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Poem: 'The Steel Works.'

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No! this is not my contribution to the monthly comp, though I’m working on that and I’m going to call it “Trapped” unique Eh!

 

Lets call this an interim poem.

 

Poem: The Steel Works.

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I like that coyleys. :thumbsup:

 

I had a notion of writing something about this month's Theme of "Trapped". Having read your contribution on this thread, I think I can make two contributions on the same theme this month, both of which are totally unrelated.

 

Thank you. :)

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Hi Coyleys,

 

I liked it. You are certainly breaking new ground.

 

I once worked in the steel industry in Sheffield. Most of the poetry I saw there was written on walls and definitely not repeatable.

 

Regards

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I enjoyed this poem, though it was marred by one word at the ending -

"The gift of poverty, our legacy and fate"

 

Poverty is not a gift. It is a curse.

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I enjoyed this poem, though it was marred by one word at the ending -

"The gift of poverty, our legacy and fate"

 

Poverty is not a gift. It is a curse.

 

Glad you liked it.

( Poverty is not a gift. It is a curse)

I totally agree Red.

I felt the need to inject a bit of sarcasm.

------

Thinking about it I suppose I could have put it in italics, to emphasise the point. Yes?

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Glad you liked it.

( Poverty is not a gift. It is a curse)

I totally agree Red.

I felt the need to inject a bit of sarcasm.

 

Goodness me! I didn't realise that we were both around on SF in the wee small hours.

 

I like to read up on the Writing Group at this time of night, though I've now taken to posting my comments on the various threads.... as you've noticed! :thumbsup:

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Goodness me! I didn't realise that we were both around on SF in the wee small hours.

 

I like to read up on the Writing Group at this time of night, though I've now taken to posting my comments on the various threads.... as you've noticed! :thumbsup:

 

It’s the only time I get peace and quiet and can concentrate.

-------

From the wife and daughter, I mean.

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It’s the only time I get peace and quiet and can concentrate.

-------

From the wife and daughter, I mean.

 

I also find I too can concentrate at this time of the night.

 

Even at this late hour, I've just finished writing a report, sending several emails, and have just received an incoming email from a fellow councillor! Inbetween, I dip into SF, and especially the Writing Group, for a bit of relaxation.

 

Occasionally, I get an idea for a story, and also start writing furiously. I'm still waiting for some inspiration on the theme of 'Trapped' though! :rolleyes:

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Hi Mick,

 

You’re really getting into this poetry lark now!

 

One of the things you could do to improve the rhythm is to eliminate some surplus words, take the first stanza:

 

Our school days are gone, we surrender our youth

Our fantasies are shattered, we discover the truth

The only way forward, we arewe’re led to believe

Too young in our minds, too young to conceive

 

These four line stanzas have a rhythmic quality of their own, primarily because you are rhyming the final words of the lines (ie : youth / truth, believe / conceive) – you have to be very careful that the tail doesn’t wag the dog, by this I mean you shouldn’t attempt the rhyme at all costs, particularly if it derails the rhythm or takes the reader away from the point you are trying to make.

 

For instance the second stanza:

 

The factories are calling, excitement to our mind

Epoch of an era to which we are blind

Delusions of grandeur flow through our brain

BorderlineA lifetime of slavery, we’re are soon to attain.

 

Epoch of an era? Sounds a bit clunky, remember these are the words of poor steelworker – would he really say this? Maybe substitute something like “The start of our hell to which we are blind”

 

Third stanza:

 

Thunder of hammers that beat steel to shape

The heat of the furnace, the sweat down our nape

A twelve hour shift, for a pittance of pay

No time for the family, no time to play.

 

Excellent imagery! however, you could lose the comma in the third line.

The fourth line needs a longer pause to add gravitas, you could substitute the comma with a full stop (or a hyphen) or even rework the line slightly (“No time for the family. None left for play”)

 

The fourth stanza is a funny one: It’s in the wrong place! Whilst it has some merit building up the background information I would either bump it up to stanza 2 or consider deleting entirely as it takes the reader out of the steelworks and away from the main thrust of the poem.

 

In the final stanza “the gift of poverty” line doesn’t sound quite right, I understand your point about injecting some sarcasm at this point - it may have worked if there were similar undertones throughout the work.

 

So what’s the final point you are trying to make? Does the final stanza convey this?

 

And when work is over, we stagger away

And crawl to our beds, until the next day

But try as we may, we can not escape

The gift of poverty, our legacy and fate.

 

How about something that echoes the slavery theme in the original stanza 2 instead:

 

And when work is over, we stagger back home

And crawl to our beds with poor aching bones

From cradle to grave, a slave that is cheap.

A broken life wasted upon the scrapheap.

 

 

And… you may disagree with this bit. The hammers & furnace imagery in stanza 3 makes it very clear you are talking about a steelworks, does the title of the poem have to be “The steelworks”?

 

If you call it “The Scrapheap” the reader will hit the final word and think “Ah Ah! So that’s why he called it that! – you set up a promise and an answer in the title and the final word – they’re a bit like bookends but its an effective technique. (BTW, William Wordsworth used it in “Daffodils” so that’s good enough for me :) )

 

Poetry is a lot harder than it looks, kudos to you for having a go & I hope you find this critique useful or at least unintentionally amusing as I haven’t a clue what I’m on about! :D

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Thanks for that Mantas, I really appreciate it.

Your points are all sound and have been logged in the old memory bank. I will be doing some editing later.

As for the last stanza, your alternative suggestion is great; however it’s yours, so I can’t use it “such a pity”

Thanks again, much, much, appreciated.:thumbsup:

I’ll not give my day job up just yet.:hihi:

-----------------------

Hopefully my next attempt will be better as I have just discovered what Metre and stresses are.

God! I wish I had not dosed off the last 4 years at school.

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Hi everyone,

 

I'm a brass band composer, and during my time at the University of Salford I wrote a composition based on the cotton mills of Lancashire (Gods country). As part of the composition I used imagery from the Lowry as well as working with a poet who wrote a poem and recorded his narration of it (in a strong Lancashire accent)....

 

I now plan on adding additional pieces to create 3 or more works; The Cotton Mill Worker, a steel based work, ship building and possibly others. I was wondering if the author of this poem would be interested in working with me to create a short work similar to what I did with the Cotton Mill piece. I can't offer any financial aid (except if the piece is published with the poem connected).

 

Thanks for any response!

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