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Animal Cremationer

“Clydesdale face!” The deadened thumping
of their heavily galoshed feet was sickening.
I’ve spent the morning – the girls jumping nearby
on souring horse bodies
– shoveling cats into the furnace.
If you look long enough, everyone is animal;
my wife an easily loved heron.
I whisper to my turtlish son of the maggots
he clutches: we, like they, make dead things become.
He gaily sinks them into the goose ash pile
from the flock that last week challenged a building’s
soundness. Cat lipids burn warm and slow.
Rainfall turns the ground softer; different.
Things were wrong when teachers sent my turtle home
holding mice he had strangled.
“I was helping them change.”
There is no more macaroni. My girls pluck
from the bone buckets the purest and whitest
with which to craft pictures of angels. Hollow
parakeet ribs make wings, and fly wonderfully.
The heron growls that everything alive here is dead.
In the yard I shovel shih tzu into the great fire
and watch them turn bright and brittle and am jealous.

21 Mar 07

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Should I line break this bad boy? If so, any suggestions?
 — Doulos

scratch that, made the breaks.
 — Doulos

This bad boy needs some breakage and rephrasing in some places too, I'm thinkin'.  
"goose ash pile"(and the rest)  reads difficult, maybe
"into last week's ash pile when geese challenged a building's soundness", or you could keep it the way it is with a little punc and line breaks if you don't want to rephrase your very interesting and entertaining poem.
Lastly, "am jealous" ? (you don't mean that).

I like it, but it will be better shifted around.
 — jenakajoffer

It's a start, but this can still improve greatly.
I'm sure chuckles or varun (and other wonderful line-breakers) will help you
polish this baby off.
Great story, indeed.
 — jenakajoffer

Yeah, I mean it. Look a little deeper, there's some meaning here. As for the words, would it makes sense to write it your way? It's a little less specific. What is the ash? How many geese? I wanted to make you think of a great pile of goose ash gleaned from an entire flock. Where would the other breaks go? I kind of like the lines long. It reads smoother.
 — Doulos

well that sheds some light on you as a writer, if it has deeper meaning then fine.  It's your poem, you leave it how you like it  but I don't get the deepness of it at all.
Thanks for elaborating for me though,
 — jenakajoffer

Sorry, I didn't mean to be defensive. Or to suggest that you didn't get it. Gosh. I'm a jerkhole.
 — Doulos

thanks for your comments anywho.
 — Doulos

i like the breaks, so hey, nice edit. the non-sense of the piece is grown up mother goose. nice.

then startled!

Things were wrong when teachers sent my turtle home  
holding mice he had strangled.  
“I was helping them change.”

interesting. like a dark fairy tail.

this is a good bad boy

 — ilenelush

 — Doulos

very cool idea, although i agree that some line break tweaking could possibly
add some power. the lines needn't become appreciably shorter.
as a quick example:

L6   If you look long enough, everyone is

L7   animal; my wife an easily loved heron. I

L8   whisper to my .......

here, L6 takes on more potency as a single true statement, without "animal".
L7 becomes slightly circular. I animal..... and also phonetic "an easily loved hare and I"...

if you care to do this in the manner i've suggested, i'm more than willing to help.
yer not a jerkhole, don't worry...

nifty words
 — unknown

I don't know about the "everyone is" statement. It seems kind of trite. Also, I never liked ending lines with "I". The last word in a line is always the most powerful, and I wanted to keep "animal, heron, maggots, become" all next to eachother. It fits the theme. What do you think about changing the verb "shovel" in the third stanza, since I already use it?
 — Doulos

 — unknown

Any more on this one?
 — Doulos

not to be a jerkhole,
but if you don't really want to change anything, why keep asking for more comments?
Anyway, I wanted to ask, isn't shiatsu some Japanese massage?  
How does that work in this poem, especially shovelling it)?
 — jenakajoffer

I'm not going to take every comment, especially when I've thought long and hard about this poem. Each word and line is crafted carefully (and has been sent already to my poetry professor), so unless the suggestion is good, I'm not going to change it. PS: you were right about shiatsu, it's a typo. It should be shih tzu. I'll fix it.
 — Doulos

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