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*One of the most sought after reviewers at Writing.Com.* Seriously? *Laugh* There was a time my honesty could be brutal. Residing here 14 years, as a sensitive writer myself, I'm able to temper observations that neither flatter or off-put. I like to see the good, observe how each writing projects. If I review, it's mainly because I see the value. I want to strike up friendships and partnerships, though it can be quite isolating here for a non-conformist, who has bent part of the way, but not fully met with reciprocating compromise. This can temporarily cause me to bend back. *Smirk*
 
So if you want to see how I review, my feedback is public. Don't be afraid to tap in and see for yourself. *Smile* UPDATE: IF YOU'RE AN UPGRADED MEMBER, you don't have to gift me points for reviews. Send me that one free merit badge you're allotted monthly and I'll review up to 4 mid-length poems, or one short story up to 5k words.
I'm good at...
Sleeping. Retired now. I encourage writers with my reviews. I look for strengths and give direction on how to make something better. I am willing to continue to correspond with the writer if there is more I can offer. I look at what drives a reader. I think with my experience, I can see where your art derives from and is taking you. Sometimes, before the writer knows.
Favorite Genres
nature, love, psychological, drama, human interest, history, science, conspiracy, dystopian, fatalistic, tasteful
Least Favorite Genres
Horror, fan fiction, some fantasy and sci-fi, or anything Lord of the Rings/Game of Thrones-ish.
Favorite Item Types
poetry, short story, essay
Public Reviews
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Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Jen,

Your essay was very enlightening for me. It is true that prayers are needed. I couldn't help but feel that medical professionals spending 16 hour shifts doing nothing but try to keep people from dying could be praying just as hard every day knowing what they are up against (fearing the unknown) as this continues.

I think you have the right idea to suggest prayer. But, when I read this, I thought maybe there would be a little more to this essay. It's set up well talking about the pandemic and how it's affected our lives. I thought maybe it would cover how we can adapt our lives in line with prayer to instill hope, make a positive difference.

One, is to donate our time or services. I've seen so many good acts to cheer the elderly or the needy who might be alone. There are ways to quell fear through distraction. Writing here or on social media, sending positive vibes wherever. Could be spreading love and well wishes to the people fighting on the front lines or to help 'flatten the curve' so to speak. Talk about sheltering and good health habits. Talk about ways to prepare oneself for what lies ahead in these times. Knowing is half the battle.

Just all kinds of things pour to mind. I think you definitely had the right idea in approaching this subject. We need essays and opinion pieces on mental health, strategy, economics, caring for others and how to find god during all of this is part of that message of hope that's needed.

As to the writing: I would suggest pacing yourself when you write. You really show you want to get at it and wind up putting too much into each sentence. Take your time and break up those thoughts so they don't get tangled up coming out. You definitely can outline these with a few things you want to discuss and share and take one paragraph at a time, one sentence at a time, divulging.

Good job addressing this subject. Keep writing and sharing. We all need to be reminded of hope and patience to get through these difficult times, as well as power of prayer.

Brian


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Review of On Masculinity  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Dear Steven ,

I found your offering of opinion intriguing, as a person bullied lifelong by other macho acting people.

My initial thoughts: Research. I like a broad point of view when I write or read. Sometimes it's good to quote sources. I find research on a subject before giving my limited point of view helps round out the assertions I choose make. Usually, I find I may have to consider more information or back off altogether before I launch into any misconceptions.

I think an understanding of machismo and why men behave they do is not going to change that much, despite reports of these metrosexual types lurking about...perhaps, men diminished by culture seeking to adapt their behavior through forms of emasculation. Men should be allowed to express their feelings and opinions without PC societal restraint, and they should expect negative reaction to it, despite the very truthfulness they exude.

Here's what I learned about machismo:

from: https://goodmenproject.com/gender-sexuality/machis...

"The male “enhancement” women do find attractive, however, is machismo: not arrogance, but the superficial impression that a man is 100% confident in himself. Of course, none of us actually are. We all have insecurities, just as women do, but we feel pressure to hide them in order to attract a mate, the same way women feel pressure to hide their blemishes and wrinkles.
Like make-up on women, too much machismo is a turn-off, but a complete absence of it is a turn-off, as well.
It would be one thing if we only felt this pressure when trying to get a date, but unfortunately, we feel it all the time, and that is a problem. Women feel pressure to wear make-up every day, at work, at school, or even at home, and while many women like wearing make-up, they still want to see it as a choice rather than a social obligation. The same is true with men and machismo: we feel pressure to act “macho” every day, at work, at school, and even at home. Many of us enjoy acting “macho,” but we still want to see it as a choice rather than a social obligation. If we feel like crying, we should be allowed to cry in any situation where it would be socially acceptable for a woman to cry, but the social obligation to act “macho” at all times prevents us from doing so. Our machismo is valued not just in romantic relationships, but in our families, our careers, our education, and even in our friendships with other men. We have to exude it at all times, and it’s exhausting.
Men who act “macho” are not necessarily being fake, but they are only giving you a portion of who they are, just as a woman’s superficial appearance, with make-up or without it, is only a portion of who she is. Men use machismo to express themselves, women use make-up to express themselves, and it’s only when they overdo it that it can truly be called “fake.”

I happen to agree with you that men should be allowed to express themselves, if they chose a gentler or even effeminate manner. But macho, as forced as it may seem, is a result of need to feel secure in ourselves. It should be undeniable. If we regress to passivity, we risk looking the type who will be a victim of those who will not give up the right to be aggressive. I also think men learn how to use it appropriately with time, needing role models.

No one should infringe on another or their happiness in pursuit of machismo. We know a little of it is normal and good, but it should be used wisely. We don't follow weak men into battle. There are always going to be wars.

Keep an open mind to it. You will find people acting like the cock of the walk will always be around. The way to keep them in line might be through intelligence or better yet indifference. Social circles forming for open-minded people are what's needed.

Good share,

Brian


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253
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.5)

Dear Lone Cypress Workshop ,

I see some good, very solid points early on being made in your essay that compell a reader and potential listener to tune in. This opens by clearly demonstrating what freedoms we have in this country and could use a little reference to why they came to be, the historical background and that pursuit of happiness business.

I'm not certain what demonstrators you speak of. My mind went quickly to Michigan where it seems to have gotten out of hand. But, the state and it's police or militia are handling it thus far. And, that might not be what you are getting at, but it is the most extreme situation I can think of outside of inciting riots which are illegal.

The point where I'm troubled is this Conversation business. It needs to be had. But, it ignores the bigger elephant in the room: politics. We are essentially pawns in a much larger game where political leaders and money control the actions of the lower masses who would seem to prefer be quiet and just have their beer, video games and nice cars and trucks to drive to their jobs.

There are high-minded individuals who could weigh in on the debate, but then the division of wealth plays a factor. What is one man's life is extremely different from another along socio-economic lines that we don't get why the other thinks one thing is more important than another. Even though, the intellectuals should understand, it's the majority of the population that is too tied up in sports and entertainment to bother with unsolvable issues that public education did not prepare to properly assess.

I think John Lennon had a vision. Martin Luther King had a dream. JFK could have turned us into a socialist country? That's a reach, right?

You are right. We are confined within our freedoms. They don't express the same today as they did two plus centuries ago. I don't think our forefathers had enough forethought to bring the nation this far. We are doing pretty alright, except we see stuff that needs straightening out.

So, what do we have? Social media venues where we can rant and believe we will be making a difference, or just getting it out of our system until we are too tired to write and preach. So, turn on the tv, crack a cold one and go to sleep in the lazy chair. And right next to us on the floor, our dog is twitching in his sleep, dreaming of chasing rabbits.

Your essay motivated me to some thoughts. Guess this is good for motivating thoughts, the conversation, for a little while more.

Brian


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Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello, sherry6

I like this as a musing for a blog entry or something. I think it has potential to be something longer, with the right introspect. You did bring it full circle with the grass part.

When I read this it reminds me that life is a journey. It reminds me of people who say everything happens for a reason. Does it feel like divine intervention? We can't know why, but it's the mystical, head scratchers we love to ponder.

With a little detail about those jobs, life on the farm, and a little time travel in the mind recounting a few events that lead you to where you are, you got a short story. It can be non-fiction or embellished. And they say write what you know.

A lot of great expressions can point a writer in the right direction. Hope this helps.

Brian
Circumpolar Reviewer


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Review of Oblivious  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Dear Timothee ,

This is a sad story with a twist that makes you wonder about the guilt aspect portrayed by the main character. There is a moral in here someone that can be discovered. There is the head of surgery, the doctor who performed the surgery and the main character who was late for the event.

Was it fate that spared the doctor from a lawsuit? Why then the guilt? It's a short little piece that makes you think how life has a way of leading us by the nose and we don't know why random stuff happens that seems to happen for a reason.

Ultimately, and what I like, is the reader can decide what this all means. We are mad at someone for that poor woman dying. But, if she stroked out, who's fault is it really? Had we considered the victim herself for not better taking care of herself? or the family for pointing a finger of blame because they want some retribution? Should the family be mad that at the protagonist for not being in that case and would they have sued her anyway?

Or, is this just the way life happens. Random. Lots to think about and consider. But, it's really about us and our own biases at play that pull us in every direction before realizing we must accept things face value and move on.

Nicely done. Although, a doctor would not be late for surgery or not know that another has taken over their case. Really rare.

Brian


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Review of Crystal Lake  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Dear russelljjadams ,

I absolutely love the detail in this short story about a sniper who keeps a haunted memory at his side whenever he needs motivation. The descriptions and characterizations made in this story seem real and keep a reader locked into story, compelled to follow to it's conclusion. The title didn't seem to be best suited for fiction as entertaining as this.

There is a story within the story to show the character's motivation. It leaves me feeling a bit hollow, though. Not so much for this character's loss, but because he is empty inside and needs the redemption he cannot claim from his father. I think it is a desolate and needy repetition of this approval that seems unsettling. Are you proud, especially, seems a little too needy and near broken. It makes me feel he is an even colder assassin because he hunts for this need.

While he is successful in this mission against three non-descript characters who barely factor in the story, this is an internal struggle with self. A struggle that should lead to his eventual demise, unless he can find some caveat in the future that will allow him to accept his past failure.

Really well told and riveting. For myself, I am seeing an alternate ending, with him succeeding but then get some sort of release, maybe knowing he'll die trapped on that mountain (maybe deliberately knowing, through self-sacrifice) trying to execute that one last kill so he can feel he's completed some final mission that would allow him to join dad in afterlife. Your ending for me lacks some morality play, not that it's needed here. Could be just one part of a succession of stories about his misdirected need for redemption.

You've your reasons, and this is your story. And a solid piece of fiction at that.

Brian


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Review of MOTHERHOOD  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hello toni ,

Very sentimental and heartwarming poem "MOTHERHOOD about mothers who are loving and maternal toward their offspring. It's endearing to see such selective innocence about woman who are dutiful in their lone art of raising offspring.

It's touching to know that there are people who appreciate their moms and the sacrifices they make. I would go easy on the term 'all' because that is including a lot of women who have had a negative impact on a child's upbringing. That's not to malign your poem, but put in perspective by noting the women who truly aspire to this calling.

I would kindly point out women nowadays would like to be seen as more than just child bearers. it's singularity sets women in general back.

I too get a warm, fuzzy feeling for mom. SUGGESTION (for this or future poem idea): Rather than an all inclusive poem about moms, likely written for mothers day, maybe single out one really special one who comprises all the moms we're endeared to. Either someone in general or a archetype through figurative descriptions of actions.

I enjoyed that opening verse with the mom nurturing a child at her chest, perhaps harnessed or swaddled. I was actually thinking about how my own children helped me through depression in their early years, because they were so small and tender and could cuddle in my arms. There's something empowering about that. It must make being a mom so easy when you get those special, bonding moments.

You've raised a lot of good qualities about moms. I think moms will emjoy a poem that endorses them like this.

Brian
Circumpolar Reviewer
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Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (3.0)
I came across another one of your poems lucifer to see if I can lend some thoughts or suggestions.

With 'a torch of brilliancy' I see that obsession with mono-themed expressions being worded quite frenquently. As with brilliance -cry and torch. To pun, are we playing with Fire?

The repetition reads as redundancy. I know this is how you style, craft your poetry. I'm assuming there's a purpose to juxtaposing phrases into expressions, maybe for a larger project or manifesto yet revealed? But, that basically does not lend to further the theme of your poem.

I think of notes on a piano. Just simple compressions of c,b,c,b, then a,d,d,a, and followed by b,c,b,c. You can make a little melody by changing it up, but it might only craft a nursery song. You need chords with progressions, if you understand music. The same holds true with writing. Scales. We need to find words with ranges. And this is just from one instrument. You need a baseline, other accompanists to build harmony, a symphony. Your just playing two notes on one instrument over and over.

It's your style, yes. Don't you want to challenge yourself? Find greater meaning for your soul expressing? Writing is a journey. You take risks along the way, make mistakes, find greater understanding, truer perspective...just from toying around with the construct of words.

I appreciate the striking black and white symbolism. Look deep, search, find more in your artist's heart. Read poetry of others, maybe widen that horizon (even if just a little -- at a time) to let just a little more of the poetic process inside.

Good luck,

Brian
Circumpolar Reviewer


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Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (3.5)

Hello lucifer very very very 1st

I'm reviewing "no fear no practice, which I found on the public reviewing pages.

In looking in on your writing I get a feel for theme, emphasis on power of chosen words and word play that essentially reads like free associative writing.

Here the words are chosen for impact over message. It reminds of incantations. It feels you are purging words from the mind in a decided way. Let's not forget to include the reader and verbs that can activate thoughts. Prefer more active words outside the one of two repeated aggressively stated words for effect.

Everybody approaches poetry differently, even if just a little bit. I see many different flavors to try. I stopped here to see what you offer, what motivates and inspires the writer to share. Hopefully, in the process, I will learn and grow from this experience myself. Hopefully, I can lend more than a kind comment as I consume and digest your writing.

All the best,

Brian K. Compton
Circumpolar Reviewer


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Review of Private Cell  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)


*Rainbowl*THIS IS A REVIEW FROM Brian K Compton *Rainbowr*

*BalloonBl* }*BalloonBl* }*BalloonBl* }

Hey There,

I came across another item of yours on WDC listings while reviewing for my group.
Thought it would be a good idea to return to read and review more of your stuff.

This poem was very tragically told. It's unfortunate when we have regrets. It's sad that the narrator of this piece wants to die to put his guilt and shame in the balance.

very tragic depictions recalling what I assume was a fiery auto wreck caused by his negligence. Unfortunate story of living with consequences.

Great that you are sharing your writing with us here. I appreciate the effort to produce this piece. It was a pleasure viewing your writing again.

Keep up the great writing,

Brian
Circumpolar Reviewer


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Review of Moonless Night  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.0)


*Rainbowl* THIS IS A REVIEW FROM Brian K Compton *Rainbowr*

*FlowerV* *Poseyp**FlowerR*

Hello,

I came across this item of yours on WDC listings while reviewing for my group. I think that the title of this item is perfect for it, very appropriate. The item description was very helpful.

Your poem ended on a funny note. I also wondered about going out in a boat on a moonless night. Might be the flaw in your story. The last line, which eliciting a chuckle, made me think instead of losing the cloak it should be the act of getting wet as a cloak. The repeating expressions at the end of each stanza I've seen work better in other poems. It's a wistful piece but only scratches the surface of what the poet is feeling.

Thank you for sharing your writing with us here. I appreciate the hard work put into this piece and hope to return for me in the future.

Keep writing,

Brian



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Review of My 911  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.0)


*Rainbowl* THIS IS A REVIEW FROM Brian K Compton *Rainbowr*

*Lightning2* }*Lightning2* }*Lightning2* }


Thank you for sharing this gripping, heartfelt poem. I appreciate your personal experiences described in this raw piece, reaching to collect memories for perspective on what is important. It's about feeling safe and need for security in life and choices. It's relatable.

The sequencing of events a little uneven to get to that final revelation. Looking for a tighter, more cohesive grip on a worthy subject to drive home the point of this poem. A worthy endeavor and life affirming.

Appreciate the hard work you put into writing this item. Hopefully, You'll keep writing so I can keep reading.

Brian
Circumpolar Reviewer


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Review of Waiting....  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.5)


*Rainbowl*THIS IS A REVIEW FROM Brian K Compton *Rainbowr*

*Poseyp**Poseyp**Poseyp*

Hello, I came across another item of yours on WDC listings. I was intrigued by this poem about the oft discussed subject of poetry, love.

So love is waiting to happen in all these places? Good listing.

in shadows
underneath rocks
attics
in books
on silver screens
in ballads

But, "the wait is forever and haphazard..."

I enjoyed this expression: "Flying in myth/With diaper and bow." Image of cupid made me laugh a little. And love does all these things?

wilts and grows
soothes
comforts
pains
kills

Maybe a more apt and extended list could help there. Then you repeat, "It has no direction," which was redundant. it's depicted as:

"It's weak and it's firm.
It's wise and it's shallow.
It's saved many lives
And sent men to the gallows."

Nice. Then, building a little history:

"Helen knows its started wars.
John professed it would bring peace.
Cleo read it from the stars.
Beauty found it with the beast."

But then we're back here:

"Looking in shadows
And underneath rocks,
I don't have forever
For my life has a clock."

Sounds like impatient waiting for love. I liked the next two lines and the third in final verse for it's sarcasm, but the ending line left me a little confused and let down that this didn't punctuate better.

"If an arrow flies
I'm never struck.
Can a blind archer aim?
Do I always duck?"

Was a pleasure to come across you again,

Brian


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Review of Childrens' Dreams  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)


*Rainbowl* THIS IS A REVIEW FROM Brian K Compton *Rainbowr*

*Poseyp**Poseyp**Poseyp*

Hello, I came across this item on writing.com's auto rewards list as I was reviewing for my group. I think that the title of this item is perfect for it, it is very appropriate. the item description of this piece is very helpful to the reader.
I do believe that this is the first time that I have had to opportunity to review and read your stuff. good going.

So true:
"If children knew that fun times don't last forever
Would they know to enjoy them even more..."

Very introspective stuff from someone who has experienced life and considers our children as they move toward the future.

Thank you for sharing this wonderful piece of literature with me I appreciate your poem and the hard work you put into writing this item. Hopefully, You'll keep writing so I can keep reading.

B


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Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.0)
There is a lot at work in your poem that could use closer inspection from the psychology behind this write to the use of collected metaphors, and the focus on last scene and intended message. Then, can get to language and description with this type of poetry.

This is a dream to me. The dream parallels a relationship that ended with narrator feeling confused and hurt. Everything was fine at outset, serene. The metaphorical fish seem to start a chain of events that summon an angry Neptune. Neptune represents someone powerful enough to sever the relationship. This betrothed apparently decides to leave while the main speaker is left shocked and stunned. And then, the ending.

The way this person walks across the water made me think of Jesus. I'd like to think it's not that. It's a person who symbolizes salvation, who could have been a savior of sorts for someone looking for purpose. Possibly, in this burgeoning relationship that ends suddenly and painfully.

The only misleading part to me is the title word 'gambling.' It's confusing because if risk was involved, it wasn't revealed. If surprise occurred, it should have been knowable and end result wouldn't be as shocking. I'm grasping a bit, I'm sure.

Ultimately, if this is a poem as a dream, the quick disconnects of imagery and moments roughly work. There might be a few punctuation issues. But tighter, more stabbing depictions of moments, of actions work best to reveal. That's what demonstrates so clearly emotion in your poem. Imagery is very good. It could be more defined but functions thematically.

Just a bit raw. A tighter edit with focus on flow for a smoother read could help it along further

Brian


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Review of Quarantine and 40  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (5.0)
I like stuff like this. It can get pretty eerie sometimes when prophecies start to line up with world events. I could find some holes in this, however.

Michigan and Wisconsin's shelter in place will last longer than 40 days (among other states and countries throughout world). A lot of coincidences, though. I would say it's pretty cool but definitely not a sign of the end of days, yet. We need locusts, I think. Famine? Drought? I give it another 20 to 40 years, on or about.

This virus is a pinnacle in the world's history. It's something we all share at once. Quite unusual but maybe just the beginning of a future world plagued by outbreaks like this and worse. Hopefully not.

Brian


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Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Love is not innate, the author of this poem implores citing great examples of how we selfishly look for passions to 'coincide' with others to feel something.

You do well to create argument for 'man is essentially evil,' though this is not what you are proposing. Just triggered that old debate for me.

Pleasure to read,

Brian


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Review of Time For Regrets  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: 13+ | N/A (Review only item.)
This reminds me of the value of isolation and it's affect on contemplating what's important. We could grow stronger, more united, more thoughtful after this. Your poem inspires wonderment of how we'll live and love going forward.

Brian


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Review of Trust Me  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.5)
This poem does well to instruct the addled narrator to understand that we all have doubts about our faith and that we must be patient when we don't have the answers we need immediately. Well constructed conversation in poem with God about your willingness to follow and be patient through a critical time in one's life.

I get what you're doing by capitalizing the pronouns early on to suggest this is a conversation with Him. I think the more that capitalization is stressed, it took me away from the message. Only because there are a lot of pronouns used. It's not wrong to properly capitalize those words, but became distraction from what you beautifully wrote. And that's just me, it might not be a problem for others.

I am not deeply religious but well-versed in how we are supposed to follow through Blind Faith. That God has a plan and that we should be patient through difficult times. So this poem is well received in that regard and comes correct as far as I am concerned.

Especially now,

Brian


I'm Circumpolar Reviewer *Star*


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Review of The Question Box  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
Hi,

This was fun. Too bad. You know, it lines up.

But, we would find a reason to go to war with anyone who might try to apply pressure on us to pay. And while our country may have lost favor with countries since President Trump, we are the world's protector. We are the mafia, yes! We put military installations in countries worried about their own defenses, and that speaks louder than money.

Patriotism is what keeps us strong. China can't break us, even if they made this virus to weaken us. There are signs they are using the World Health Organization to cover up their shame. Things may be worse over there than they seem. Just ask Japan about their petition to remove the leader of WHO for propaganda campaign and misinformation that led to this messy nightmare we're in.

Our great debt to China has been known for years. They had the last four years, since Trump bullied them, to reply. You think in an election year, it's the right time. I think they're scared of us. We'll call any bluff.

Don't get worked up over one person's opinion. A conspiracy theory that is the stuff of fiction by someone wanting your attention is omitting a lot of other information to spin their own theory. I'm just basing it off your synopsis here.

We have the ability as a free nation to collect information from many sources. Freedom of press. Yes, wealth rules the world. But, this is like a giant board game of Risk. Military is our strength. When we lose that, I'd worry.

Until then, fire up the Keurig and binge watch any content you like. We are the Kings and Queens in the end.

I would advise not to spread doomsday principals without giving balance to what you opine, because you would be no better than the Youtuber who scared himself with his own fiction. My advise, sleep with the light on, if it helps. *Laugh*

I want to see that video. Could you link? Got to run now, cash in my investments Monday. *Laugh* Darn. I really wanted to buy Nike, Apple and Google stock, too. Got 10k burning a hole in my pocket.

Capitalism. Am I right? Go figure. So, socialism was never a consideration?

B


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Review of Gone  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Dear Liz,

In response to your poem, Gone.

Would it be lonelier if the door was unlocked? Houses lock from the inside. Is it lonely because you won't let anyone in? Or, is it lonely because you're door is always open and no one ever comes inside? These questions are meant to provoke writer, reader and reviewer to consider what lies beneath the poet's offering.

I'm working off a metaphor in your poem that the house is the narrator, who I can suppose is you. When you're sitting there during the quietest time of day, that's when it hits you -- this experience you feel. There's not enough to bog a mind down with distraction. For a brief time, reality sets in and our brain is left exposed to realize we are alone. How is this possible?

It's been proven that being in absolute silence could drive a person insane. Imagine someone stranded on an island. Worse, stuck in isolation for an extended time, as with a prison. What keeps us rational? For prisoners, tapping on walls to seek signs of other life to inspire hope in spite of loneliness incarcerated. For Tom Hank's is was to talk to a volleyball...in Castaway. We need something for our senses to work on. And how did your poem depict it? Just before dark, lights out. I imagine quiet. You captured it!

Nice work. Thought I'd help you realize what your subconscious was revealing to you, inspiring you to write this. It's a great discovery. Your mind will probe you more. Stay open to inspiration like this, it's not lost on me.

Brian

PS -- If someone gives you a short, dumb little review, remember this. We can discover a lot in a few words, if we know where to look. There's a lot of reviewers here who are distracted with other things than an insightful review. Maybe, they should review just before dark...or in isolation. Anyway... Don't be discouraged by them. Just keep writing.


I'm Circumpolar Reviewer *Star*


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Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Do you love her, or what you can't have? That was my initial thought upon reading this. We often romanticize someone who is not into us. Entire movies are made about this subject, making all the lonely hearts swoon when boy/girl gets whomever at the end.

This poem was not out of the ordinary but reads and is structured well with only modest grammar, punctuation error. The subject to me is not unusual and appropriately asks questions like a unraveling some mystery.

What is revealed psychologically is why we just don't go after what we want. Fear of rejection, resulting shame. Maybe. But, is it borne out of low self-esteem? Lack of character. Maybe, it is deserved not to have what we want because we didn't pursue it. This reads like he's given up. But, it's not even over in my book.

In this poem, she has been less available, drifting away. Maybe, she has a story, too. Maybe, he's just not that into me. Think about it. Why waste your time wth someone who won't make the first move? My advice: go for it. Don't be piteous. Be bold. You're going to lose her anyway. Just walk right up, tell her how you feel in private setting. If she gives a sign, lay one on those lips. If she says no, you should feel good. You can move on. Find another. Her loss. And if you confidently walk away, guess what? She'll be the one romanticizing about you. She'll slide right back into your life. And when they do slide back, make her work for it a little, just to be sure she means it. They're just as fickle about romance, self-worth.

I think she'll reconsider, if you act like a man.

My advice. Works for me.

B



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Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (3.5)
It might take some doing but I'm sure the ending to this poem could be devised by a reader. I found setting and theme intriguing, wanting to understand this type of ceremonial union. Is it real, metaphor or dream?

What's unfortunate is a few technical errors like repeating 'hair' in that open and using 'then' instead of than and 'on' instead of in. But that's not the confusing part. The second half has me wondering if voice changed or if there is confusion over 'dark hand' (assumed person) versus 'pale' fingers. If it's symbolism and not real, it's not clear. I just assumed the object of interest would be the only one described throughout.

It sounds like somebody else grabbed her, and why are the pale fingers clutching the boquet and not her? Who's running out with whom or what? Just confusion over devise, theme and functionality over narrative style. I got lost.

B



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Review of Me in the inside  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Nice twist at the end. Who would know you better than you.

In a way, I see this whispered to oneself, or as if off to someone else we wish to talk to, while wrapped under sheets in bed, with one eye on the moon out the window. If you break from the form, speak to an object, it romanticizes more the words conveyed.

And can I just say, we need to break from stale language and economize words. What you express is lost in that wrap of meager words. Example of an edit with this scene suggested...

Beneath my covers, through window
you glow white beneath heaven
I am the one thing that sees who you are,
         who knows if you're a star,
         sees your disguise,
         knows your demise.

As you rise, through this glass
I spy how you hide from me
I know the cover-ups and things you say,
         how you lie every day.
I know you better than you know yourself,
         you're mind and what lurks in wealth.

I know of your heart and how it just sings,
you want to fly with angel wings.
You want to fly off from this earth,
Escape all your troubles starting from birth.

I also know that you live on the 'Why?'
I know your loyalty will never die.
I am the thing that will keep you awake,
Time when you let go and will never take.


Do we even need the ending at this point? Last line above is a beat weak. Can we assume the narrator is not talking to self. In that open, you could add reflection paired with window or glass. Just a suggestion to spruce up. It's your poem. Most don't make changes but take note before considering another. Just my opinion.

B


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Review of Little Bird  
Review by Brian K Compton
In affiliation with Circumpolar Reviewer *ALL CASE...  
Rated: E | (3.0)
This is a very simple and sad poem that we can assume is a bird that metaphorically represents how writer/narrator feels. I can't imagine we need to look too deeply at this, except to wonder what is next for the poet. Where do you go from here?

One thing I can suggest is develop metaphor, a talent expressed here. Find something richer and deeper to explore to pair similarly. I suggest personification. Take something inanimate and associate it with human depictions or feelings.

I feel bad for that little bird. Imagine it has x's for eyes now. *Sad*

B


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