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Somehow, weíve washed up together
lapped by music, licked by liquor
sprawled on the tideline
of one too many
breathless blue-light bars.

All night Iíve swum
against the tug
of your sultry smug flirtation
with coral smiles and canyoned breasts
on waitresses far prettier than I.
Yet now youíre all insistent charm
and wanton hands
demanding their reward
while Iím incurious and tuneless,
toying with desireís minor chord.

But itís too late, too wearisome
to go against the vein.
Our ignorance of mutual rules
too pale a reason
not to play the game.

Hours later,
waking hurting,
something in your shifting sleep has changed.

Youíre tender, tousled, childlike now -
all scattered limbs and cotton-crumpled skin.
I canít forgive this blithe embrace
for last nightís absent eyes.
their idle blindness
to the absences
reflected back in mine.)

Youíre morning now, clean clothes and coffee
Iím hungover still, stale-tongued and stained.
Too shy to talk to strangers,
too uncertain of our past to start again.

Donít call me: let me leave you here
sleeping in the flotsam
of our low tideís high-time change.
While I make one more trustless truce
with one more dark-eyed day,
taking my uneasiness and pocketing the blame.
Buying last nightís one way ticket
for the morning train.

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The following comments are for "Hours Later"
by MobiusSoul

Mourning disexplanation
Caitlin- Agree with Lucie. Liked: "You're morning now/Explanation"...but found next line a bit weaker..having also seen this ('mourning')used so many times...

Having said that, found it an entertaining read..

.."Engineer blowed his whistle/Hard and long/ Couldn't stop that train/ Had to let it roll on..."...


( Posted by: Bobby7L [Member] On: December 18, 2005 )

i absolutely loved this, and i hate everything everywhere, especially in the poetry section. there are a few tacky word choices (blithe comes to mind), but overall i think this is a keeper. hope yer holidaze are going swell.


( Posted by: strangedaze [Member] On: December 19, 2005 )

S/Daze, Lucie, B7L - many hours later...
Strangedaze... muchly thanks - rather unexpected that this bit of shoegazing spoke to you, but kudos from he-who-hates-everything is surely worth something? (And the same to you, though my holidaze ain't nowhere close yet, I'm still trying to cram 10days' work into 24 pre-airport hours - your comment was the nicest thing in my day!)

Bobby, Lucie... maybe you're right - the morning couplet wasn't 'old' to me (guess I read the wrong poems?), but it was a bit facile, all the same. The poem was indeed very much scored for 'desire's minor chord': Hazelfaern gave me the idea for this, a sort of oblique rewrite of 'Clean Sheets' - and a belated apology, perhaps, for the lack of forgiveness that Lucie picked up on. Bobby, the train rolled on, as it will. I got a poem or two in part-exchange...

( Posted by: MobiusSoul [Member] On: December 19, 2005 )

hi MS--

a few things. overall, I like it very much. appreciate the depth of thought and feeling and the places they overlap. finely crafted.

*crumpled skin* kind of turned my stomach. can't say why, exactly. reminds me of a danish, maybe?

*something indefinable has changed.*
mmm... something a bit talk-y, not poem-y, here. I think it's the word "indefinable." seems like a lot of syllables. can you get your meaning across in a tighter way?

*I agree with Lucie that morning/mourning is a bit tired.

*Love these two lines:

While I make one more trustless truce
with one more dark-eyed day

as well as the whole first stanza, how you set it up. very wonderful work. I like. prob'ly there's more feedback, but I'm kinda tired and kinda sick... thanks for your comment on watersong; I appreciate it. ~a

( Posted by: ark [Member] On: December 19, 2005 )

M-Soul's laundered sheets
Caitlin- Did sense presence of: "Clean Sheets." Took as another ride/episode...Glad you clarified.



( Posted by: Bobby7L [Member] On: December 19, 2005 )

Robin, B7L, Ark - Well-washed hours
RobinBird - thanks, always, for rating :)... and Bobby - what, you think my life is like this all the time?!

Ark... really appreciate your interesting thoughts (esp. in time of sickliness!) I'll never again see cotton-creased skin without thinking bizarrely of pastries now! I think I wimped out with 'indefinable': the erratic upswings of personality disorders are tough things to render into poetry. Early on, I sliced out a lot of rather clumsy imagery about darkened/shifting stage sets... but I will rework the line - it could do with something more incisive.

( Posted by: MobiusSoul [Member] On: December 21, 2005 )

Bah I'm Dense
You know, I was thinking this poem felt awfully familiar. Once I'd read your comment and scrolled back through to re-read I realized, oh, jumping jehosephacricket, not only should I have recognized this as a rewrite, but it's there in the opening stanza... clean sheets. Color me dense.

Your sense of alliteration, as usual, is impeccable -- love the rollicking consonant crunch. Yet you've got some phrases which seem fuzzy, undedited.

Are the bars breathless or airless? "struggled against your flow/ of... flirtation...with...smiles...on waitresses" is a little wordy for all the connecting bits. Would it help, do you think, if 'flow of' were changed to 'flowing'? Are his eyes blind with idleness or convenience?

I like this poem yet I find myself wondering what it would look like if narrated from his perspective?

( Posted by: hazelfaern [Member] On: December 23, 2005 )


This is why I consider myself too young to drink. Beautifully written, perfectly captures the nut so well wrapped in the last two lines.

I think there's some kind of soul-mixing that goes on in sex; maybe that explains this morning-after emptiness: some souls are not worth the breath.

Good work, Caitlin.

( Posted by: johnlibertus [Member] On: March 19, 2006 )

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