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The circular golden entrance gong strikes twice
ever so mute,
followed by visions of a musical Cimarron.

The majestic oriental palace of old lives again.
Beat on, glad drum,
the fair princess has come from her astral beach.

Royalty such as this world will never know
transcends the room
which eagerly awaits the presence of a Great One.

Her beloved followers fall prostrate before her
wondrous splendor,
but will not recall her in awe in their next life.

Clashing again so softly with glorious beauty,
fragrant incense
seeps into and drugs the adoring minds.

But the fate-ship lies anchored in the still bay.
Beat not, sad drum,
for all must fade when the wax melts down.

Copyright 1995 James D. Young


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Comments

The following comments are for "OPIUM OF THE ORIENT"
by JamesYoung

arghhh
Gotta confess I got hung up on details before I got past the first tercet. I almost got 'ever so mute' gongs that had been struck... twice. But then .. I was mesmerized by 'Cimarron' and being the person I am I went off to find out what it was.

It's a river that flows from New Mexico - across Oklahoma and into Arkansas. hmmm .. so maybe there's more info if I do a google search ... too much USA info to wade through .. no eastern influences. Then I looked at .. cimmaron ... found a pretty ash tree .. but .. now I've just got to wait and find out.

( Posted by: Pen [Member] On: February 18, 2011 )

Cimarron
Also a movie...twice. :)

( Posted by: JamesYoung [Member] On: February 19, 2011 )

Oriental opiate
James,

very nice flow and pace in this. It has a good combination of the Royalty with the Peasantry, and draws an ancient picture in my mind.

Two little spots that stuck out to me:

The word "prostrate"...a very good word but does not seem to describe how the subjects might be throwing themselves to the feet of the precious one, or Great One. It seems too soft a word and I think something more forceful (fall flat) would be a stronger image.

"But the fate-ship lies anchored..." kind of trips me a little. For me, the word "lies" is often difficult to use because it describes untruth more than resting motionless. Maybe "the Fated ship rests, anchored..." or something like that would present a more cinematic image.

Otherwise, very nicely written, and enjoyable to read.

BW

( Posted by: BWOz [Member] On: February 19, 2011 )

Fell on collective butts
Brian: thanks for your astute insights. Agree 100% with "fate-ship rests, anchored..." but unsure about "prostrate." Felt it was closer to adoration-like than "fall on their collective asses." Will give it some additional (and serious) thought before revising.

Lucie: Did not mean to ignore your comments. Thank you for them. This poem was written at a time when I was doing relatively no creative writing, so it's difficult for me to zero in on my own mindset then. Perhaps it was merely a concept or leftover images from earlier and more prolific days. - Jim

( Posted by: JamesYoung [Member] On: February 19, 2011 )





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