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Rhythm and Rhyme Workshop

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  • kskdnj sajn (3/4/2006 11:15:00 PM) Post reply

    Herbert Nehrlich (2/27/2006 10: 03: 00 PM)

    Hunters, Gatherers and Poets:

    The verdict from our (anonymous) judge has come in, just this minute.
    In the rhyming competition:

    The bronze medal is shared by: Scarborough Gypsy, CJ Heck, DA Phinney
    (score 7)

    The silver medal is shared by: Craig Ewens, Rich Hanson
    (score 7.5)

    The gold medal is shared by: Max Reif, Raynette Eitel, John Kay

    (score 8)

    Now don't come chasing after me. I didn't even get a mention! ! ! ! !

    Best wishes and thanks to all for entering.

  • Jim Valero (12/20/2005 7:59:00 PM) Post reply | Read 1 reply

    I'd like to share a poem by Archibald MacLeish which I just love, because it expresses what I personally feel about poetry. Though there is very little rhyme, the little there is works just fine for the poet's purpose, which is what the poem itself is about. The poem is called 'Ars Poetica, ' Latin for 'The Art of Poetry.' Hope y'all dig.

    Ars Poetica

    A poem should be palpable and mute
    As a globed fruit

    As old medallions to the thumb

    Silent as the sleeve-worn stone
    Of casement ledges where the moss has grown -

    A poem should be wordless
    As the flight of birds

    A poem should be motionless in time
    As the moon climbs

    Leaving, as the moon releases
    Twig by twig the night-entangled trees,

    Leaving, as the moon behind the winter leaves,
    Memory by memory the mind -

    A poem should be motionless in time
    As the moon climbs

    A poem should be equal to:
    Not true

    For all the history of grief
    An empty doorway and a maple leaf

    For love
    The leaning grasses and two lights above the sea -

    A poem should not mean
    But be

    -Archibald MacLeish

    Replies for this message:
    • Poetry Hound (12/20/2005 8:30:00 PM) Post reply

      Yes, this is perhaps his most famous poem. See the response by Czeslaw Milosz entitled 'Ars Poetica? '

  • Ernestine Northover Rookie - 1st Stage (12/17/2005 1:01:00 PM) Post reply | Read 3 replies

    I thought this poem by William Barnes 1801 - 1886 was worth a read, I think it is rather lovely.

    A Winter Night.

    It was a chilly winter's night;
    And frost was glittering on the ground,
    And evening stars were twinkling bright;
    And from the gloomy plain around
    Came no sound,
    But where, within the wood-girt tower,
    The churchbell slowly struck the hour;
    As if that all of human birth
    Had risen to the final day,
    And soaring from the worn-out earth
    Were called in hurry and dismay
    Far away;
    And I alone of all mankind
    Were left in loneliness behind.

    Comments appreciated. Love Ernestine XXX

    Replies for this message:
    • Martha J. Eshelman-Smith (1/30/2006 11:21:00 PM) Post reply

      This is well worth sharing. I find the rhyme pattern to be unusual and interesting: ababbcc dededdff. Do you know anything about the author?

    • Herbert Nehrlich1 (1/18/2006 3:32:00 AM) Post reply

      Guess what? I will make two corrections to this poem and ask you what you think....: 5th line: came not a sound 12th line: so far away Well? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? H And Sally won't s ... more

    To read all of 3 replies click here
  • Jim Valero Rookie - 1st Stage (12/15/2005 9:36:00 AM) Post reply | Read 2 replies

    Here's another bit of satire: 'Modest Proposal Revisited.' If it is shocking, so is the ghastly ghost of hunger, poverty, & violence haunting the world today. Jonathan Swift, that Master of Satire, knew this well, & used his pen to expose the heartless exploitation, corruption, & decadence in the Ireland of his time. Sadly, three centuries ahead, the world still suffers from much the same social maladies Swift denounced.

    'A Modest Proposal Revisited'

    Several years ago, Jonathan Swift,
    that Leviathan of the Pen, propos’d,
    to strike out Famine, Poverty, & Plight,
    to take the children of the poor to roast;
    then, spiced up, well-dress’d, & tenderized,
    to serve them at the table for a bite.
    What best solution for the Brave New World
    that’s dying to be born, the Brave New World
    of globalized Commodities & Goods,
    where nothing holy is but is for sale,
    than end up Famine & increase our stock of foods—
    a brand new meat to eat after cocktail!

    Certainly the poorest nations of the world,
    which see their markets flooded with Oriental
    goods, their peasant’s hopes like trash being hurled
    into the mud canals, would take this mirthful
    chance to double, triple, & even quadruple
    their incomes as they finally are able
    to sell good, tender meat worldwide, & cater
    to the delicate, sophisticated palates
    of the Rich & Mighty with a meal that’s better
    than pork, venison, or veal. With large frigates
    going ‘cross the oceans, up & down,
    with infants’ meat for Paris, London, & New York—
    the poorest part of this poor planet would become
    a Paradise on Earth, the Greatest Boomtown
    in our Brave New Globalized & O so awesome
    Cen – tu - ry!

    Replies for this message:
    • Wayne Guy Butterfield (12/15/2005 7:28:00 PM) Post reply

      Swift's 'A Modest Proposal' certainly is a classic of satire. And as you suggest, Jim, in many ways sadly still applicable today. Thanks for a very interesting post! Best, Wayne

    • Ernestine Northover Rookie - 1st Stage (12/15/2005 3:58:00 PM) Post reply

      Now this takes some reading, Jim, I shall have to read it a few times, but having read it twice already, I'm beginning to take it in. It certainly covers a lot and explains a lot, and what one reads i ... more

  • Jim Valero Rookie - 1st Stage (12/14/2005 12:00:00 PM) Post reply | Read 3 replies

    Hello, I want to make a contribution to the 'Rhythm + Rhyme Workshop' with a satirical poem of mine. It's called 'What Was God Doing? '


    What was God doing when he first blew up
    the nought & single-handedly begot
    the aught in that terrible Big Bang?

    Was He pondering on Sin, Repentance & Redemption,
    while huge galaxies & worlds unfurl'd in cosmic radiation?
    Did He dwell on Moral Law, Sexual Continence,
    & life-long Matrimony while the choirs of angels sang?

    Did he think of Life & Death, of Misery & Pain,
    as his mighty dreadful hand stirr'd the cosmic brew?
    In what genial, timeless moment did God engineer his Hell?
    Did He watch all sinners roast in a fancy grand preview?

    Could his Infallible Reason fully fathom how insignificant
    human life would be in the scheme of Cosmic Time?
    Did He stop to think of Just & Fair as He wrote his Passion Play?
    What rating will He give it when He writes the end review?

    And when everything's been said & done,

    Will God just rewind the tape in one terrible Big Crunch?
    Will He have the Passion Play re-played as He enjoys his brunch?

    Replies for this message:
    • Karen Seyfert Rookie - 1st Stage (1/27/2006 9:43:00 AM) Post reply

      The first 3 stanzas spoke very strongly to me. I was 'talking back' to the poem as I read it. (Responses were, 'Of course not! Heaven forbid! Hell NO! ') That happens seldom for me. The last verses w ... more

    • Mary Nagy Rookie - 1st Stage (12/14/2005 8:40:00 PM) Post reply

      What a thought provoking poem Jim! Very nice. I often wonder about these things.........Why we are and What we are to God puzzles me. I hope we're judged individually and not as a ''group effort''!

    • Ernestine Northover Rookie - 1st Stage (12/14/2005 3:50:00 PM) Post reply | Read 1 reply

      Well Jim, I don't think you have left anything out in this poem. A deeply thought out write, unusual rhyming using the end of each stanza. making a deep read here. Well written, leaving one with that ... more

  • Wayne Guy Butterfield Rookie - 1st Stage (12/13/2005 12:09:00 AM) Post reply | Read 2 replies

    Hello, all. I was deeply moved by the poem Ernestine recently posted entitled, “Do Not Stand at my Grave and Weep.” The last line in particular, “I am not there I did not die, ” inspired me to write the following, with rhythm and rhyme and even a bit of free verse. The thoughts seemed especially appropriate these days, as the latest polls show most Americans now feel they were purposely misled into war.

    Nowhere To Hide

    So it was just lies
    The need to go to war
    Intentionally created
    Secretly debated
    Subtly misleading
    Endlessly repeating

    Yet somehow we fell for it
    The need to go to war
    Presidentially purported
    Congressionally supported
    Journalistically followed
    Publicly swallowed

    Lies about the reasons
    Lies about the treasons
    Lies with every breath
    Lies that led to death
    Over and over
    And over again

    Somewhere the souls of thousands
    Remember our need to go to war
    Somewhere the souls of thousands
    Cry in horror for ever more

    They see through our justifications
    Can no longer be fooled by our lies
    The charade that we wanted to free them
    Permanent bases carefully disguised

    They know the war’s real reasons
    Pivotal power from control of black gold
    Contempt for the views of others
    The value that each life holds

    And they cry out to us now in shock and awe
    To warn of the terrible price we will pay
    If we keep swallowing the lies of our leaders
    Till we join them on judgment day

    Yes, somewhere the souls of thousands
    See the truths we fail to grasp
    And they hear the rattling bones of the dead
    From the graveyards of empires past

    Wayne Guy Butterfield

    Replies for this message:
    • Ernestine Northover Rookie - 1st Stage (12/13/2005 3:58:00 PM) Post reply

      Yes, Wayne, I loved this a lot, I have put a comment on it on your poems site. As I said then the last two lines are absolutely great, and a beautiful finale to the poem. Congrats. Love Ernestine XXX

    • Mary Nagy Rookie - 1st Stage (12/13/2005 9:47:00 AM) Post reply

      Wayne, There have been many poems posted about the current war situation but none have moved me as much as this! What an incredible poem! I hope you've posted it. (If you did I missed it...sorry.) ... more

  • Ernestine Northover Rookie - 1st Stage (12/7/2005 1:22:00 PM) Post reply | Read 3 replies

    This poem is by Sir John Betjeman 1906 - 1984. He was our Poet Laureate.
    I think Mary would enjoy this one, but anyone else as well.

    Diary of a Church Mouse.

    Here among long-discarded cassocks,
    Damp stools, and half-split open hassocks,
    Here where the Vicar never looks,
    I nibble through old service books.
    Lean and alone I spend my days,
    Behind the Church of England baize.
    I share my dark forgotten room,
    With two oil lamps and half a broom.
    The cleaner never bothers me,
    So here I eat my frugal tea.
    My bread is sawdust mixed with straw,
    My jam is polish for the floor.
    Christmas and Easter may be feasts
    For congregations and for priests,
    And so may Whitsun. All the same,
    They do not fill my meagre frame.
    For me the only feast at all,
    Is Autumns Harvest Festival,
    When I can satisfy my want
    With ears of corn around the font.
    I climb the eagle's brazen head
    To burrow through a loaf of bread.
    I scramble up the pulpit stair
    And gnaw the marrows hanging there.
    It is enjoyable to taste
    These items ere they go towaste,
    But how annoying when one finds
    That other mice with pagan minds
    Come into church my food to share
    Who have no proper business there.
    Two field mice who have no desire
    To be baptized, invade the choir.
    A large and most unfriendly rat
    Comes in to see what we are at.
    He says he thinks there is no God
    And yet he's rather odd.
    This year he stole a sheaf of wheat
    (It screened our special preacher's seat) .
    And prosperous mice from fields away
    Come in to hear the organ play,
    And under cover of it's notes
    Eat through the altar's sheaf of oats.
    A Low Church mouse, who thinks that I
    Am too papistical, and High,
    Yet somehow doesn't think it wrong
    To munch through Harvest Evensong,
    While I, who starve the whole year through,
    Must share my food with rodents who
    Except at this time of the year
    Not once inside the church appear.
    Within the human world I know
    Such goings-on could not be so,
    For human being only do
    What their religion tells them to.
    They read the Bible every day,
    And always, night and morning pray,
    And just like me, the good church mouse,
    Worship each week in God's own house.
    But all the same it's strange to me
    How very full the church can be
    With people I don't see at all
    Except at Harvest Festival.

    I hope you all enjoy this read. Love Ernestine XXX

    Replies for this message:
    • Wayne Guy Butterfield Rookie - 1st Stage (12/10/2005 2:14:00 AM) Post reply

      Really fits the season, Ernestine! Thanks for sharing it. Best, Wayne

    • Mary Nagy Rookie - 1st Stage (12/8/2005 9:24:00 PM) Post reply | Read 1 reply

      You're right..........I do love it Ernestine! I had never heard of him......I'll have to look him up. Great poem. Sincerely, Mary

    To read all of 3 replies click here
  • Mary Nagy Rookie - 1st Stage (12/7/2005 11:04:00 AM) Post reply

    Did everyone hear............

    THE BOOK IS READY! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

    Just go to and search for ''Poemhunter Anthology'' It costs under $7 u.s. dollars. :)

  • Ernestine Northover Rookie - 1st Stage (12/5/2005 3:58:00 PM) Post reply | Read 2 replies

    I'm putting on here a poem that was featured in a piece on war poetry, you may well know it, but I think it's a very moving beautiful poem, It is by an anonymous writer, but was found in an envelope left for his parents, by Steven Cummins a soldier killed on active service in Northern Ireland, to be opened on the event of his death.

    Do Not Stand at my Grave and Weep

    Do not stand at my grave and weep;
    I am not there. I do not sleep.
    I am a thousand winds that blow.
    I am the diamond glints on snow.
    I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
    I am the gentle autumn rain.
    When you awaken in the morning's hush
    I am the swift uplifting rush
    Of quiet birds in circled flight.
    I am the soft stars that shine at night.
    Do not stand at my grave and cry;
    I an not there. I did not die.

    Another one which is I think a lovely poem by Christina Rossetti 1830-1894


    Remember me when I am gone away,
    Gone far away into the silent land;
    When you can no more hold me by the hand,
    Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.
    Remember me when no more day by day
    You tell me of our future that you planned;
    Only remember me; you understand
    It will be late to counsel then or pray,
    Yet if you should forget me for a while
    And afterwards remember, do not grieve;
    For if darkness and corruption leave
    A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
    Better by far you should forget and smile
    Than that you should remember and be sad.

    Any thoughts on these two poems?


    Replies for this message:
    • Wayne Guy Butterfield Rookie - 1st Stage (12/6/2005 11:12:00 PM) Post reply

      Both full of lovely thoughts and images, Ernestine. If only the last line of the first could really be true for the many who've died so tragically.... Thanks for sharing them. Best, Wayne

    • Mary Nagy Rookie - 1st Stage (12/6/2005 6:00:00 AM) Post reply

      I think they are both beautiful Ernestine! The first one especially, I guess just due to the circumstances of them finding it. What great poems to have on hand when you've lost someone. Very nice. ... more

  • Ernestine Northover Rookie - 1st Stage (12/3/2005 1:46:00 PM) Post reply | Read 2 replies

    Thanks Wayne for admitting you have bravely read all my long poems, but now, funnily enough, I find them somewhat hard to write, and have gone over to the shorter, punch line type poems. Finding new subjects can be a bit daunting, ones which one feels would be of interest to the majority of poem readers. It's writing a poem that holds the reader and stirs their imagination to say, yep that's a good one! How to be a nervous wreck in two words - WRITE POETRY! ! ! ! ! ! ! Love Ernestine XXX

    Replies for this message:
    • Wayne Guy Butterfield Rookie - 1st Stage (12/7/2005 12:11:00 AM) Post reply

      Longer poems always seem harder to me, Ernestine. But when you feel you've finally got it right, bet you'll agree..... it sorta makes you wanna..... WRITE POETRY! ! ! Best, Wayne

    • Mary Nagy Rookie - 1st Stage (12/3/2005 8:13:00 PM) Post reply | Read 1 reply

      Hey! ! How come when sally types short poems it turns into a link? ? That's cool! Does it work if you type Long poems too? ?

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