Friction Poem by Max Reif


Rating: 4.2

the body
moving in space through time

the mind
churning gears of thought

the timeless world
the world of time

Pierre Bonnard, I learned yesterday,
enshrined his aging, difficult wife
as a youthful goddess in paintings
depicting their home as Paradise:

a state he lived in,
or aspired to?

The artist speaks
to the figure in the Grecian urn,
the Byzantine mosaic:

“Tell me your secret! ”
and then recoils—
Am I talking to my own creations?

No, no, he shakes his head.
It's you I'm speaking to,
O Soul behind the world—
so near, so far.

Michael Voorhis 27 December 2005

I love the wording in the poem and how it flows. I especially like the last two stanzas. Very good job.

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Charles Chaim Wax 27 December 2005

the great Japanese Zen Master Dogen in his Shobogenzo, the Eye and Treasury of the True Law, wrote a chapter called Uji Time-Being exploring this matter which you also explore and which every hmuan must explore to come to terms with his very own life and death of course your words are also beautiful and moving flowing as a true poet's should be a wonderful poem

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Joseph Daly 27 December 2005

This is fantastic Max. I love Bonnard's works. If I'm not mistaken, his painting 'The Letter' is of his youthful wife. Your piece captures the images of this titan very well and makes me wish that we could get exhibit of Bonnard's work over here. I recall seeing his 'Study for a Portrait of Vuillard' some years back, and falling in love with it. This is a great piece Max and so well structured Well done mate, i am really moved by it.

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... ... 27 December 2005

phrases like 'aging difficult wife' serve to counterbalance the weightiness of other lines and when you get to the closing stanza you display unbelievable control and don't put a foot wrong. nothing more to say on the matter except this is clearly a very good poem concisely carrying the scent of numerous things.

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Ian Blake 27 December 2005

The 'I learned yesterday' in line 8 was a beautiful, but easy to overlook, touch as well, since a theme of the poem is the ever-evolving intellect/soul.

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not an acrostic poem of friction

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John Kay 29 December 2005

Max...this poem really surprised me in the end with its brilliant conclusion. I had trouble feeling grounded in the first three stanzas, but with the word Bonnard I got instant traction. Wonderful.

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Tania S 28 December 2005

Its honest, a deep sort of self-evaluation on different levels... great poem!

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Michael Philips 28 December 2005

Very well done, Max. I agree with what Adam said about the counterbalancing of the different lines.

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Uriah Hamilton 27 December 2005

Powerful thought and beauty in this one, Max.

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Max Reif

Max Reif

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