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Basement Apartment

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Old 07-29-2018, 10:39 AM
E. Zamora (Online)
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Default Basement Apartment


She’s throwing my things into the suitcase
I borrowed for the honeymoon; and lifting

a tired line of dialog from her unfinished novel,
she says, “How did it come to this?”

I take in a long drink of warm wine and recall
the time we first made love in this room;

on the bare mattress, before we unboxed;
how she hovered over me on her haunches,

striped by shadows and bright light from
the high, barred window like an alien tiger.

So carefully, I extracted the splinter
of betrayal from her palm, but she kept it

hidden in a silver capsule beneath her pillow
and she stuck it in my side while I was sleeping.

Now the walls of our once safe haven
are bowed to breaking; pushed inward

by tons of red earth and the roots of massive
trees planted long before the war.

Ahead of the collapse and without her noticing,
I walk out and climb the crumbling stairs.


Last edited by E. Zamora; 07-29-2018 at 11:31 AM..
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Old 07-29-2018, 11:06 AM
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I would remove the last line. Not necessary, IMO
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Old 07-29-2018, 11:13 AM
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Best fucking line in the poem.

It stays.
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Old 07-29-2018, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by E. Zamora View Post
Best fucking line in the poem.

It stays.


We can agree to disagree if it makes you happy, but you’re wrong😀
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Old 07-29-2018, 11:24 AM
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Geez. I start posting poems, and suddenly everyone is an expert.
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Old 07-29-2018, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by E. Zamora View Post
Geez. I start posting poems, and suddenly everyone is an expert.


I’m an expert in only one thing and it’s not poetry. Although, poetry and plumbing are related like everything else. Trust me, man.
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Old 07-29-2018, 11:37 AM
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I'm not even much of an expert at what I do, but I'm fantastic at pretending I am.

Unlike plumbing, the results are not immediately apparent. If they eventually are, it's long after the checks have cleared.
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Old 07-29-2018, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by E. Zamora View Post
I'm not even much of an expert at what I do, but I'm fantastic at pretending I am.

Unlike plumbing, the results are not immediately apparent. If they eventually are, it's long after the checks have cleared.


I went to one of those “how to increase sales and customer satisfaction” seminars a few years ago on an invitation from a friend. Most of it was stupid, but one thing the main speaker said that stuck with me was: “if you rely on customers, you are not in the plumbing (electrical, air conditioning, hotel, restaurant, auto-care, etc.) business. You’re in the people business. Anybody with reasonable intelligence can learn any job/trade/skill. But people who can make others like them are invaluable.”
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Old 07-29-2018, 12:10 PM
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I get the point he's making. And interpersonal skills often make the difference for me.

But that seems like a pretty big overstatement. Anyone who's worked with contractors, regardless of the industry, would know that there are people out there who might have the basic skills to do the job properly or really well, but due to poor personal management and general incompetence in other areas, they constantly fuck things up. No amount of likeability can compensate for that, especially over the long hall.

Last edited by E. Zamora; 07-29-2018 at 12:52 PM..
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Old 07-29-2018, 01:27 PM
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Now bump my poem, motherfucker.
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Old 07-29-2018, 01:59 PM
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Originally Posted by E. Zamora View Post
She’s throwing my things into the suitcase
I borrowed for the honeymoon; and lifting

a tired line of dialog from her unfinished novel,
she says, “How did it come to this?”

I take in a long drink of warm wine and recall
the time we first made love in this room;

on the bare mattress, before we unboxed;
how she hovered over me on her haunches,

striped by shadows and bright light from
the high, barred window like an alien tiger.

So carefully, I extracted the splinter
of betrayal from her palm, but she kept it

hidden in a silver capsule beneath her pillow
and she stuck it in my side while I was sleeping.

Now the walls of our once safe haven
are bowed to breaking; pushed inward

by tons of red earth and the roots of massive
trees planted long before the war.

Ahead of the collapse and without her noticing,
I walk out and climb the crumbling stairs.


This is good, subtle, and I like the way you express more than one thing at a time. Even though it’s about him, I see her side too. Climb the crumbling stairs is a great ending. I could be too nit-picky, but I feel like S8 could be cleaner.

You have:
Now the walls of our once safe haven are bowed to breaking; pushed inward

Maybe: the walls of our safe haven are bowed to breaking; pushed inward

Also, I might remove “massive” from S9. It already feels massive without that word.
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Old 07-29-2018, 02:40 PM
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Makes total sense.

So quit qualifying and pretending you don't "know" anything about poetry.


Last edited by E. Zamora; 07-29-2018 at 02:43 PM..
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Old 07-29-2018, 03:48 PM
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Well, I know about words. I really can’t write poetry. But come to think of it, I have no interest in doing so.
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Old 07-29-2018, 04:00 PM
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I thought this was a fantastic poem up through "bowed to breaking." I'm not even sure I need to know what is causing the implosion. I get it, she betrayed you and it hurts knowing this betrayal-in-a-bottle was stowed away in her things the whole time. So I would leave the trees massive or not out of the whole thing, and I would consider loosing the last stanza too. Why the cutesy nah nah na nah nah at the end when nothing before is about being clever at escaping notice to get back at her? If this is not a poem about pain and betrayal, then, I read the whole thing wrong. Keep the last line. But this is a very good poem! Has great mood and perfect pacing.
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Old 07-29-2018, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by brianpatrick View Post
Well, I know about words. I really can’t write poetry. But come to think of it, I have no interest in doing so.
Well, you're either interested in poetry and see the value in it, or you don't.

Something compelled you to comment.

Maybe because there isn't anything else going on here?
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Old 07-29-2018, 05:19 PM
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Originally Posted by E. Zamora View Post
Well, you're either interested in poetry and see the value in it, or you don't.

Something compelled you to comment.

Maybe because there isn't anything else going on here?


I see the value in it, but have not much real interest in producing it. Or, I don’t want to take the time to seriously study the craft enough to become proficient at it.

I don’t read poetry for enjoyment anywhere but here. Sometimes I like them, and some times I see how they could be improved.

And yeah, sometimes I just read it because it popped up on the recent posts list.
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Old 07-30-2018, 03:22 AM
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Originally Posted by brianpatrick View Post
I see the value in it, but have not much real interest in producing it. Or, I don’t want to take the time to seriously study the craft enough to become proficient at it.

I don’t read poetry for enjoyment anywhere but here. Sometimes I like them, and some times I see how they could be improved.

And yeah, sometimes I just read it because it popped up on the recent posts list.
Based on your writing and how you express yourself, I bet you could do it if you wanted to without a lot of study. What helps most is just reading and practice, just like any other writing.
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Old 07-30-2018, 03:25 AM
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BrokenPoem, thank you for reading and commenting and glad it mostly worked for you. Not really seeing the "na na na" at the end though.
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