For those of you who have been following my blog you will know that I have been a member of Hawkesbury River Writers [HRW] since 2009. One of the things we get up to is set ourselves a challenge [an in-house competition if you like to call it]. The topics chosen may vary – from poetry to short story, article or speech. Whatever it is it has to meet certain guidelines, but must always have a “Readability” content, and there’s always a time limit – usually midnight on the Sunday before our next meeting which gives us a month to complete. After submission, the entries are sent out anonymously to all members to vote upon and provide their comments [the latter of course is the most invaluable part of the entire exercise, as to read what fellow writers have to say about your writing is what this is all about – otherwise how else are we to improve?].
The last Round Robin set was a poem. My entry was as follows:
“Love is dead” – By Robert L J Borg
The gallant shield of chivalry tumbles,
Upon the ground beneath the knight.
Away to distant places, travels
The crusader of love and fight.
As his venomous sword pierces
The delicate flesh of time,
His armour reflects the gore around,
The filth and the slime.
But now, as the blood flows,
It forms a stream of sadness;
Winding aimlessly toward the sea,
Driving all, to sudden madness.
Upon a steed so proud,
Evil lurked in all its elegance;
Looking down on the world below,
Planning out his macabre vengeance.
Fire and destruction were the call;
The fiend rode out ahead.
Then blackness absorbed all life,
For now, all life was dead.
Entry # 4. Love is dead (Robert)
Lynette: The images in this poem are powerful, and the rhythm and rhyme satisfying (if I can say that). I confess I found the title, the last line and the overall darkness of the poem hard to relate to.
Barry: A gory story with a dark ending BUT it has good readability.
Meryl: I liked the concept of this one but found it went out of rhythm and some words had to be read in a contrived manner to be made to fit.
Jan: The rhyming pattern is good with a mixture of masculine and feminine rhymes. This entry doesn’t follow an established rhythm pattern, and I wonder if it might not be better as free verse. I have to admit to being not altogether sure what the poet is saying. It is a very visual but its deeper meaning escapes me.
Julianne: Passionate and colourful, sad and hopeless yet, enigmatic. All is lost to the dictates of war, or is it? Perhaps he is spared. Perhaps he lives on to find love either for the first time or once again. Throughout time, so many young men lost their lives in battle before ever having known the love of a woman. I wonder if your warrior was one such young man or if he could at least had the sweet memory of love to take with him to his grave?
Hugh: I had to read this poem several times to absorb the full meaning. It was worth the effort. I am not sure about rhyme and meter but I don’t really care. The poem had real substance for me and was worth the read. It was epic in its presentation which is no mean feat in so few lines.
RLB – Tomewriter