This Poem was Submitted By: Rick Barnes On Date: 2005-09-15 02:21:32 . . . Click Here To Mail this Poem to a Friend!

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Last Dream

I dreamed I had been inside you Through all of the pieces of our parting. I exhaled each breath you caught  As you ran further and further away. I watched you through your own eyes In those mirrored moments When reflections betrayed you. I felt the palm of your heart  As it pushed me away Only to leave me lay  In guttural pain that felt so like fear In the swallow of your throat. When your tears were summoned one by one And gathered to pond your eyes, It was I who pushed them over the side That they not linger long. And when sleep at last reclaimed you And night stayed longer kind I kept my place and laid awake  Lightly across your mind. But just ‘til morning found you, Past that I couldn’t stay. I awoke and forgave you, A thousand miles away.

Copyright © September 2005 Rick Barnes

This Poem was Critiqued By: Latorial D. Faison On Date: 2005-10-07 21:52:21
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.96000
This is awesome Rick. The words alone are beautiful and poignant and loving. But there's a sort of unforced rhythm that surfaces in this poem. I don't think it's intentional, but it's so very natural . . . and it moves to a lovely beat with every word of this poem. It's as though this poem was meant to be or had to be. This is more than just a love poem. It's the kind of poem that people read, want to read to others and remember forever. Great job. Latorial

This Poem was Critiqued By: Thomas Edward Wright On Date: 2005-10-06 21:02:46
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
... I awoke and I forgave you, From one thousand thoughts away. ?
This Poem was Critiqued By: Claire H. Currier On Date: 2005-10-06 12:23:56
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Rick this is so beautifully touching and filled with so much love still. Don't score higher then a one, this is not really a critique being so late in the month and my mind not functioning well but after reading I just wanted you to know you touched my soul with this one. God Bless, Claire
This Poem was Critiqued By: Jillian K Sorenson On Date: 2005-10-02 17:03:14
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.56250
This is a very interesting piece about seeing a relationship breakup through the eyes of the other. Nicely crafted. I like the forgiveness and understanding here....I doubt many would be so kind to someone who broke their heart. Can't tell if the occasional rhyming here is intentional or accidental. It's nice though. Lovely freeverse poem.
This Poem was Critiqued By: Troy D Skroch On Date: 2005-09-28 22:09:03
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Rick, I read this several times and am still shaking my head in amazement at some of the lines. I realize that this is not exactly a happy poem, but it's great expression, forgive me for my excitement. The title works well and foreshadows the ending of something. I begin to read and realize quickly that it a relationship. I dreamed I had been inside you Through all of the pieces of our parting. Normally we dream about something, but you take it further in the narrative and have the individual dreaming "through all of the pieces." I like this because it is unusual in a sense, but then I have not been put in this position. To be able to "watch" somebody through their own eyes. Neat. Love the "mirrored moments." And the betrayals of "reflections." But, "I felt the palm of your heart, as it pushed me away," is just great! Your poem written from the inside of one to another with the another inside of the one. It's just amazing writing, fresh and original. To feel the "swallow" in the throat, the tears "pond" in the eyes, the realization the narrator has in that it was their fault for the tears. "laid awake lightly across your mind...," is superb! The empathetic perspective of the narrator ending with forgiveness, combined with your ability as a poet, has produced a flawless piece of writing! Bravo! I'm standing, Troy
This Poem was Critiqued By: Tony P Spicuglia On Date: 2005-09-25 18:13:06
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Rick, I am going to speak to tiny piece of this as they meet me. Your verse always carries a potent theatric, a passionate story, and when I am done, it is always worth several more reads. That is why I will speak to you about me, about you. Last Dream – I am an eternal dreamer of beauty and passion. I seldom have a bad dream, and almost always my dreams are filled with messages waiting to be absorbed, and loves, mimicking my greatest desires, known and unknowns. The last, is always my favorite. I dreamed I had been inside you Through all of the pieces of our parting. I exhaled each breath you caught – I do not believe there is a greater intimacy than breathing in, with fervor, the breath of my love (whomever it is), and the thought of being inside of her, to feel and exchange without confusion, that overwhelming power is a synergistic thought. As you ran further and further away. I watched you through your own eyes In those mirrored moments When reflections betrayed you. – It is not without temperance that the soul can watch a leaving, and choose to continue. To watch such, with another’s feelings, as the leaving was you, this would be a transference that would catalog for both, the passion residing in the association, and loss. I felt the palm of your heart As it pushed me away Only to leave me lay In guttural pain that felt so like fear In the swallow of your throat. – I understand the loss, where loss requires redemption of itself. These (4) lines are so feral and virile that they assault my senses with compassion- compassion and desire- and fear. You have captured you soul so completely, in her, that I understand it with a saturation of emotion. When your tears were summoned one by one And gathered to pond your eyes, It was I who pushed them over the side That they not linger long. – To awaken to loss, the breathless ness, the need, the love, the passion, and the aloneness. You have captured the resilience of your spirit, for you embraced the memory/love/need, and chose to honor it by moving beyond, with memories of the sweetness. And when sleep at last reclaimed you And night stayed longer kind I kept my place and laid awake Lightly across your mind. But just ‘til morning found you, Past that I couldn’t stay. I awoke and forgave you, A thousand miles away. – This is a moment of redemption for the soul, of honor to love, of love found and genesis reclaimed. Of forgiveness I know well, of morning’s stave of innocence, I know well, and also, none have written it better than this piece, and that, I know well, for it redeems me as well.
This Poem was Critiqued By: Lora Silvey On Date: 2005-09-16 22:18:32
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.80952
Gee Rick, Your structure is good, the words flow easily, as you lead your reader through this heart wrenching odyssey. I could visualize each description and feel the agony with each breath and word read. This is the type of poem that makes one want to reach out and touch the authors hand and say it’s alright, we are here for you knowing that nothing will ease this pain, only time can make it easier to live with. Lora
This Poem was Critiqued By: marilyn terwilleger On Date: 2005-09-16 16:15:31
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Hi Rick, This is such a sad piece that it is heart wrenching to read. You have written some outstanding lines that are like a knife in my heart....I exhaled each breath you caught as you ran further and further away...this could easily be said in two ways...a loss of a loved one through death or just a painful parting of the ways. Sometimes I think 'parting of the ways' for whatever reason is more difficult to deal with than death of a partner...death was not a parting of choice....I felt the palm of your heart as it pushed me away..this line effects me in a profound way...palm of your heart is a beautiful choice of words....only to leave me lay in guttural pain that felt so like is fear because there is no other way to express that deep emotional abyss....tears were summoned one by one and gathered to pond your eyes...another amazing line!.. was I who pushed them over the side that they not linger long...this line is almost like an apology for bringing "her" to tears...lovely and sad....I awoke and forgave you, a thousand miles away....your grief over the loss of this relationship is paramount in every line you have written. My heart goes out to you becuase I know what losing someone you love that deeply is like. It is a burning pain that never gives up but you do learn to live with it so it doesn't incompacitate you like it did the moment it happened. Well written poem and one I can relate to on a personal level...thank you for posting it and I believe it will do well this month...goes on my list! Peace...Marilyn
This Poem was Critiqued By: Dellena Rovito On Date: 2005-09-16 14:21:50
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.87500
Rick, I loved this and hated this! One must know what they are talking about, to write of it. So to have written such, pains me. It's horrific to allow someone that much control over our emotional well being. I've done it a few times. And only after a year or two looking back can I kick myself for wasting my life moments on so much regret. As a poet/person I do want to experiuence everything fully. But upon being seasick I'm ready to fall into the ocean in misrey but I really don't care to drown. At times I lose my perspective........ This poem speaks to me of being close. Almost holy close. And to lose that is almost a sin. What I do know is the new depth of loving you've learned stays as a part of you and your makeup. You may now love anything/anyone to that degree'of depth. Think of the's only up from here. Heaps of admiration for your ability to touch others. Your last line was so honorable. Huge hug to you Dellena
This Poem was Critiqued By: arnie s WACHMAN On Date: 2005-09-16 14:06:42
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.22222
Ah gee, a nice sentimental poem about love. Parting is such sweet sorrow as they say and this poem delicately points that out...yet somehow I gather this was not a mutual parting. The Last Dream is sensitive and caring and wants forgiveness. Good rhyme schemata. Good title to fit. Thanks.
This Poem was Critiqued By: Joanne M Uppendahl On Date: 2005-09-15 07:46:56
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Rick: The loss of personal ego, the complete submersion of self in the other are the things that stand out in this poem for me. The separation of one being from another when two have become ‘one consciousness’ seems as painful a state as can be imagined. In the process of extrication of one identity from the other, the sensitive lover feels the anguish of both. In romantic love, it seems for a time as if the other becomes resident in one’s own thoughts, feelings and body. At first, an inner observer, a voice that is the other’s, makes dwelling as one discrete individual less lonely. All perceptions are altered, as the lover is present mentally at all times. The only similarity I can think of which is as intense as this is grief, in which the preponderance of thoughts are of the loved one who has died. Nearly all focus and concentration is on the missing individual, so that other thoughts are crowded out. One literally is beside oneself with the feeling of emptiness and having been ‘halved’ at the parting. All of this comes through strongly in this poem. It is painful to read, and yet cathartic, for as another human being I am taken to my own remembrances of such searing disconnections. At the time we wonder if survival of the individuated self is possible. To experience the parting of both, alive in each of “the pieces of our parting” seems beyond endurance. "I exhaled each breath you caught/ As you ran further and further away." The speaker does not willingly release the other, nor is this possible because of the melding of two in perhaps a symbiotic pairing. I watched you through your own eyes In those mirrored moments When reflections betrayed you. I felt the palm of your heart As it pushed me away Only to leave me lay In guttural pain that felt so like fear In the swallow of your throat. I don’t think I have read any lines more poignant of the ending of a romantic relationship. The pain described is eviscerating, lancing. The pushing away, by the gentle “palm of your heart” implies the most inward kind of perception. The “guttural pain” here is heart rending, and shared by both parties. The speaker seems not to withdraw in a self-protective mechanism, but to approach this agony willingly, as if to embrace it and thus fully realize it. Make it final. As one does in grief, reminding oneself that the loved one has died with every third thought, so that remembrance doesn’t utterly shatter sanity. When your tears were summoned one by one And gathered to pond your eyes, It was I who pushed them over the side That they not linger long. Compassion for the suffering of the other seems overwhelming here. Magnificent use of “pond” as a verb. Each word and line is so lightly placed, as delicate as to cause less pain for the one who “laid awake lightly across your mind.” But just ‘til morning found you, Past that I couldn’t stay. I awoke and forgave you, A thousand miles away. The entire poem seems to rest on the final line’s distance. It’s as if the speaker, as a disembodied soul, overshadowed the beloved in sleep, experiencing her suffering along with her, tenderly easing it and letting her go in a final release which, at dream’s end, includes forgiveness. The speaker seems not to be counting the cost of the subsuming of self with the lover. This is a haunting, evocative poem, Rick. You allow the reader to enter into that most sacred inner sanctum, the broken heart. This poem seems written at no safe distance from the experience, as it doesn’t even assume the form of a rhymed and metered expression, but comes directly from the most immediate kind of reflection, as action which still takes place in the present moment. This is the kind of intimate poem that makes the reading an exercise in expansion of my awareness of my own life. In an eerie kind of way, this poem enhances my understanding in that the poet gives words to states of being that are so subtle as to be indescribable. This one belongs with your finest work, IMO. And yet, it stands alone. The closest analogy I can find for my own reaction to your poem is this: To be present at the vivisection of one’s own soul and writing of it. As always, your poetry seems to sink in for me ‘where I live’ as your provide a language of feelings that supersedes anything I’ve read elsewhere. Remarkable in every sense. The suffering which produced this sublime poem is too evident for me to write 'bravo' or other intrusive exclamations. I'd only like to give the poet a hug, if possible. If this is your story. Joanne
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