|Hello Steven Wheeler,
Welcome to WDC - Writing.com. Noticed you joined in July and already have your portfolio going. Awesome. Thought I would give you a review on your first item.
Title; It seems o.k., maybe not as original as could be. "The Pain Of Regret" is used so, so often in every tale, story, biography, poem, even and before the Civil War. Perhaps you could mull on another title, and ask for feedback from other member. Remember, we have to grab 'em ASAP, and the Title and sub-section is where we have to give them a curiosity that , hey, this might be a pretty cool poem.
We'll go back to that. Your piece contains three stanzas/ verses or whatever you call them. You have two stanzas with 4 lines each, then a 5 line stanze, and finally one 4 line stanza followed by a space and a single line.
Note: I will make suggestions re: your verse, the imagery, rhythm structure, flow, consistency, "filler words" and ways to improve or to at least go back and rip out half the lines etc. not a personal attack on my part, but wouldn't you rather get feedback HERE from other writers, rather than the critics in magazine rags who 1. will never read your poems period, 2. Will glance at it and sling across the room to the other 200 stacks of "genius poets"!
THE PAIN OF REGRET
Verse #1 and verse #2 use the rhyming pattern of AABB. Verse #3 uses a pattern of 5 lines with the pattern being AABCC. The last verse goes back to 4 lines and the AABB pattern.
I'm not saying that it wrong, but it clarifies what process you are using in structuring this piece. That's very important for you and for the reader. They have to know you have a map and are leading them through a jumble of word salad which will happily appeal to them. so structure and discipline is paramount when "designing" this work of words, feelings, imagery, and having the ending be satisfying to your reader.
3. SPECIFICALLY: Line 1: Rhythm is off. I would cut "HERE" AND "LITTLE". The line would begin: "I am broken into pieces again." (the reader understands you are 'there, here, somewhere!' Also pieces are viewed as 'little pices' innanetely by a reader when a subject matter is broken love. They understand "I AM BROKEN into pieces AGAIN! Every single soul knows THAT FEELING AND HURT.
Now the NEXT re-writing exercise on this work must center around the RHYTHM. THE FLOW, THE NOTES (as in piano notes, chords, harmonies etc.). In writing poems one does this by "Counting the syllables" in EVERY LINE. You're not required to have 'perfect rhythmatic sylablle words.....(in free verse, the whole goal is never to form to a FORM. But since you have decided to use a recognized poetic static rigid form....you must adhere to the rules involved.
Example: read your first verse A LOUD.....in your room, a field, the shower. When YOU HEAR your words, it is scary and yet amazingly effective in you understanding that.... "wow, they didn't sound right" "Geez, the rhyming end words are boring, trite, and dull. " "Damn, the first line reads slower than the second line or forth or fifith......and Verse #2 is way longer and really CONVOLUTED."
oR PERHAPS NONE OF THE VERSES SAY ANYTHING OR AREN'T REAVEALING ENOUGH.
Example; Verse one.....
"I am broken into pieces again." (10 syllable count) end rhyming word "again"
"ripped and torn [it] just never ends." ((8 syllable count) end rhyming word "ends"
Line #3: "madness flowing ..+++that word is present tense, awkward with, the previous structure.....the breakup has already happened, past tense..
"Madness flows through my veins" (5 syllable count only!) BB ending word rhyme is "stain"
Line #4: "The blood it spills, leaving a darkened stain" (11 syllable count). End BB rhyming word is "stain".
Now read the first verse OUT LOUD and to someone you know and trust who won't bulls*** you (riends will say it's very moving and beautiful). However, a more respected critic, teacher, mentor...will tell you the TRUTH. and that is NOT failure.....it is learning, listening to those who teach you, knowing, growing in your writing.
I like the piece, I haven't been around reviewing much, but came across this, and the potential is there. your rhyming structure works at times and that is easily remedied. Your syllable count is fixable also by putting similar words in place of words that don't flow easily due to akward words or syllable counts.
Very nice use of a poem format, willingnes to us a rhyming format and the words were not God-awful. I commend you for that. The title and sub-explanation I would change....but first re-write..re-write...RE-WRITE!
Best to you on your journey and welcome to WDC.