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Printed from http://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/njames51/sort_by/r.review_creation_time+DESC/sort_by_last/r.review_creation_time+DESC/page/6
Review Requests: ON
337 Public Reviews Given
Review Style
I am pretty easy going. I don't want to bash your poem. I look for rhythm, color, formatting, form, meter, style, imagery. I look, I listen. I appreciate. For more go to my Poetry Review Forum #1399834 or find it in the Review Forum List.
I'm good at...
Encouragement, helping you when you need it. Suggesting better words or lines, and challenging you to do better and not settle for boring words, lines or writing crap.
Favorite Genres
Poetry - all types but especially free verse.
Public Reviews
Previous ... 1 2 3 4 5 -6- 7 ... Next
126
126
Review by njames51
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Welcome newbie!

I like this alot. This is a sweet beckoning to a cloistered soul, who defied the resignation of one living in that time. She would most certainly be a friend to many in our age. Your poem has a kindness, and a softness, and a bloom to it. It shows good use of descriptive language, and floats melodically. You have some sweet lines here:

Death laid open and bare upon the table
No longer the old bogey of our nightmares--
But a kind and courteous friend
Come to ease our pain

Thank you for being more
than they ever dreamed you were
More than the reclusive maiden lady
More than the ghostly moth in white

We would have been great friends, you and I

I think Dickenson would have been honored by your words.

Nice job!
127
127
Review of Ascension  
Review by njames51
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Wow, nice job! This has such a lyrical melody to it, a cascading out of vitality. It zooms along in a staccato type explosion of thoughts, quite indicative of a free-falling out-of-body dream. So many wonderful word diversions:

Or maybe admittance
to confusion is a step up
from my confused confines.

I really enjoyed this entire piece.

Wonderful!
128
128
Review of Secrets  
Review by njames51
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
This is a wonderfully simple expression of hope and longing, and quiet ponderings. Have we not all wanted to have someone we could express this to? It is soft and personal, and revealing of what love can be.

I want to shout that I love you
And hear my love returned
I want to whisper that I need you
And hear an echo of the same

Very nice piece!
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129
Review of Disillusionment  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (4.5)
Very nice! But of course, because you wrote it....your stuff is always good. This has nice imagery, nice flow, a sensibility of ease to it. It's relaxing to read. The only problem for me, was the use of the "not by" and "by not" inclusions. Maybe I'm just tired, but I did seem to trip over those. The second stanza has "by not" instead of "not by"....now I'm confusing myself just saying that! Oy vey.

Anyway, I did love the piece.
130
130
Review by njames51
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
Excellent piece! A wonderful melody of words that blends lightly in our minds, this piece helps us wander through the images of a great city. The poem caresses and carries the reader through the vibrancy of New York City. Loving the city as I do, this piece brought past memories to life. This is soothing and bountiful. It has a lyrical quality.

whose white sienna marble
turns hue with the daylight and opens
onto the downstairs where walls are
the color of ripening winter wheat.

There must be a fine edge on each
fine horizon that ceases to move,
in the distance, but stays, as we do,
detached, and totally aware.

These are wonderful lines. The last stanza is beautifully written.

Great job!
131
131
Review of God Is On My Side  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (4.0)
Welcome Newbie!

This is pretty cool. It has fire. It has energy, it has emotion. The rhythm of the piece is off, and there are grammer errors. But, who cares! Sometimes, we just have to get out our feelings, and our anger. And you have done a good job backing the devil off, and poking him, and putting him down where he belongs!

God Bless! Keep up the good fight!
132
132
Review by njames51
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
Ah, a sweet poem, richly subtle, and inviting!

She has
the sentient look of one whose image is
forever deep and placid as your own.

What a nice flow of language, wrapping and molding for the tongue. One leaves the poem with refreshment and wonder, and a smile.

Very Nice!

(I'm going to stop reviewing your stuff....it's too good!) LOL...

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133
133
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (4.5)
I love this...very nice. I love these lines:

I loiter shamelessly among your darker days,
intrude upon your hours of desperate isolation,

The last two lines read awkwardly for me, but, that's o.k. I just wish you'd make this piece longer, I'd like to relax in this mellowness of language all afternoon!

Good job!
134
134
Review of The Fool  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (4.0)
This is an interesting poem. It has some good imagery:

A sorrowful beam of the sad, sad moon shone,
piercing through the sad, sad clouds.

I don't have any problem with the theme of the poem, only with much of the descriptives. Example:

The thunder clapped angrily, the lightening crackled with frustration.

These are common words used to describe thunder and lightning. "the thunder clapped"......"the lightning crackled..." I think if you delve deeper, you'll find other ways to describe thubder and lightning.

His soul burned with grief,
his eyes with tears,

Again, you use common descriptives. I'm more interested in knowing how it feels for a soul to be burning. I'm more interested in knowing more about eyes burning with tears. What can you compare that with?

You see what I'm saying? Give this imagery more depth, make the reader understand it better, and relate to it more.

I think the theme of the poem is fine, but the words don't give the poem punch or lasting impression for the reader. There are also spelling errors that need to be fixed.

Work on this some more, and try to really get more depth and meaning into the word choice.

KEEP WRITING!
135
135
Review of Photograph  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (4.5)
This is a bitterly sweet wave of remembrance, and a sad longing for the past. There is such emotion here, and a beautiful stream of imagery. Lines I loved:

You took me to a place away from the trail
where we could watch the sunset in the creek's reflection.
I took a picture that night, of only the upside down rippling trees,
but everything else stands out in my mind
like my own personal still-frame summer.

This is filled with an innocence, and a sorrow. I think the lines could be formatted differently, but, then that might change the read, so, I'd say just leave it the way it is.

Good Job!
136
136
Review by njames51
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
It's fitting that I read this on Easter Eve after having gone to the first Easter Mass. I couldn't stop reading this story. It was very moving for me, and made me appreciate more the events of that Good Friday, and the subsequent joy of Easter.

I guess, for me, what makes a story good, is my need to continue reading it. When I'm not hung up on the lines or the words, or the structure, then I know it's done it's job. I am no expert on story writing. I only know what holds my interest.

The voices of Mary and Peter, spoke in a natural, human way. The words were not brittle or manufactured. They seemed true to the events and the emotion.

Altogether, a piece that gave me reflection, and a new view of the suffering of God's Holy Mother.

Thank you for writing this!

Happy Easter! He is Risen!
137
137
Review of Morning Sun  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (5.0)
Another wonderful expression of words. This is magical, mystical, inviting for a reader's mind to swirl in contemplation and reflection. Wonderful lines:

Old Sol slides higher in the sky,
Causing colors below to live,
For life is indeed his to give.
Butterflies flit, pretend they're shy -
Summer at its most creative.


Another great job!
138
138
Review of Evergreen  
Review by njames51
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
Ah, yes, a lovely, sweet remembrance! A love poem that finally fulfills the gaping need for reverence of that subject. This is a soft weave of cloth that delicately moves the reader, and invites contemplation of the beauty of love. Favorite line:

So, my love, beside you I want to stay.
Until the woodsman's ax bites deep within,

A wonderful piece! Thank you for restoring my faith in
poetic expressions of "love."

Great Job!
139
139
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (4.0)
I found this in my Review Forum. This is an interesting play on the ballad format, and I like the repetitive beat in the lines. The reader must get accustomed to the rhythm, however. Lines I liked:

Watched by hawks and sparrows,
Into the cold creek water,

Spraying freezing water 'round,
Into rye fields gold and high

I think the piece works well until the last two stanzas. The last line of the fifth stanza is awkward, and the last stanza needs re-working. The final line of the piece is awkward and confusing to me. You begin the ballad with the subject making a journey to spread news....but then it veers to going to a lady's house, and then it just drops off into something we don't understand.
I suggest keeping the theme of the beginning verses, and changing the last two verses to reflect more of the initial theme.

You have good use of rhythm, though, and it's an interesting idea for a ballad.

Keep Writing!

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140
140
Review by njames51
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
I liked this alot. It reminds me of my father, who also used the "Invisible Band-Aid" routine with me. There's a nice presentation of stanzas here, and the emotion comes through well. This I liked:

It's funny how things change
You grow up and realize
That invisible Band-Aids are nothing,
That your dad isn't Superman
That, in fact, he can't fix anything

I would have liked a continuation of that thought....how we grow up and realize Dad isn't Superman, he can't fix everything....

The last two stanzas change the feel of the piece rather quickly. I guess I wasn't prepared for that shift in mood. But, I can't be critical of the writing, or the use of those stanzas. For me, I suppose I just wanted the poem to continue in the previous vein.

Altogether a good piece!

KEEP WRITING!

141
141
Review of Votive  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (5.0)
I love your writing. I always enjoy reading it. I seem to linger over words, and pause to absorb their effect. Good writing does that. You have a subtle use of language that seems to whisper to the reader. I always love your titles. "Votive" is a relaxed, angular title for this. And I always enjoy how you structure your lines.

It was
as if

I love the use of that to begin each stanza. It's a romantic, fluid opening for what is to follow.

The imagery is quite beautiful. The comparison of the candle to the "autumn evening's sun".......the use of wax to portray petals and blossoms.....it's all so ethereal and light in it's mood.

And this is wonderful:

It was
as if
he begged
of her new life
from what was ashen,
and would not reach for heat
that he might wait for passion.

I love that last line......it wraps the entire piece so perfectly, and ties all the images together.

Excellent job!

Thanks for allowing me to review this!

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142
142
Review of Placesettings  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (5.0)
This is wonderful!

What a superb, interesting subject to use as an analogy. This, again, uses wonderful imagery, and delicate language. Each word is carefully chosen for it's place in the piece. Nothing is wasted. The structure of the lines is excellent. The line breaks are perfect. A marvelous job!

KEEP WRITING!

** Image ID #949181 Unavailable **
143
143
Review of Against the Wind  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (5.0)
Welcome newbie!

Very nice writing! This moves easily. There is not a wasted word. It is brief, tightly written, and carries the reader through your experience. It shows good imagery, and uses nice visual language.

Good examples:

To dig deep into
Rock or sand,
Mountain or blackest soil
And put forth roots,
To curl down into the depths
To cling moist and spread
Among the rocks-deeper still
Until these shoots find glory

Excellent Job!

KEEP WRITING!



** Image ID #949181 Unavailable **
144
144
Review of First Winter  
Review by njames51
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
I peeked into your folder and found this.

This is beautiful. It's such a soft haven of mood, and life, and remembrance. There is not a wasted word. And the joy of reading a poem this nicely written, is that it gives the reader an emotion to sleep with, to dream on, to recall through his own life experiences, days he too can remember.

Thanks for writing this.
145
145
Review of Under Oak  
Review by njames51
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
A marvelously good poem. This has beautiful imagery, a passion that whispers to the reader as we are wrapped in words of nature and limbs. We want to keep reading, keep experiencing the kindly flow of the sounds.

This is wonderful:

The press

of earth's year weighed out in beauty,
there is color everywhere, and kneeling,
and the scent of you, longing in dusk;
we lie coupled beneath, canopy reeling.


Excellent writing!

GOOD JOB!
146
146
Review of Crystal Drops  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (5.0)
Welcome newbie!

Very nice poem! This has wonderful imagery, a nice Robert Frost feel, a smoothing romanticism in it.

Lines I like:

Deep in the lonely woods of despair,
Empty trees stand forlorn....

I looked up at the starless heavens,
Save the pale and ashen moon...

I will last the night.
I will wait it through.

There may be objections to the way the stanzas are formatted, but I'm not going to squabble about that. I think your use of language to create images is perfect, and you have a nice feel for patterns of lines, and the brevity of words.

Altogether, a wonderful read!

GOOD JOB! KEEP WRITING!

Recommended: For imagery and mood.
147
147
Review of When I'm Gone  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (4.0)
Welcome newbie!

Very nice poem. I like the play of the end line of each stanza, how you wrap it around, and connect it to the whole. It makes the piece tight, and wraps the reader into more understanding of the idea expressed.

An interesting subject.

One error: no = now.

But, altogether a nice job!

KEEP WRITING!
148
148
Review of Looking skyward  
Review by njames51
Rated: E | (4.5)
Welcome newbie.

Very nice poem! Good imagery, contrast.

A fine piece of writing! It is brief, but there is not a wasted word!

Good job! KEEP WRITING!

And, welcome to writing.com. I hope to be able to review some of your other work in the future!
149
149
Review by njames51
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
Holy Moly, do I agree with this!

There are so many things I don't read or review because of many of the things you have brought up.

The Description Box is a big road block! I scroll down pages, and pages of items, and the brief descriptions just keep me scrolling. Sometimes the author tells me how great it is, and I better read it!....(yeah, right, I'll get right on it).... or they tell me they are not getting enough reviews.....(I wonder why).....or they tell me EVERYTHING about what I'm going to read (which takes the mystery out of even reading it).

Spelling mistakes make me hit the BACK button right away. I'm not talking about complicated words, I'm talking about SIMPLE words. It's not that difficult to have a dictionary near the computer, folks! Proof-reading is not that time-consuming. If a word LOOKS backward, then it's probably backward.

And long chunks of text make me weary before I even begin reading. My eyes start glazing over.

Anyway, this was an excellent piece, and offers superb suggestions for everyone. I've taken notes for my own monitoring, so I can avoid the "literary police"!

Thanks for writing this!

(...now where's my Spell-Checker...)





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Review of Addiction  
Review by njames51
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
This is very nice. This is a good examination of how love for an addict transforms the view of oneself. And, it reveals how we are viewed by others, not in relation to ourselves, but as an appendage to the addict.
Unfortunately, that's the way it is. Addiction is the pink elephant in the room: everyone sees it is there, but no one wants to SAY it is there. So, the whispers, the glances, the frowns of people in our world always reflect this knowledge. And, somehow, the person WITH the addict is subjected to judgement for their choice of companions.
The writing is good, the imagery is good.

Phrases I like:

Sometimes when you breath in the dark, the smell that lingers is one of sweetness and rot........Those moments, I understand what hate is because I hate you – hate myself for being in love with you.....I hate the way people look at me –like something must be broken about me that I would accept the affections of a drunk over someone normal..... I hate that being with you makes me feel like less of a credible person myself....

These are nicely written clues to your struggle.

Nice job. This could certainly be expanded. There is so much to be said on this subject.

KEEP WRITING!

Recommended: For good emotional content!
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