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damaged

Posted: Fri Aug 25, 2006 10:17 am
by Catherine Edmunds
damaged

he draws the back of his hand
across his eyes
and sniffs
not crying
no, he's not crying
just a touch of hay fever

eyes clearer now
fingers walk over the car's flank
past careful sandings and many repairs

there's a scratch -- a new one -- six inches, perhaps?
he examines it in microscopic detail
marvelling at multi-coloured layers of paint

(eyes sting again. paint allergy? must be)

he concentrates on the hot trickle
that creeps down his face

it helps him forget his mother's dry curses
calling on dead men to disembowel her children
it helps him forget
the smell on her breath on her clothes in her hair
the sticky wet cut on his temple
shaped like the edge of a bottle
of bombay sapphire gin

a fly senses blood and corruption
waltzes in zig-zags and seeks out his face
he lashes out
all the fury of seventeen years in one blow

a small dent is added to the car's wing
and the fly
departs
unharmed

a rasping sound
his foot's kicked a twelve inch monkey wrench
he picks it up, nods once to the car
then goes in search of his mother

Posted: Thu Aug 31, 2006 12:47 pm
by Louis P. Burns aka Lugh
Now, that is perfection. I love the action in this poem and the narrative style that flows superbly. I could see the central character, all his rage and tears (denied)... His intention to do damage conveyed, the teenage angst and rebellion delivered very effectively.

An awe inspiring poem without doubt...

I originally posted a response to this over on Bukowski's goatee on my 'Bold' passport but didn't notice it posted to here Delph. Sincere apologies for that.

Upon reading it again I would love to know more about how you came to write this piece? I would also say that it would be an interesting work if shot to video, quite easy too. Bit of funding from maybe the Arts Council if they were up for it. Settings: city, quiet back street, sunny day, row of cars, teenager in scruffy denims and oversized t-shirt with maybe a Grunge hairstyle. Back beat of low but tense drum and bass (D&B) with voiceover of poem. I can hear it being read slowly (either female or male voice - possibly American or English) and interwoven with the D&B.

These are just images that spring to my mind as a filmaker / producer and I don't mean to intrude in any way on the piece as it is.

Ambient and atmospheric work Delph.

Well played mate 8)

Posted: Thu Aug 31, 2006 5:15 pm
by Catherine Edmunds
Thanks Lugh. How I came to write this poem is simple; it was part of a workshop exercise in poetic truth. A five line verse was provided that gave the bare bones of the story in the most boring way possible. (I won't quote them, because of possible copyright issues.) The task was then to re-write them bearing in mind these three poetic principles: honesty, 'show don't tell', and 'the devil is in the detail'.

Yes, this would work well as a video. You've got some great ideas there, Lugh.