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Old Oct 05, 2010, 07:10 PM   #1
jabble524
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Join Date: Mar 29, 2009
Posts: 4
Default Awake

Hello, this is something that I wrote about exploring the unconscious mind. If anyone has time, I would love feedback.

Awake

As I approach the portal, between consciousness and sleep
I smell the romantic aroma of peach mango scented candles
The sweet fragrance of burning apple cinnamon incense
And intoxicating cherry vanilla perfume, drifting across from the other side

When I crossover into dreams
I hear serpents and scoundrels, speaking in tongues
Sirens singing of carnal delights, for shipwrecked sailors
And a seductive symphony of unconscious desires

I see bright yellow eyes, glowing in the summer moonlight
The reaper and father time playing chess, one of them nearing checkmate
The Phoenix rising from the ashes, of forgotten senses
And vibrant colors of red, orange, blue, pink, and purple

I feel cold hands reaching out from the shadows
Warm breath on the back of my neck, my hairs standing on end
Smooth velvet skin crawling beneath silk sheets
And wet tongues that slither slowly across my chest

At an elegant banquet, I dine on the finest ambrosia
A flavorful assortment of tastes, with sweet spices and marinades
Lobster tails and crab legs, smoked salmon, glazed shrimp, and filet mignon
Cooked vegetables, forbidden fruit, cheesecake with caramel, and white wine

Across the crowded ballroom, and through a maze of forgettable faces
I see a beautiful woman in a black sequined dress
She has soft white skin and long auburn hair
Red fingernails and a radiant smile, behind crimson lipstick

Her eyes are mysterious and mesmerizing
The right one is light blue
And the left one is dark green
Neither seem confined by mortality, or concerned with time

After a few moments she notices my transfixed gaze
And our eyes meet in a moment of unconscious destiny
Then she smiles seductively, and confidently walks towards me
As she approaches, I can smell her intoxicating perfume
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Old Oct 05, 2010, 08:53 PM   #2
Maggie Mae
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Join Date: Dec 23, 2002
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Posts: 892

Default

Hi there - just passing by and noticed your post. Thought I'd give it a read and maybe some feedback, if you don't mind!

I really like the imagery and the mystery surrounding this otherwordly place. You've set up some really interesting visuals and I love the way you play with textures in your writing -- things like "Smooth velvet skin crawling beneath silk sheets" gave me shivers! I also like the way you play with the senses - I think you cover each of the five senses in the poem so it really is a very sensual piece, hitting all the important parts and engaging us through each of our experiential gateways to reality. Nice!

Some things to think about? Try to be less literal in your descriptions -- the beautiful woman (and I might use a different word; beautiful is too cliche, almost, for poetry nowadays) and her description, for example, is too literal. What I mean by that is that you're spelling out exactly what you mean, when maybe alluding to it or dancing around it figuratively might lead to more interesting writing. Maybe the speaker gets a feeling that crackles through the air and makes him look that way, and then he's not really sure what he sees, but he has an impression and that's all... rather than saying the woman looks this way or does this thing, you suggest and imply that she is mysterious and leave the rest to the reader. Does that make sense?

Also, you've got a great opportunity here to play with synaesthesic descriptions - mixup the senses so that you describe the way a colour tastes or how a scent feels; tell your reader what the "cold hands reaching out from the shadows" taste like, or the way "Lobster tails and crab legs, smoked salmon, glazed shrimp, and filet mignon / Cooked vegetables, forbidden fruit, cheesecake with caramel, and white wine" feel like on the skin when the speaker takes a bite. Do you know what I mean? Synaesthesia is a fabulous way to open perceptual doors and see things in a new light. You've got a real knack for description, so challenge yourself, write some synaesthetic lines, and see what comes from it! I can almost guarantee that you'd have a very different, trippy poem if you included a few strange lines like that (much more in keeping with the theme of the subconscious, methinks!)

Hope that helps!

~Mags
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Old Oct 06, 2010, 09:14 PM   #3
jabble524
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Join Date: Mar 29, 2009
Posts: 4
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Thank you so much for the detailed feedback and analysis. I really appreciate it. I had not thought about mixing up the senses, like how a color tastes. That is a fantastic idea cause it definitely would give the piece a much more dream like effect. I will definitely try to work with these new ideas and incorporate them where I can. Again, thank you so much.

- Jason
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