness in me, and seems generally effective as a poem.

The problems I see are small details that influence the overall strength of the poem.

"My thoughts, they never change Both the comma and word "they" seem
unnecessary
Over and over, daily I wallow I would use either "over and over"
or "daily", but not both

Like a barren tree crying out in drought
Almost dead, I am I would move "watching" up to follow "am."
Watching the days go by me How about "watching the days rush by"

I continue to ignore her questions
The days have gone by so fast' If you change "watching...," this would
seem unnecessary

"The sun goes up
But the sooner it falls
I hold on to my breath" I don't understand these lines. I can't see
the connection between the sun rise
and fall and the speaker holding his
breath.

The basic idea is very good. The images are effective. The problems I see are in the details of writing. Keep working on this. It has all it needs to be an excellent poem.
Keep writing.
Elizabeth
196
196
Review of EXHAUSTION  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (4.0)
This is clear, meaningful, and interesting. I like the rhythm and rhymes. I especially like how you build the comparison to world events and the question of relative values.

There is a problem several places with over use of "and." Sometimes, it even disrups rhythm. Common usage instead of:
"Symbols and formulas, calculations and equations,"
would be:
Symbols, formulas, calculations and equations,
In poetry, you can even eliminate the other "and" if you wish.

The last sentence of second stanza Crumbles should be Crumble; the four things in line three crumble crust.

"Would they rise from their graves and change the History," It looks as if you include "the" for rhythm. Consider "alter history" instead.

I enjoyed this poem very much. Thank you for sharing it.
Elizabeth
197
197
Review of Faces  
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (5.0)
The stark, spare language communicates the mood of self searching with an attitude of shame. The result of the meditation is change. The poem does not suggest quality of change and leaves that to the imagination. The overall tone is bleak, like Edgar Allen Poe, but this piece suggests more than describes, leaving it to the reader to make the picture in their head. The repeated use of spondee in the third/middle stanza kind of hit me in the eyes and I didn't like it. I had to stop and think about what I was reading and what I didn't like. It was facing the tone with no escape. If this is what you intend, you have succeeded.
198
198
Review of Freedom  
Rated: E | (4.0)
I like the message of this poem. It is clear and worth saying. You are struggling with the ending, I think, because you are telling, not showing. I wonder how you could change that? Your approach to the subject is on the large scale, society as a whole. It is much harder to make a sound point at this level. I suspect something, perhaps several things, have triggered this poem. It would be worth your effort to reflect on what is triggering your thinking, and write a poem with a more specific story. You might come up with a stronger poem for which the ending is more obvious to you. As for this poem, the ending matches the rest of the content and there is nothing really wrong with it except you need to run your spell check on it. You are doing some serious thinking about a big subject. You may write 5 or 6 things before you get said what you want to say in the way you want to say it. Be patient with yourself and keep writing. You are headed in a productive direction.
Elizabeth
199
199
Review of Just One More  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
about the last line, I see what you intend now, and I am puzzled why I didn't understand. I obviously did not read it too fast. So how to fix that so people get it right away. Here is a suggestion: "One day when I leave, I'll return to a fire." What do you think?
Elizabeth
200
200
In affiliation with SIMPLY POSITIVE GROUP  
Rated: E | (2.5)
I am sorry, Tim, I don't get it either. It starts out well. Then, when something goes wrong in the story, the writing goes awry and the conflict or problem of the poem becomes unclear. I can't tell who the characters are; the parents over time, or the child grown and a woman with a partner. I cannot tell how this second set of relationships came into being.

I hope you find this useful. I really hate it when something is crystal clear in my mind when I write it, but no one gets it but me. I sounds as if you find this frustrating, too.
Keep writing!
Elizabeth
266 Reviews · *Magnify*
Page of 11 · 25 per page   < >
Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/howellbard3/sort_by/r.review_creation_time DESC/page/8