MaddiiAnne O'Leary

Rookie (18th July 1995 / Crescent Head)

Who To Choose. - Poem by MaddiiAnne O'Leary

You!
You have the key to lock my prison door.
The prison I lock myself in.
I lock myself up, so I don't hurt anyone.

It's you or the jealous ex, who do you think I would choose?
One is smart, can defend himself and knows when to shut his mouth.
The second is dumb, can't even defend himself and never shuts his mouth even if the conversation has gone too far.
I never make the same mistake three times.

I've been in this prison for years at a time.
I don't want to make that mistake again.
But if I do, I will lock that door and stay there forever.
It's all up to you.

That is my key, my key that I unconciously gave to you.
So what will you do with that key?
Lock me back up or let me free?
It's all up to you, isn't it?


Comments about Who To Choose. by MaddiiAnne O'Leary

  • (6/16/2010 11:27:00 PM)

    The name of the this poem is 'Your Face In The Mirror' and I'll make comment on the rest of the poem as well.

    You! (yes you!)
    You have the key to (X) lock (X) my prison door.
    The prison (where) I (keep) myself (lock) in.
    -=-=- when using the same word with a different meaning try to make the word uncomplicated to the reader. Define the word slightly as I did in the sentence. (up) might be a better preposition rather than (in)
    I lock myself up(,) so I don't hurt anyone.

    It's you(,) or the jealous ex, (which) do you think I would choose?
    One is smart, can defend himself(,) and (he) knows when to shut his mouth.
    The second is dumb, (and) can't even defend himself( ;) /
    (he) never shuts his mouth( ;) even if the conversation has gone too far.
    -=-=- I broke this line for cadence. Free verse maintains its accentual rhythm through line breaks / verses/ versification. You want to maintain the forward trust of contextual flow especially if you are not enjambing the lines. Longer lines make the poem move faster where shorter lines slow the poem down. Why because with each line comes a little breath that's breathed very quickly at the end of each line even when it is enjambed.

    I never make the same mistake three times.
    -=-=- this is fantastic line because of the content of the poem.

    I've been in this prison for years at a time.
    -=-=- I like what this implies but it is weakly said. More than one time in the prison. A second timer of sorts. So find a better way of saying this statement about the repeated offense.

    I don't want to do that again. (make that mistake again?)
    But if I do, (I'll) lock that door and throw that key away. (cliche/ find a better way to say it)
    -=-=- I'll bury the key under the outhouse, You get the idea. Be original and unique and make it itchy and uneasy for the reader.

    It's all up to you. (That's right! YOU!)
    -=-=- Be emphatic about it, make your reflection believe it.

    That key is the key of my heart, soul and love.
    -=-=- oh oh, the old heart and soul — LOVE stuff. I need to send you my poem about soul. So you will know how to use the word. I used to give it to my students. This is corny. Sorry the truth sometimes hurts. But take a laxative and you will feel better in the morning.: -) You have to say this somehow that is not corny and cliche. So work on that concept in this line. Teach yourself something about how to say it without saying it. Use the images you already have going for you in the poem. (Your prison) for one. If you are locked up so is your heart soul and love. So show that in some way that doesn't say that.

    So what (would) you do with that key?
    Lock me back up(,) or let me free?
    It's all up to you(...) isn't it?
    -=-=- and elipsis (...) show that something is missing. In this case (time, space or the word 'well', isn't it)

    This is called a critique. I'd love to have one on any of my poems.
    the one thing that I just loved about this poem is the conceit. You stuck to the same metaphor throughout the complete poem. Well done Maddy. Many find that difficult to do. Poetry has 3 basic characteristics. Music, metaphor, and form. In this poem you have an excellent metaphor and form was a tad weak with the long line falling out of cadence. And the music is a bit weak there too. But for the most part the poem flowed forward with a nice contextual flow. A bit prose like, but that's OK with this writer. For the subject matter the poem fit the form and form fit the poem. That's a Positive in my book. Good enough to write home to mom about, or even that prisoner behind the mirror. Later—

    a poet friend
    RH Peat
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  • (6/16/2010 8:53:00 PM)

    Thats really heart-felt. It's really good. (Report)Reply

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Poem Edited: Thursday, June 17, 2010


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