This Poem was Submitted By: Mick Fraser On Date: 2004-04-25 17:27:11 . . . Click Here To Mail this Poem to a Friend!

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Creature Comforts

My view of the world is through cats' eyes often curious, often frightened, often not caring I mostly want to be left alone Her vision is through the eyes of an old nag often curious, often frightened, often disgusted She mostly wants love My water bowl is filled with whisky lapping up liquid that is my catnip always after laying on my favorite recliner Her trough provides hidden morsels of comfort she chews with large blunt teeth but she is never nourished

Copyright © April 2004 Mick Fraser

Additional Notes:
Trying to get away from my prosy self. TY again for your ongoing reads.

This Poem was Critiqued By: Joanne M Uppendahl On Date: 2004-05-04 16:41:52
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.97368
Mick: You've gotten away from your 'prosy self' dramatically here! Please forgive my delay in commenting - a bit of traveling has made my critiques briefer and late, but I hope still welcome. This whimsical 'point-of-view' poem is both charming and disarming. It makes me laugh and also wonder - who is the speaker referring to as 'her'? - no need to reply. The speaker seems pretty 'sober' for having a water bowl filled with whiskey! <smile> My view of the world is through cats' eyes often curious, often frightened, often not caring I mostly want to be left alone Her vision is through the eyes of an old nag often curious, often frightened, often disgusted She mostly wants love (true of many of us 'old nags') My water bowl is filled with whisky lapping up liquid that is my catnip always after laying on my favorite recliner (I think "lying" is more correct, grammatically speaking.) Her trough provides hidden morsels of comfort she chews with large blunt teeth but she is never nourished Now I have the 'sounds' of chewing "with large blunt teeth" and a cat lapping out of a water bowl competing with each other! The oral activity seems decreed not to grant the comfort nor nourishment which is sought. A fine, ironic parody of the life of a couple who are of different species. As always, Mick, your work is original in style and spicy in flavor. Very tasty morsels for discerning readers! Thank you for this poem - it gives me much to ponder, and inspires -- perhaps, a parody of my own. <smile> Keep them coming! Kudos! All my best, Joanne

This Poem was Critiqued By: Mell W. Morris On Date: 2004-04-27 19:01:02
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.92593
Mick: I have some problems dissecting this poem in terms of point of view or who speaks when. I'm certain it is obvious to you (and perhaps everyone else) and I am having a brainless moment here. I like the title. I like that you see the world through the eyes of cats and interesting that you think cats see the world through the eyes of old horses. Stanzas 1 and 2 are in the 1st person so I assume it is poet who speaks. Second stanza is from cat's p.o.v. written in third person and stanza four is from the horse's mouth? If this is accurate, I'm on the right path. You say as cat, you are curious, frightened and uncaring. These traits belong to many cats I've known as in "I mostly want to be left alone." It's odd hearing that phrase from a poet and I wonder to whom you refer: family, friends, co-workers and people in general? I am a recluse of sorts and relate to the want-to-be-alone notion. Or as the poet said, "The world is too much with us." It really strikes me because in S3 you are lying on your favorite recliner just as the same poet (Wordsworth) lies on his couch. S2 we see cat's look at the world thru the horses's eyes: curious, frightened, disgusted but wanting love. This is a novel concept for me. Thanks for tendering it. The naughty poet has a water bowl of whiskey, his "catnip" after reclinering. This is quite clever and humorous. S3 is filled with harmony of L's and I like the allits in lapping/liquid. Now the horse's view of morsels of comfort (nice phrase) in her feeding trough. Most equine creatures have large blunt teeth but it is too-totally cool that you include it as imagery in your poem. That single detail captures me and lightens the poem. Your final line is poignant and plaintive and plangent, "She is never nourished." Are you really speaking of the horse or is this a metaphor for a lot of people in the world? The second, I think, which broadens the scope of your metaphor. Indeed your entire poem is like an MMPI, a psychological tool for measuring personality traits. They are there, not all but many. To create and deliver the poem through the eyes of animals is unique and imaginative. (And a break from prose). Hope I interpreted it close to your intent but even if I missed, I greatly enjoyed the read. Kudos! Mell Morris
This Poem was Critiqued By: Jordan Brendez Bandojo On Date: 2004-04-26 18:18:30
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.58824
Hi Mick, I am glad I see your submission for this month. I like this one. It has fresh ideas and concept. I can relate the situation in your life when you can compare it like the cats. I also have that times in my life when I want to be lieft alone but did not have the time when I was furious like what you described. My favorite line: "My water bowl is filled with whisky lapping up liquid that is my catnip always after laying on my favorite recliner" What a good time! I like the alliterations water/with/whiskey and lapping/liquid. Thanks for sharing, it is a privilege to have read your poem. Jordan
This Poem was Critiqued By: G. Donald Cribbs On Date: 2004-04-25 22:17:43
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.55172
Mick, I see that you're a student poet, taking workshop. You've got a good start here, something on paper. You have begun to articulate it in a way that will eventually lead you to "good poetry." You've got a few layers of meaning going on through your poems. A light, simple language, not heavy with imagery, not particularly memorable as a poetic voice different from the masses, but something. What I suggest for you is that you continue to write and you read other poets. Reading is the first step if you're not already doing it. Read who you like and find who you like and read everything by them. For example, I read Robert Bly, James Wright, Rainer Maria Rilke, Mary Oliver and Rumi. Try those or others you like and see what it is about their poems that you like. Then, write poems as you are influenced by them. This will help you start to find your voice. As for this poem, I would say the title is trite, cliche. The content is repetitive, unmemorable, and it doesn't say much that hasn't been said in a new way before. What is the purpose of a poem? What is its job? Answer that, and then look again at this poem and see if you can find a few things to add or change. Please do keep posting and sharing your poems. Remember, it is a process. I've got poems I wrote once and never revised. I've got other poems I've revised literally hundreds of times over a period of over 15 years and I've only just been satisfied with them. So, keep writing and reading, and you will find what you are looking for. I hope this has helped. Warm regards, Don
This Poem was Critiqued By: Jennifer j Hill On Date: 2004-04-25 21:21:04
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.87500
Hey Stranger, Hope you had a nice vacation. Y'uall's gift was sorely missed 'round here. I like your alliterative title. Some o' yu creatures sure have peculiar habits. Like drinking whiskey outa one o' them there water bowls. But otha then that I like where yu went with this. LOL sorry , couldn't resist. I haven't had anyone to pick on while you were gone. Sounds like the narrator might feel a tad married to the cat, so-to-speak. haha You use comparison/contrast for this piece and the outcome is interesting and endearing, but I think there is more you could explore with this line of reasoning. For instance, maybe give us a few more morsels about each of your social lifes. One thing I would lose is the overuse of the word 'often'. Maybe try saying "always curious, often frightened, sometimes not caring" just as an example. Another change you might think about is in S-3, L-2 try ["I lap up liquid"] so we know what or who is doing the lapping(Not the water bowl). Nice "L"s and fricative "F"s in this. I like the overall feel of this piece. I'm curious why the morsels are hidden in S-1? I hope you don't think I'm picking the entire poem apart, because I actually really enjoyed reading this one. Next thing I know, you'll tell me this was about you and your wife. LOL. Glad you're back! Peace, Jennifer ps The Sweet Dream's belly got tickled in the Lake again! And she was loving it!
This Poem was Critiqued By: Wayne R. Leach On Date: 2004-04-25 20:59:55
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.61644
Mick, another nice one from your pen. The repetitive phrases in S1 & S2 I find very effective combined with the alliterative t's. Then you fill S3 with the great short "i" alliterations. I might move "always" up after "is" in L2 of this stanza to see how it works. [Just a thought] The last stanza is grrrround into the reader's consciousness with the rolling r's contrasted with the attacking of the "t" alliterations there. Super job. Peace and happiness. Wayne
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