This Poem was Submitted By: Rachel F. Spinoza On Date: 2003-08-28 11:05:36 . . . Click Here To Mail this Poem to a Friend!

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Waiting in the Cradle (revised)

Amanda, tender in her skin Extends a leg, and I suppose The tiny dimple in her knee As apt to change the universe As Cleopatra’s nose

Copyright © August 2003 Rachel F. Spinoza

Additional Notes:
Thanks, Sandra, I couldn't get rid of as many as half the words, but I think that what I did manage to cull helps the poem. Great suggestion.

This Poem was Critiqued By: Thomas H. Smihula On Date: 2003-09-05 09:50:11
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.14444
Rachel, like this revision and glad you indicated what Cleopatra's nose was related to it clarified it for me. Just having one reflection to the past makes this a more straight forward poem. Thanks for helping me with the understanding. Tom

This Poem was Critiqued By: Brandon Gene Petit On Date: 2003-09-04 16:53:32
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 8.28205
A brief yet clever poem with an effective twist at the end. You are noticing a distinctive mark on your child as a premonition for success. Many parents recognize the qualities that make their children unique, and expect them to become distinguishing trademarks upon reaching fame. - Brandon
This Poem was Critiqued By: Elaine Marie Phalen On Date: 2003-09-03 22:10:38
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.71429
OK, my crit on the first version was really awful (I'm operating on the fly much of the time now, with first-week-of-school blurriness!!). But this compact edition retains the essence of theme. The tetrameter is really effective, especially when it suddenly loses a foot in the last line. The dimple-nose juxtaposition is still there. Small things can have profound influence, indeed; if one were to change a single feature, would the ramifications multiply exponentially, so that the closest person to the subject would react, affecting two other people's opinions, who would then impact on four others and so on? The speaker's supposition conceals a great deal of reflection on the relative importance of seemingly-insignificant details. Cleopatra's nose may well have been so wonderfully sculpted that many men were smitten by it, and in turn, formed an alliance with the Queen which had far-flung consequences. Of course, how can we single out one specific part as being the essence of "beauty"? It may be the way each one is assembled in combination with other features ... Cleo's nose wasn't the whol eo fher charm, nor is Amanda's dimple the only endearing trait she possesses. The unformed persona of the baby has so much potential, as expressed in the tiniest elements. One never knows what sort of effect even the most innocent characteristic may have, on a much larger scale. More than meets the eye, here! Brenda
This Poem was Critiqued By: Jeff Green On Date: 2003-09-02 03:02:15
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.12500
Oh, well that changed everything, I suppose.
This Poem was Critiqued By: Claire H. Currier On Date: 2003-09-01 09:55:46
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.12000
nice revision Rachel... Amanda, tender in her skin Extends a leg, and I suppose The tiny dimple in her knee As apt to change the universe As Cleopatra’s nose good a name as Cleopatra's anyday..... tender in her skin......makes one think she is about two years old perhaps a tad older......tiny dimple in her knee is seen as she extends her leg.....and for what purpose are we extending this leg perhaps in dance form? Now that would be enough to change the universe to see the comparison though to Cleopatra's nose......well done and the images projected are superb. thank you for sharing this revision with safe and God Bless, Claire
This Poem was Critiqued By: Irene E Fraley On Date: 2003-08-29 22:25:42
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.11538
Hi Rachel, Your poetry is always deliniated so cleanly, as if you are using a drafting pen. Is this a particular form of poetry? I particularly like the way in which the reader is led from a detail as specific as a dimple in a baby's knee to consideration of her potential power to change the universe. This movement from the tiny detail to universal consideration is surely the mark of a mature writer. I do not know the refference to "Cleopatra's nose" which inhibits my understanding of the poem, but the sound of it is interesting. Thanks for a good read, Rene
This Poem was Critiqued By: Sandra J Kelley On Date: 2003-08-28 22:13:38
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Oh Rachel, this is wonderfull. tender in her skin is such a wonderful line I see a small child with skin still soft extending a leg and you looking at her fondly supposing that adorable dimple to be so meaningful. Every word adds something. This poem is full of wonder. There is something else too, that word tender in the first line sets the emotional tone of the poem. It causes me to feel tenderness toward both the observer supposing and Amanda and her dimpled knee. This is one of your best. Sandra
This Poem was Critiqued By: Michael J. Cluff On Date: 2003-08-28 18:15:11
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
I find this poem to be highly effective in its originality and vitality as expressed beautifully by the unique images/similes found in the first and last two lines (..."Cleopatra's nose.") of the piece. The use of body parts is wonderfully done by the poem's reliance on the more unpredictable,yet highly evocative and appropraite choices made here as in the third line of the work ( "dimple in her knee"). The feeling of hopefulness and the idea that each individual change shape the future in important ways is done with a sure and supple touch. The shift in exactness and expert use of minute perfect details to a more universal and interesting statemnent of the human condition was achieved effortlessly and with great impact. The rhyming of "suppose" and "nose" was a great touch as well. Give my best to Amanda and her mom for me and tell her I am glad she has decided to join us here on this terrestial orb.
This Poem was Critiqued By: Joanne M Uppendahl On Date: 2003-08-28 13:40:33
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.80769
Roni: I hadn't yet read the first version of this work, until now: "Amanda, tender in her skin Extends a leg - and I suppose The tiny dimple in her knee As apt to change the universe As was the sight of Helen’s face And Cleopatra’s nose" I love it - for you've conveyed the perfection of an infant's "tiny dimple" and the cherishing view the speaker gives us and comparies it with the legendary Helen of Troy's face and Cleopatra's nose. This whimsical touch succeeds in allowing the reader to see Amanda through the adoring eyes of the speaker. I've been revisiting the Iliad, recently reading a book derived from this source. So the famed wife of Meneleus has been in my thoughts. The reality is that this baby girl literally may be as beautiful and potentially as powerful as these famed women, because she is beloved, She is worthy of such praise simply because of her being, even without the attributions of history. And I pray that as she grows older, her experiences will reflect the autonomy and freedom of purpose that these famed women may not have enjoyed! resulting in "Amanda, tender in her skin Extends a leg, and I suppose The tiny dimple in her knee As apt to change the universe As Cleopatra’s nose" I love this one, too. I do feel that the lengthier fifth line which was omitted was a grand preparation for the final shortened one. This revised version, however, juxtaposes "universe" with "nose." C'est tres droll! I think I would have to choose this one, which focuses more on Amanda as ot doesn't call to mind the complex political drama of Helen's life. All the best, Joanne
This Poem was Critiqued By: Andrea M. Taylor On Date: 2003-08-28 11:48:08
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 8.44928
Rachel, For what is worth, what you did "cull" doesn't change the poem's message. However, the last line isn't really needed for me to complete the thought. Since the poem, as I see (and saw)it, is that it is the parent's view. From that perspective, the change in "the world" will happen anyway. In fact, to me, leaving off the last line would encourage the thinking of "How will this child change the world?". The subject matter is trite, you made the "subject" much more than that, both originally and now. This what poetry is about. Without the last line, I might have even had that dimple "propel" the universe. Sandra's idea proved to be quite enjoyable as well as productive. Andrea
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