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AC Benus

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Everything posted by AC Benus

  1. . Poem No. 41 Poem: In lovely sorrow I sink again, to the depths of a familiar deep, as fingers in aging glove descend, to borrow themselves a state complete. Around my decline the white shirts land, in lines as pure as bleach can render, while I ask if any understand, the soundless graft of my encover. Here where I stand is murky and loud, with other laughter swirling the air, as we the ever-damned of the crowd, must seek our diversion into a pair. For he who plummets to this depth of mine, Sorrow save him from the joy he’ll find. Postlude: Oh, to have heart and voice the same; Skill enough to bleed talent un-lame. Poem No. 42 To view a sorrow as a fact, is a precarious point to make; It negates room to enact a retreat from its mistake. Poem No. 43 I turn the pages and admire the loves long dead. I put on their eyes to admire the loves they longed. And with every word I hear them speak of you, and give form to my wont of expression. Poem No. 44 I’m sorry I cannot tame it And ever here retain it _
  2. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Parker. These later Brian poems were ambitious, and I'm sure at the time I had no idea if they were working. It's great feedback to hear that they touch people. As for beauty, I'll always gladly accept that compliment Thank you one again!
  3. Thank you, Mike. It's always enough for me to know you have read and gained something from poetry I post. Thank you, as always
  4. Awww, thank you, Tim! I love the idea of a poem to read with one's eyes closed. These larger-scale poems for Brian were me as a young poet "coming into my own," at least in my own mind. It seemed like all the years of study and practice leading up to them were coming to fruition; I was rooting my own poetic voice and finding freedom of expression. I think of these as turning points. Thank you once again!
  5. Thank you, Def. This is a tense poem, and part of that comes from the sheer not-knowing what is going on. I think the poet tries to bring that over to the reader, to share it, in a way with the soldiers in a do or die situation. Thanks again for reading and commenting. I always appreciate your take on things
  6. Thank, Mike. Again you summarize the poem perfectly. With the final three lines, I initially wondered if there were sent to the mud because soldiers behind them were standing to fire. But now I seem to see the soldiers coming through the stubble in clusters as being from the enemy position. I think the ambiguity is on purpose, as if Hans is wanting to instill this feeling of confusion and dread directly into the reader. Thanks again for reading and commenting. You're efforts are highly appreciated
  7. Thank you, Parker. Compared to similar poems coming earlier in the series, this one stays focused on the scene. All the feelings you mentioned are "left out" of explicit commenting on in the poem. There seems to be no room, as the action is fast paced. In this regard, the poem is remarkable. I've come to believe the ambiguity of the ending is on purpose. It leaves the reader abruptly, with the feeling of confusion the soldiers themselves must have been experience in this scene. There seems to be some highly subtle poetry craft going on here. Thank you, as always, for sharing your thoughts with us. Muah
  8. Yes, he seems to leave any sense of emotional impact out. For artistic reasons, it could be that's he recreating in the reader a "no time to react" moment in life. If so, it works really well, as the meaning of the last three lines can be understood as unfolding in a couple of different ways. Thank you, Tim, for reading and commenting. I know these are not easy to read sometimes
  9. Thank you, Lyssa. I just read the entire quote yesterday -- the one he wrote in a letter about poets creating the new world (thanks to you typing up the book's Introduction for me ). It is an amazing passage, and confirms what I glean from the poems: Hans was a visionary and foresaw the outcome of the conflict would be a democratic Germany. It's another element to the tragedy that he did not live long enough to see the Wiemar Republic come about. This poem is one of the few in the collection that can be understood as entirely "Modern," that is as in the Modern Art Movement where the emotions of the artist are not presented. Hans shows us the scene and leaves any emotional response entirely up to the sympathies of the reader. Already as an artist he was moving towards artistic trends that only began to be followed after the war. More evidence of an amazingly creative mind. Thanks again for all of your support and encouragement
  10. Thank you for reading and commenting, Mike. As you know, I'm debating changing "white sheets" (which is a literal translation from the poem) to "white flags," so there is no question about what is happening in the scene. I'm still not sure about it... I think you summarize the poem perfectly, or at least as perfectly as I can understand the original. There are always questions if I could have said things better, but reading this kind of synopsis of what you "see" from the words helps me know I am reaching my goals. Thanks again for all your great support. Muah
  11. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts, Parker. Many readers -- including me -- are struck by the bullets hungering for their bloody bites. It's almost a stopping line in the poem, but it seems to set up a transition to the "misfire" of the surrendering by the men inside of the trench. I find it a fascinating poem. Thanks again for all of your support. I appreciate it a great deal
  12. We have discussed how Hans can conjure language that serves more than one purpose. Many of his pieces have a surface appearance (in terms of message) that "can pass" as something expected (like standard patriotism in some of the war sonnets), but the words themselves carry an initiated meaning just below the surface. He's one of the most subtle poets of this craft I have encountered, and I find myself seeking these second meanings in his work. Your comments here are helpful; maybe I should try again with this poem to achieve that nursery rhyme quality in the sounds and rhythms too. That would be a difficult task though....
  13. Ha-ha, Tim, I won't tire of hearing you say I'm wonderful as long as you don't tire of me being wonderful But seriously, your comment about war being senseless, in the literal sense, makes me think how soldiers will say about a dangerous situations: "Training kicked in and we were okay." Yes, it matters that the muscles remember what to do when the brain is otherwise in shock. It seems to be only later (PTSD...) that the sights seen, and actions committed, catch up to the person. That is a horrible aspect of war too, for the survivors. Thank you again for all your support, for reading and commenting. You're the best
  14. I agree that the line Wie Schwäne still, verzauberter Gestalt ("Like silent swans, enchanting figures") brings a nursery rhyme character to the scene. Perhaps he's making the horrible analogy that the license of war to kill is something like "child's play," especially the longer the conflict drags out. It's horrible but brilliant. This time though the men in the trench won't be shot like fish in a barrel. Thank you once more, Lyssa, for your reading, comments and assistance. It means a lot to me
  15. This was charming and perfectly scaled, Cole. You're one of GA's most gifted writers, and it shows in how you crafted this little description: "Football was an exercise in futility. His feet tangled up and he’d plummet to the ground, the oval pigskin squirting from his fingers." As one who'd also plummet to the ground, this brought up both the sight of grass rushing up to my face, and a horribly inadequate feeling of shame with it. You write wonderfully
  16. Very intriguing and well written! Now you have a problem: you've set up such a brilliant concept for a story, your readers will be wanting more, much more I too am looking forward to the next installment (hint, hint). Great job
  17. AC Benus

    Chapter 1

    Great beginning! You leave us wanting to know what's upset the main character so much, and then what the heck Ass' Ash's deal is.... This kinda has the feel of the start of a Marvel movie to me. That's intriguing. Great job
  18. @Parker OwensA very intriguing start to something longer. I kept expecting the fossils to show some horrible, extinct species that exterminated itself on the Earth eons ago. Maybe one of the core samples they pulled up said in an ancient form of writing: "Trump begins melting Greenland for beachfront condos...."
  19. . 9. Wir haben die Gewehre in den Händen Und stolpern langsam durch die schwere Nacht. Wir hören flüstern und wenn Astwerk kracht, Und keiner weiß, wo unsre Reihen enden. Da kommt vom Feind, der fern verborgen steht, Ein Stoß von Licht ins Dunkel. Und wie Glas Sind plötzlich dünner Wald und hohes Gras Von einem triefend weißen Glanz durchweht. Und wir – vereinsamt unterm feuchten Laub, Weglos hintastend und in starrem Lauschen Auf jeden Schuß, der in die Täler hallt – Sehn die Kolonnen, schattenhaft geballt, Augenblickskurz über die Stoppeln rauschen. Da wirft uns ein Befehl jäh in den Staub. --- 9. We have rifles set and lifted in our hands As we stumble slowly through the dense night. We hear branches crack, and then nobody knows How far our lines extend from where we are. Now from the enemy, who's hidden up front, A jolt of light breaks the gloom. And like glass, The sparse forest and tall grasses appear as Those blasted through by a dripping white sheen. And we – alone under the damp foliage, Grope directionless, straining to pick up Every stray shot echoing in the valley – See the Columns, as shadowy clusters, Surging over the stubble for a moment. Then sudden orders hurl us in the mud. --- _
  20. AC Benus


    I'll have my clutch of calla lilies and fainting couch in ready as I proceed. The Vapors won't stop me! Looking forward to seeing what you've cooked up for us
  21. AC Benus


    I'm glad you tackled this emotional subject. In terms of accepting Gay sons and daughters, I do think there is a sure and steady change moving across the country. I hope someday your home will welcome you back for a lemonade and chat on the porch. Muah
  22. Thank you, Lyssa. I do love it when you say I have gotten things right. Your equating the noise of the moving Company to a death rattle is sheer poetry in its own right As always, thank you for your support and praise. It means a lot to me
  23. Thank you, Parker. I, too, think this poem is a remarkable one. The lovely, almost Romantic era, handling of the landscape impressions is masterful. This beautiful "melody In which the fullness of life may rest" is not modified until the concluding lines, almost the concluding words. The bucolic postcard suddenly has an army marching through it...it's upsetting. Thank you once more for your sharing of thoughts. I dearly appreciate it
  24. Thank you, Mike. The original first line contains the word zärtlich (tenderly; gently), but due to line length I omitted the qualifier. Your comments here make me reevaluate my first line in translation.... Perhaps I should try again to get a 'gentle' in there. I will have to think about it, but your feedback is invaluable, so thank you very much for sharing it. As for Hans' poetry being rich and savory, I couldn't agree more with you! Muah
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