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One poem to the tune of another 10

Monday, 9 August 2010 14:14:12

Monday, 9 August 2010 14:14:12
Just added 'tide' to the last word. The rhyme is still there but slightly hidden, which I like.  So, it's done.  I'll be writing over the rest of the summer but not here. Back early next term.

It was right for him there
All alone
By the stove, shifting his chair
On the stone

Floor closer to the fire
Of fish
Which he banks higher
With rich

Tobacco kept with crabs
In a pail
While a pincer grabs
At the tail

Of the moon on the wall
And the red
Bait-hungry lobster crawls
lured, led

To the whisky soaked trap
Now doomed
To peer through the cuckoo gap
Each moontide.


One poem to the tune of another 9

Friday, 6 August 2010 15:28:00

Friday, 6 August 2010 15:28:00
This, having hacked it back and forward is the shape of the last three verses but I don't like 'moon' at the end. 

 tobacco kept with crabs
in a pail
While a pincer grabs
At the tail

Of the moon on the wall
And the red
Bait-hungry lobster crawls
lured, led

To the whisky soaked trap
Now doomed
To peer through the cuckoo gap
Each moon


One poem to the tune of another 8

Monday, 2 August 2010 12:07:19

Monday, 2 August 2010 12:07:19

I know most of you are on holiday but I want to crack this one before I pause for a break. Tinkering with the last two verses:


tobacco kept with crabs
in a pail

While a pincer grabs

At the tail

 

Of the moon on the wall

And the red

Bait-hungry lobster crawls

…….

 

To the (whisky soaked?) trap

Now fated/doomed/destined

To peer out through the cuckoo gap

Each …    hour, quarter….tide….moontide?



One poem to the tune of another 7

Wednesday, 28 July 2010 15:06:45

Wednesday, 28 July 2010 15:06:45
It was right for him there
All alone
By the stove, shifting his chair
On the stone

Floor closer to the fire
Of fish
which he banks higher
with rich

tobacco kept with crabs
in a pail

...while a pincer grabs
at the tail / of the moon on the wall
and the red reluctant lobster crawls
where - to the wireless?

or to the trap, the locked pot (never boils?)
shut like a cuckoo clock / to peer out

whisky needs to be in here somewhere too



One poem to the tune of another 6

Tuesday, 27 July 2010 13:47:12

Tuesday, 27 July 2010 13:47:12
While I have been busy elsewhere, the Open Studio hasn't been out of my mind.

It was right for him there
All alone
By the stove, shifting his chair
On the stone

Floor closer to the fire
Of fish
which he banks higher
with rich

tobacco kept with crabs
in a pail

Thank goodness for run-on lines. I now can bring in the lobster with my mind's image of the waving threatening claw.  And the moon.



One poem to the tune of another 5

Monday, 19 July 2010 15:39:17

Monday, 19 July 2010 15:39:17
I'm now going to look at the same poem but in the style of 'The Hill Wife'. As I do so, I notice those features which aren't so typical of Frost. The long/short pattern of line lengths. The rhyme - and the way ignores it in the second verse. It is quite sparse in detail compared to many of Frost's poems but it reminds me of Stopping by Woods because that too avoids detail.

So here is the man from the Orkney Interior, sitting by his fire. Alone but content, it seems. (It occurs to me that there is something Orcadian about this ability - the ability to be quiet and alone and not crave noise and company.)

It was right for him there
All alone
By the stove, shifting his chair
On the stone

Floor closer to the fire
Of fish...

I realise I have gone a step further than I intended and rhymed 1 and 3 also. Should I try to maintain that or not?  If it gets in the way, I'll abandon it.


One poem to the tune of another 4

Tuesday, 13 July 2010 12:21:21

Tuesday, 13 July 2010 12:21:21

Inside the smell of dried fish. Outside
The crescent moon in the blank of night.
Inside the click of crab pincers. Outside
No-exit lobster pots, nets, traps.

Inside, the clock, the wireless, the claw. Outside
Potato rows mulched with sea-weed.
Inside, the salt sea in saucers. Outside
The rock pool, a small shivering moon.

I've added the potatoes, but set them outside rather than in the old man's ears and mulched them with seaweed - because I felt like it.   I'm going back to IHF's poem to see if I want to add a third verse. At the moment, I don't think I do.


One poem to the tune of another 3

Thursday, 8 July 2010 15:44:24

Thursday, 8 July 2010 15:44:24

That's better. Now for a fresh look and listen.


Inside the smell of dried fish. Outside

The crescent moon in the blank of night.

Inside the click of crab pincers. Outside

The sea of lobster pots…

Inside, the clock, the wireless, the claw.

Outside the salt sea


    - no I want the salt sea in those saucers:


Inside the salt sea in saucers. Outside

The rock pool, small shivering moon.


small and shivering took me a while to decide on. Rock pols are rarely still, even on a calm day. And the Orkneys are known for their winds which have blown chickens all the way to Norway.





One poem to the tune of the other 2

Thursday, 8 July 2010 15:02:03

Thursday, 8 July 2010 15:02:03
I got well and truly sidetracked and haven't given this the thought I intended.

Outside, lobsters locked in pots
Lobsters in locked pots - lost?

Indoors, the clock, the wireless, the claw.

Oh dear, I've lost the plot, the lobster plot, a bit.  I need another cup of tea, and a think.


One poem to the tune of another

Wednesday, 30 June 2010 11:14:42

Wednesday, 30 June 2010 11:14:42

I’ve been re-reading some of the poems set for AS with a home / house / interior theme and one of the questions I asked was whether any of the poems could be re-written in the style of another poem from the group. I am reminded at this point of the game in ‘I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue’ where a panellist has to sing the lyrics of one song to the tune of another.

 

Having raised the question, I’m now intrigued.  And I don’t like to set challenges which I’m not prepared to try myself…

 

So, my first attempt is to consider Finlay’s surreal poem and see if there is any way it might be ‘translated’ into MacNiece’s very spare, clipped style.

 

Indoors the smell of dried fish. Outdoors

The crescent moon in the blank of night.

Indoors the click of crab pincers. Outdoors

The sea of lobster pots…

 

Perhaps ‘inside’ and ‘outside’ would be better and keep the connection without sounding quite so much like the original.   I’d like to keep some sense of the character’s locked away feelings. The lobsters imprisoned in the lobster traps?

 

 



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