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LISTEN - A Poem

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  • queen_of_cryptic_cyphers
    LISTEN I ll tell you thousands of reasons you should listen, and ten thousand more you ll want to close your ears. They come with sad stories, bruises, and
    Message 1 of 10 , Nov 30, 2007
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      LISTEN

      I'll tell you thousands of reasons
      you should listen,
      and ten thousand more
      you'll want to close your ears.

      They come with sad stories,
      bruises,
      and mammoth tears,
      wearing the shameful way people can be
      but we don't want to know
      they can be.

      There are only words now
      to use for sutures and salve,
      to wash their old scabs
      and cleanse clotted childhoods.

      She says he did things
      when she was a three.
      She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
      and this haunts her dreams.

      I say something trite like
      "Do you know how strong you are,
      and brave?"

      Then the flooding urge to apologize
      for what I do not, but feel I owe.
      "You know I lost my mother too?"
      slips out softly,
      as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
      the child crying.

      © Gwen Ames, 2007
    • chedee
      This is not an easy poem. I doubt you meant it to be so. Yet it was wonderfully observed. I am a teacher and can say that I come across children who harbour
      Message 2 of 10 , Dec 1, 2007
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        This is not an easy poem. I doubt you meant it to be so. Yet it was wonderfully observed. I am a teacher and can say that I come across children who harbour these emotions and thoughts. It is a poem that needs and deserves to be read a few times. You have captured a deep sentiment. I can only comment on the gut feelings, beyond that I leave detailed analysis elsewhere. Thank you for posting.

        Che Dee

        http://chedee.moonfruit.com
      • wings081
        Dear Gwen Re. your third verse: Only words What a difference a few words can make to life. They can wound with such force that no salve can heal and yet
        Message 3 of 10 , Dec 1, 2007
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          Dear Gwen
          Re. your third verse:
          "Only words"
          What a difference a few words can make to life. They can wound with
          such force that no salve can heal and yet composed and spoken in a
          different tone can assuage the pain of the deepest sword thrust.

          A person will utter a caustic verbal attack and moments later be
          overcome with remorse for the harshness of their vituperation.
          If only we could learn to hold ourselves in check and count to ten
          before the attack,the cause of our angst might resolve itself and
          friendships would have a fair chance to continue.

          I'm still 'listening' Gwen, so there's hope for even me.

          As always

          Wings

          --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "queen_of_cryptic_cyphers"
          <poetry4u@...> wrote:
          >
          > LISTEN
          >
          > I'll tell you thousands of reasons
          > you should listen,
          > and ten thousand more
          > you'll want to close your ears.
          >
          > They come with sad stories,
          > bruises,
          > and mammoth tears,
          > wearing the shameful way people can be
          > but we don't want to know
          > they can be.
          >
          > There are only words now
          > to use for sutures and salve,
          > to wash their old scabs
          > and cleanse clotted childhoods.
          >
          > She says he did things
          > when she was a three.
          > She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
          > and this haunts her dreams.
          >
          > I say something trite like
          > "Do you know how strong you are,
          > and brave?"
          >
          > Then the flooding urge to apologize
          > for what I do not, but feel I owe.
          > "You know I lost my mother too?"
          > slips out softly,
          > as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
          > the child crying.
          >
          > © Gwen Ames, 2007
          >
        • David Roth
          My Queen, The depth of your gift continues to both amaze and humble me. This is a sublime combination of deeply set emotions and well crafter verse. So often
          Message 4 of 10 , Dec 1, 2007
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            My Queen,
             
            The depth of your gift continues to both amaze and humble me.  This is a sublime combination of deeply set emotions and well crafter verse.  So often subject matter as intense as is this becomes sappy and maudlin.  Your work has skipped over that step completely and moved on to the place where you touch the heart of the reader.  Bravo!
             
            Dave
             
             

            Now Available: Sometimes I Hear Voices
            ISBN: 978-1-4116-8690-8


            ----- Original Message ----
            From: queen_of_cryptic_cyphers <poetry4u@...>
            To: ticket2write@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Saturday, December 1, 2007 1:36:53 AM
            Subject: [ticket2write] LISTEN - A Poem

            LISTEN

            I'll tell you thousands of reasons
            you should listen,
            and ten thousand more
            you'll want to close your ears.

            They come with sad stories,
            bruises,
            and mammoth tears,
            wearing the shameful way people can be
            but we don't want to know
            they can be.

            There are only words now
            to use for sutures and salve,
            to wash their old scabs
            and cleanse clotted childhoods.

            She says he did things
            when she was a three.
            She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
            and this haunts her dreams.

            I say something trite like
            "Do you know how strong you are,
            and brave?"

            Then the flooding urge to apologize
            for what I do not, but feel I owe.
            "You know I lost my mother too?"
            slips out softly,
            as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
            the child crying.

            © Gwen Ames, 2007




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          • albiaicehouse
            Oh Queen! You bring us sacred messages from your sojourn. I think I speak for all that we are grateful beyond measure. Only a few gentle suggies below, in case
            Message 5 of 10 , Dec 1, 2007
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              Oh Queen!

              You bring us sacred messages from your sojourn.

              I think I speak for all that we are grateful beyond measure.

              Only a few gentle suggies below, in case they help intensify the impact.

              Rod (aka albi)

              --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "queen_of_cryptic_cyphers"
              <poetry4u@...> wrote:
              >
              > LISTEN
              >
              > I'll tell you thousands of reasons
              > you should listen,
              > and ten thousand more
              > you'll want to close your ears.
              >
              > They come with sad stories,
              > bruises,
              > and mammoth tears,(are you really saying the tears were of great
              size? "multitudinous" fits, but I'm not sure its simple or harmonious
              enough)
              > wearing the shameful way people can be
              > but we don't want to know
              > they can be.
              >
              > There are only words now (How about deleting "There are.."?)
              > to use for sutures and salve,
              > to wash their old scabs
              > and cleanse clotted childhoods.
              >
              > She says he did things
              > when she was a three.
              > She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
              > and this haunts her dreams.
              >
              > I say something trite like
              > "Do you know how strong you are,
              > and brave?"
              >
              > Then the flooding urge to apologize
              > for what I do not, but feel I owe.
              > "You know I lost my mother too?"
              > slips out softly,
              > as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
              > the child crying.
              >
              > © Gwen Ames, 2007
              >
            • Carol
              Dear Gwen, Beautiful poem, rich in detail, emotion, and texture. I agree with Albi. I think just the words tears has enough impact that using adjectives
              Message 6 of 10 , Dec 1, 2007
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                Dear Gwen,
                Beautiful poem, rich in detail, emotion, and texture. I agree with
                Albi. I think just the words "tears" has enough impact that using
                adjectives takes away from the heart of the poem.
                There is a typographical error which a spell check won't alert.
                In stanza four, line three, the poem says "when she was a three." Is
                this supposed to be "when she was three" instead?
                My only nit pick is that the last two lines seem a little awkward. The
                poem tells us that "as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy/the
                child crying." Perhaps the poem might be a little stronger if it said
                something like this "as emptying my wounds could satisfy/the crying
                child."
                Just a suggestion, of course.
                Carol


                --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "queen_of_cryptic_cyphers"
                <poetry4u@...> wrote:
                >
                > LISTEN
                >
                > I'll tell you thousands of reasons
                > you should listen,
                > and ten thousand more
                > you'll want to close your ears.
                >
                > They come with sad stories,
                > bruises,
                > and mammoth tears,
                > wearing the shameful way people can be
                > but we don't want to know
                > they can be.
                >
                > There are only words now
                > to use for sutures and salve,
                > to wash their old scabs
                > and cleanse clotted childhoods.
                >
                > She says he did things
                > when she was a three.
                > She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
                > and this haunts her dreams.
                >
                > I say something trite like
                > "Do you know how strong you are,
                > and brave?"
                >
                > Then the flooding urge to apologize
                > for what I do not, but feel I owe.
                > "You know I lost my mother too?"
                > slips out softly,
                > as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
                > the child crying.
                >
                > © Gwen Ames, 2007
                >
              • queen_of_cryptic_cyphers
                You all, Thank you all for your kind words and efforts. I missed the group so much. I am so glad the poem touched your hearts in some way. I am truly an
                Message 7 of 10 , Dec 1, 2007
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                  You'all,

                  Thank you all for your kind words and efforts. I missed the group so
                  much. I am so glad the poem touched your hearts in some way. I am
                  truly an optomist when it comes to the human spirit's capacity to
                  heal, but I truly have the utmost respect for these children also.

                  Chedee...Glad you appreciated this poem. It was good to hear from you.

                  Wings...Keep on reading sir. The world would not be the same without
                  you.

                  Albi...Most of the time, multi-truamatized children cannot comprehend
                  the horribleness of their experiences and so have trouble doing the
                  grieving. The goal becomes taking them them to that place where they
                  can understand and feel. In doing this, the tears typically come
                  slowly accumulate into the largest and slowest droplets imaginable.
                  So they are not multidinous really. I think 'mammoth' fits in
                  connotation and symbolism.

                  Carol...Glad to hear from you girl. On that ending let me say that I
                  intend it as written. The 'if' totally changes the meaning. Sometimes
                  people are at such a loss of words that they say something
                  unintentionally clumsy. They mean well, but perhaps don't say the
                  best thing (as if exchanging losses cancels each other out). That is
                  what the poem was trying to convey.

                  Dave...Thanks for the kudos guy. I am glad you felt the sentiment was
                  just right. That is the most diffucult to balance in social poetry (I
                  feel).

                  Whew! I can take my shoes off and have a glass of wine again with old
                  friends. It's good to be home.

                  Wings, where's the firewood and matches?

                  Hugs,
                  Gwen

                  > > LISTEN
                  > >
                  > > I'll tell you thousands of reasons
                  > > you should listen,
                  > > and ten thousand more
                  > > you'll want to close your ears.
                  > >
                  > > They come with sad stories,
                  > > bruises,
                  > > and mammoth tears,
                  > > wearing the shameful way people can be
                  > > but we don't want to know
                  > > they can be.
                  > >
                  > > There are only words now
                  > > to use for sutures and salve,
                  > > to wash their old scabs
                  > > and cleanse clotted childhoods.
                  > >
                  > > She says he did things
                  > > when she was a three.
                  > > She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
                  > > and this haunts her dreams.
                  > >
                  > > I say something trite like
                  > > "Do you know how strong you are,
                  > > and brave?"
                  > >
                  > > Then the flooding urge to apologize
                  > > for what I do not, but feel I owe.
                  > > "You know I lost my mother too?"
                  > > slips out softly,
                  > > as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
                  > > the child crying.
                  > >
                  > > © Gwen Ames, 2007
                  > >
                  >
                • Sleepyscribbler
                  Very powerful ending: I liked this one a lot. Sleepy ... From: ticket2write@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ticket2write@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
                  Message 8 of 10 , Dec 4, 2007
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                    Message
                    Very powerful ending: I liked this one a lot.
                     
                    Sleepy
                     
                     
                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: ticket2write@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ticket2write@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of queen_of_cryptic_cyphers
                    Sent: 01 December 2007 06:37
                    To: ticket2write@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: [ticket2write] LISTEN - A Poem

                    LISTEN

                    I'll tell you thousands of reasons
                    you should listen,
                    and ten thousand more
                    you'll want to close your ears.

                    They come with sad stories,
                    bruises,
                    and mammoth tears,
                    wearing the shameful way people can be
                    but we don't want to know
                    they can be.

                    There are only words now
                    to use for sutures and salve,
                    to wash their old scabs
                    and cleanse clotted childhoods.

                    She says he did things
                    when she was a three.
                    She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
                    and this haunts her dreams.

                    I say something trite like
                    "Do you know how strong you are,
                    and brave?"

                    Then the flooding urge to apologize
                    for what I do not, but feel I owe.
                    "You know I lost my mother too?"
                    slips out softly,
                    as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
                    the child crying.

                    © Gwen Ames, 2007

                  • battlingnelson
                    This is rather brilliant. It s mildly helpless. It captures the idea of seeing a problem one can t quite touch and can t solve. My suggestions would be:
                    Message 9 of 10 , Dec 6, 2007
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                      This is rather brilliant. It's mildly helpless. It captures the idea
                      of seeing a problem one can't quite touch and can't solve.

                      My suggestions would be:

                      Fourth stanza, second line: "a three" > "three"
                      Sixth stanza, fifth line: "as if my emptying" > "as if emptying"


                      --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "queen_of_cryptic_cyphers"
                      <poetry4u@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > LISTEN
                      >
                      > I'll tell you thousands of reasons
                      > you should listen,
                      > and ten thousand more
                      > you'll want to close your ears.
                      >
                      > They come with sad stories,
                      > bruises,
                      > and mammoth tears,
                      > wearing the shameful way people can be
                      > but we don't want to know
                      > they can be.
                      >
                      > There are only words now
                      > to use for sutures and salve,
                      > to wash their old scabs
                      > and cleanse clotted childhoods.
                      >
                      > She says he did things
                      > when she was a three.
                      > She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
                      > and this haunts her dreams.
                      >
                      > I say something trite like
                      > "Do you know how strong you are,
                      > and brave?"
                      >
                      > Then the flooding urge to apologize
                      > for what I do not, but feel I owe.
                      > "You know I lost my mother too?"
                      > slips out softly,
                      > as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
                      > the child crying.
                      >
                      > © Gwen Ames, 2007
                      >
                    • queen_of_cryptic_cyphers
                      Nelson, Thanks so much for your time. Yes, those things you noticed were slips of the too quick pen. LOL I am glad you appreciated this one. Gwen ... idea
                      Message 10 of 10 , Dec 7, 2007
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                        Nelson,

                        Thanks so much for your time. Yes, those things you noticed were
                        slips of the too quick pen. LOL

                        I am glad you appreciated this one.

                        Gwen


                        --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, battlingnelson <no_reply@...>
                        wrote:
                        >
                        > This is rather brilliant. It's mildly helpless. It captures the
                        idea
                        > of seeing a problem one can't quite touch and can't solve.
                        >
                        > My suggestions would be:
                        >
                        > Fourth stanza, second line: "a three" > "three"
                        > Sixth stanza, fifth line: "as if my emptying" > "as if emptying"
                        >
                        >
                        > --- In ticket2write@yahoogroups.com, "queen_of_cryptic_cyphers"
                        > <poetry4u@> wrote:
                        > >
                        > > LISTEN
                        > >
                        > > I'll tell you thousands of reasons
                        > > you should listen,
                        > > and ten thousand more
                        > > you'll want to close your ears.
                        > >
                        > > They come with sad stories,
                        > > bruises,
                        > > and mammoth tears,
                        > > wearing the shameful way people can be
                        > > but we don't want to know
                        > > they can be.
                        > >
                        > > There are only words now
                        > > to use for sutures and salve,
                        > > to wash their old scabs
                        > > and cleanse clotted childhoods.
                        > >
                        > > She says he did things
                        > > when she was a three.
                        > > She says he sent her mother up to the sky,
                        > > and this haunts her dreams.
                        > >
                        > > I say something trite like
                        > > "Do you know how strong you are,
                        > > and brave?"
                        > >
                        > > Then the flooding urge to apologize
                        > > for what I do not, but feel I owe.
                        > > "You know I lost my mother too?"
                        > > slips out softly,
                        > > as if my emptying my wounds could satisfy
                        > > the child crying.
                        > >
                        > > © Gwen Ames, 2007
                        > >
                        >
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