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Old 07-09-2018, 12:39 AM View Post #1 (Link) Dinner Table Taxidermy
Jaywing (Offline)
Literary Artist
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 363
Points: 16.52
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(I haven't posted writing since 2009 so I'm posting this now. I wrote this poem for my first year course in creative writing, when I was probably seventeen or eighteen. I've edited it since, but it still needs a lot of work. I'm really mostly posting because I can't let The Nightmare, a paragraph I wrote a decade ago, be my most recent piece on here.)

Dinner Table Taxidermy

Droopy eyes, jetlag, tiny hands clenched
Around a stuffed bear. I am three.
Quiet breathing, muffled dreams, nightmares fought
Away by a fearsome lion,
His head hangs suspended from the wall;
On his face an ethereal, lifeless roar.

Around him are his subjects: a bear,
A cat, a raccoon, a deer.
More, faded from memory.
Their faces frozen in expressions of fear,
Of pride and might, they reflect on battles won
And a final fight lost.

Their heads taken as trophies,
As dinner table decorations.
And I wonder what happened to the bodies;
I think now of headless animals running
In mindless glee through the forest,
While their heads slump in a dining room.

There could be a tribe of them—of headless animals.
The lion leading with a bloody stump
Of a neck.
Instead of roaring for attention, he would stomp
Hard enough that the ground would shake
And his subjects would feel this and come to him.

They would frolic through a forest
In a halfway land, where things are not whole,
While the heads have pleasant
Afternoon tea small talk,
And sophisticated dinner table conversations
With their murderers.
						Last edited by Jaywing; 07-09-2018 at 12:40 AM.
					 Reason: Trying to make the title bold.
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Old 07-09-2018, 10:11 AM View Post #2 (Link)
Holden (Offline)
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Join Date: Jul 2018
Posts: 7
Points: 7
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Very amusing. Where you say

"Around him are his subjects: a bear, ..
next stanza"

I was caught out by the caesura of "subjects:" in that first stanza and I felt it mucked up the rhythm of the following list.

If you said:
"Around him are his subjects:
a bear, ... "

Rather than in the same line, I think it would flow better.

Where you say "In a halfway land, where things are not whole."
Halfway land is self explanatory and I don't think that you need to elaborate with "where things are not whole." It might sound better if you said just "In a halfway land." or "In a land where things are not whole."
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