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Fargo2 for Grants Attention

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  • Johntee
    commented on 's reply
    I think what I write is well described by narrative rhyme. It's interesting to see what you can do with the subject and how different the result is.

  • grant hayes
    You are often inspired to write pieces that respond creatively to the post of another Zone-ist. With that regard, I offer a piece that responds to your work here. I may well have distorted your material beyond all recognition, but it's a more economical way of indicating some of the choices I might make when composing a poem.

    the horses
    glossed and heaving
    obedient ostled
    borne from the long haul
    slip from their tackle
    free of the jingle
    ringing the way to Fargo
    free of the plains they’d drummed
    ahead of the racing dust
    the wintered winds had cast

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  • grant hayes
    I hear you about 'passively tamed by the ostler's sure handling' - it is plainly indicative, and sort of prosy, or like a line from a bush ballad; 'passively', in particular, has a technical, formal flatness to it.

    I'm rather partial to a bit of enigma, as you've probably gathered. But that's just a matter of taste.

    'galloping the plains' is a narrative line - fine for connecting parts of a story. I mean, horses gallop, no doubt about it. For a more enigmatic effect, I'd go for a verb that is not related primarily to horses: drumming, maybe?

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  • Johntee
    Thanks Grant, I see what you mean with borne and down. The initial pace came from 5 syllable lines but interjecting "the ostler's sure handling," took it 6 which matched "unharnessed from tackle, borne down from the long haul," What I had in mind was starting out with exhaustion then flipping to the initial state of vigour at "no trace of the jingle" which is where "high stepping the plains came" from but maybe "galloping the plains" would fit better with draft horses and my concept of exhaustion isn't well matched by the strength of the words in lines 3-5. "the still wintered wind blew" I find harder since I wanted wintered wind to marry up with "steaming" in the third line. I've altered it to "the cold wintered wind blows" which at least gives two words with "o" and two with "i". I'd appreciate another read and comment and of course any time I try to improve things they automatically become less enigmatic as in "leading the horses and passively tamed by the ostler's sure handling"

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  • grant hayes
    Better? It depends what you're aiming for, Johntee. Your additions make this version less enigmatic than the last. The first eight lines set up a regular pace and rhythm that stumbles at the ninth. In that line, if you remove either borne or down, the rhythm resumes, or it does to my ear. There's a bit of stumble at high stepping in the twelfth line and the still wintered wind in the fifteenth; one can read them in such a way that the prior rhythm is sustained, but that requires application; it's not the reading that comes most readily. If you're not too concerned to make the piece tightly rhythmic, then these observations are moot.
    Last edited by grant hayes; 08-20-2018, 02:46 AM.

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  • Johntee
    started a topic Fargo2 for Grants Attention

    Fargo2 for Grants Attention

    Wells Fargo
    Grant, I gave this a two hour rewrite over breakfast
    and separated the banking reference
    in an attempt to improve the flow.
    Is it any better?
    Staging the changes,

    leading the horses,

    stamping and steaming,

    champing and sweating,

    glossy flanks heaving,

    passively tamed by

    the ostler's sure handling,

    unharnessed from tackle,

    down from the long haul,

    no trace of the jingle

    that set out for Fargo

    galloping the plains

    and setting the pace to

    race with the dust storms

    the cold wintered wind blows.

    Remembered the days

    ere banking took over,

    the stages still rolled,

    the dollar was silver

    and robbery came

    with a six shot revolver.
    Last edited by Johntee; 08-20-2018, 08:02 AM.