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    poetry


    dots Submission Name: the box in brooklyndots
    --------------------------------------------------------





    Author: deadndreaming
    Elite Ratio:    6.74 - 1359/1263/81
    Words: 598
    Class/Type: Poetry/Misc
    Total Views: 2173
    Average Vote:    No vote yet.
    Bytes: 4095



    Description:
       Thanks to girlinthephoto for the challenge and of course, paulie d for the topic. You're always making me think bro...trust me, it's not as long as it looks (I hope hehe). Be honest, k...no worries about hurt feelings or retaliation and such...not my style...just looking to learn something with each piece...so, good or bad, please let me know what you think.

    PS It seems to have a much better effect when read outloud


    Make the font bigger!! Double Spacing Back to recent posts.

    dotsthe box in brooklyndots
    -------------------------------------------


    And that's all I can
    recall of Brooklyn Bridge,
    tonight, John A Roebling
    and Washington Roebling
    built it, and it hath cables
    and it does one good
    to cross it everyday

                          Ė Jack Kerouac
                           The Brooklyn Bridge Blues

    the box in brooklyn

    I stare out onto the brooklyn bridge
    from my piece of shit apartment,
    picturing myself Washington Roebling
    feeling like I too, have the bends.
    see, if you ascend too quickly
    the decompression will strike you in the nervous system
    knock you down to your knees

    I know a little bit about being on knees

    the air in july is stifling .
    the oscillating fan on the table
    doesnít oscillate on me often enough.
    mama used to tell me if you donít circulate the air
    itíll leave a stench through the whole place.
    I figure, hell, I never took much of her advice
    so I might as well try this one

    they say roughly 27 people died building the bridge
    and it took about 14 years to fill out
    nearly 15,000 tons of stone and wire.
    it appears from here that a lot of cars cross it.
    I mostly just look at it;
    all my business takes place on this side

    bet I could take everything of value that I own
    and fit it into a cardboard box

    letís see...
    books of poetry (3)
    bottle of whiskey
    laptop
    cell phone
    wedding ring
    oscillating fan
    tv remote control
    wristwatch (not the one I wear, but the nice one sara bought me for christmas;
    she always said not to wear it Ďcept for special occasions)

    I imagine a lot of the people out there
    are headed for special occasions.
    maybe theyíll visit an uncle,
    spend a day or two upstate
    or see a show on broadway,
    go have a fancy dinner
    to celebrate an anniversary

    I donít celebrate anniversaries

    on good days, I stare out beyond the bridge
    where virgin gusts cut sharp waves
    out of time-traveled ocean.
    reminders of liberty
    lead to memories un-liberated;
    ones that could use some settin' free

    bet I could take all my guilt
    and fit it into a cardboard box

    for the stupid shit I used to say to sara
    and the way I neglected mama
    all the days wasted watching tv
    or chatting online
    and nights suffocating in whiskey and cocaine
    the way I treated people on my way up
    the way I treated people on the way down
    telling those girls I wasnít married
    before I fucked them
    all the lies told to God and myself

    I read that itís 6,016 feet long
    but to me itís not so much
    about the structure itself as it is
    the scope of everything on the other side,
    that stretches on forever


    a loss of oxygen can do funny things to the mind,
    make you see things that maybe arenít there.
    I saw sara as a window,
    she saw me as a locked door;
    she managed to find another way out.
    I found out that there are some things
    that just wonít fit in a cardboard box

    Iím thinkin 'bout calling a cab,
    giving him all my money
    and riding until the meter runs out...
    Iíll take my box of shit with me
    and leave it on the middle of the bridge

    maybe somebody else can find some use of it

    I just want to go someplace where I can breathe




    Submitted on 2005-03-19 15:36:02     Terms of Service / Copyright Rules
    Submissions: [ Previous ] [ Next ]

    Rate This Submission

    1: >_<
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    3: meh!
    4: Pretty cool
    5: Wow!




    ||| Comments |||
      i have been reading several of your pieces...and really have enjoyed them...you are a really strong writer....smart and crisp in your phrasing and momentum...

    but this one really caught my eye...

    my life in a box...all the other lives paralleled to the brooklyn bridge...how i built my life and what it has become...how the bridge was built...who died in the making of it...how many hearts i have killed in making me...

    i can't breathe...just want to breathe...put my life in the box...leave it in the middle of the bridge so it can blend with all the other lives the bridge represents...

    one of the reason this captures my heart...is that i grew up in the bronx..and we had family friends who lived in Brooklyn...so i traveled over that bridge many many times as a kid...

    also my second ex wife was from Flatbush...and we are still very close..

    so there is a flavor to this that i still taste from my younger days..

    jacob
    | Posted on 2011-04-20 00:00:00 | by jacoberin | [ Reply to This ]
      So many commetns. Looks like you really struck a chord with this one. I am fuccing HORRIBLE at critique and comments blah blah blah. I don't like to tell people how I think their work should sound etc. I only let em know when I like it. And I can honestly say that this was really fuccin well written and thought out. I dig it alot so Ima keep it. That is all....good day sir.

    6
    | Posted on 2006-12-28 00:00:00 | by fryte | [ Reply to This ]
      Dude. You have so many comments here (with good reason, I might add) that what I have to say has probably been said already (but I haven't read any of the comments).

    This piece just kicked my ass. Seriously. Not many poems do that to me. But this one did. And now I have a sore ass. Ouch. Haha.

    Ok, onto the poem. I love how you have the theme of the Brooklyn Bridge interspersed with your own personal life. It gives it more than one focus; yet it melds together flawlessly.

    This stanza really brought me to my knees -

    'bet I could take all my guilt
    and fit it into a cardboard box

    for the stupid [censored] I used to say to sara
    and the way I neglected mama
    all the days wasted watching tv
    or chatting online
    and nights suffocating in whiskey and cocaine
    the way I treated people on my way up
    the way I treated people on the way down
    telling those girls I wasnít married
    before I [censored]ed them
    all the lies told to God and myself'

    - It's just.... so fuc.king truthful and bare and blunt and you know, I'm running out of things to say now. It just really spoke to me. I love dirty insights like this - it shows me that I am not the only one harbouring regrets and deeply buried hurt. Well, that came out wrong - of course everyone has those feelings locked away somewhere. You showed this to me and conveyed it so wonderfully.

    Man, you must get sick of unending praise. But that's really all I have for it. And you must know by now that this is going on my fav's list.

    I've seen your name around but never really checked out your pieces. I'm really sorry I haven't done so earlier. But I'm definitely glad I read this one of yours.

    So yea, I'll be around more often, methinks.

    Oh, just a little nitpick. Capitalizations of Brooklyn Bridge, July, Sara and perhaps Mama? I just noticed you capped Washington Roebling so I thought that it would be appropriate to do so. But that's just me being an anally retentive freak. I'm like that when it comes to the visual side of things, so please forgive me lol.

    Added afterthought: I like how you listed your possessions. And the Jack Kerouac intro fits in perfectly. Oh, and of course - all the little details about the workmanship that went into the bridge - fantastic!

    Have I rambled on enough? I think I'll go now and reread this when I have more time on my hands.

    Nice reading your stuff, it's so good seeing something totally original and captivating.

    Peace,

    Jase
    | Posted on 2005-09-15 00:00:00 | by alteredlife | [ Reply to This ]
      Well the title caught my eye. I used to live in Brooklyn. I go to school now near the Manhattan side of the bridge. And, I've walked that bridge with the most important person of my life. We almost died while trying to get on the pedestrian walkway. Or rather, I almost died, and he saved me.

    This inspired me to write my own poem about the bridge. hehe, Thank you. I wonder if you're really looking for anymore comments on the poem itself. Look at all those youve got already. lol My suggestions would just be useless and repetitive.

    Next time I walk the bridge, I bet I'll think of your write.

    =] Thanks for the interesting read.

    -Farrah
    | Posted on 2005-07-26 00:00:00 | by babixpeaches | [ Reply to This ]
      Damn it took me along time to scroll all the way down here just so I can be on top after I submit this. Anyway about your poem of course. Well this review is one more thing you can put into that box. There are things I like, but I'll start with my dislikes. "see, if you ascend too quickly" I realize that see, was a set up for the later rhyme with knees, but I think it read better with out it.
    "
    bet I could take all my guilt
    and fit it into a cardboard box

    for the stupid [censored] I used to say to sara
    and the way I neglected mama
    all the days wasted watching tv
    or chatting online
    and nights suffocating in whiskey and cocaine
    the way I treated people on my way up
    the way I treated people on the way down
    telling those girls I wasnít married
    before I [censored]ed them
    all the lies told to God and myself" I like this stanza, but the trasiton back to the bridge was a bit bumpy. I've never been a fan of beatnick poetry, but there are still somethings here I enjoyed. I guess I like the rhyme you use even though It's sprase and the back and forth nature as if thinking; tangents. Anyway thanks for all you help on the site just wanted to say goodbye. peace
    | Posted on 2005-04-21 00:00:00 | by shaman | [ Reply to This ]
      usually i leave long messages, but usually i find something, anythign to crtique in order to give the comment weight and worth. this time i am at a complete and utter loss. i suppose the pathetic word woh no longer has any meaning to you but its about all i can say, well know i can think of lots ot sya but hwen i first started this i was really tired. your poem is slowly waking em up.

    firstly, the poem is sustained for ahuge lenght but maintains its quailty and stimulates the reader to the very (very) last word. that is amazing in itself. i am in awe. and i know someoen else foudn the matter of fact tone off putting, but its what attracted em to the poem. i couldnt read a 'flowery' poem fo this lenght. the mater of fact tone is brillaint and hugely appro[iate to the poem. the thing that relaly hooked me was what could someoen possibly have to sya which involves discussing a bridge.

    the bridge thread in the poem is a veyr strong idea upon which to hang your poem, the brdge gives your poem a very secure structure. you different musings on live are all effortlessly teid back together becuase of the thread. i love the list in the middle of the poem, beucase the lsit in itself could be a poem, it also create your world. you invite the reader in and settle them. i know im back to lenght of the pioem again but the thign is thta you make the reader comfortable and htne enable them to read ht epoem. thats not to say i wasnt provoked by any parts of the poem, i was. infact just when i thought this poem wouldnt really impact upon me it did-

    all the days wasted watching tv
    or chatting online

    ok these are probably not the usual lines which get to peop[le but these lines really hit hme forme. its all baout amkign a conection and htese echos my thoughts of late. but im nto about to tangent into that.

    my absolute favourite partt of this poem was

    where virgin gusts cut sharp waves

    i just loved this line. its so visceral and i can feel the wind and somehow see the gustr see hwo the effect the scene at least. this si a masterpiece, though you've all ready heard this all before. well done good job and the rest are just pathetic, its so much more
    harri
    | Posted on 2005-08-14 00:00:00 | by harri | [ Reply to This ]
      Dunno how I missed this. This is such a profound piece from you. What an epic (and I do mean that in the best way)! You give the reader insight into the depths of his soul and the bridge is a terrific metaphor for his condition. I could go into a lot of psychological or literary examination but everyone else has already done that it looks like, so I wonít. The sad, regretful tone of it really hit me in the gut. His plight is universal and touching, even though he takes the blame for bringing it on himself. Best thing Iíve ever read from you, and Iíve read some darn good stuff.

    Peace,

    Joey
    | Posted on 2005-08-15 00:00:00 | by joeyalphabet | [ Reply to This ]
      You know, DnD . . . I didn't know you had it in you? I mean, I can say without any equivocation whatsoever, beyond a shadow of a doubt, this is the best poem I've read in years, here, there, or anywhere, by anyone, famous or unknown, tall, short, fat, hairy, drunk or sober. I laughed my a s s off reading it, for its unbridled honesty and self-deprecating and uncompromising view of the Self. The whole concept of the bridge is brilliant, how you go back to it after some potent revelation, it just struck a cord with me and I actually laughed with the joy of this dark, crazy humor . . . oh, goodness! What a gem! I'm not given to rave reviews but I'm dancing a jig and the audacity of this poem, the guts, the shuck and jive, the IN YOUR FACE of it and raw BOLD splendor of it all. I don't give a damn what it says about good comments, bad comments, the site admin can ban my a s s. I'll just pack my s h i t in my own little cardboard box (actually, I'll need about a hundred) and call myself a cab! Move on down across that bridge to www.notquitesoeliteskills.com and see what there is to see. I'm making this one of my favs, the second DnD in my collection, but that hardly does it justice. Ah, my brother, I'm so bursting with pride for you I can't contain myself.

    Gonna go howl out the window til my throat hurts.
    | Posted on 2005-04-05 00:00:00 | by Vancrown | [ Reply to This ]
      Its hard to say its an enjoyable read, when your seeing a sad life being self-polluted.

    I will say it was well written and a very interesting read, with some honest views on your personal thought process.

    My fav part was you listing all your belongings as though they didn't have a real meaning to your life,actually being a reflection of itself.

    The scatter-brain tone added so much to piece, like someone who does drugs and sit and stares at things for hours pondering life,yet at the same wasting it.

    Very good write
    | Posted on 2005-04-04 00:00:00 | by edthepoet | [ Reply to This ]
      Damn, I had to cut and paste the poem into the comment box before I could start commenting. The length of the messages alone on this is incredible. You generated such profound interest in an area of poetry difficult to master; long stuff.
    This has captured the attention of such a varied base. Way ta go!

    Okay, the first thing that jolted me and continued to do so every time I read was
    "picturing myself Washington Roebling"
    I would consider an "as" after "myself".
    And a comma after "nervous system"?

    I've no problem with S2... I understand the sort of confessional tone this has but think that some parts are just unnecessary in S3.
    "it appears from here that a lot of cars cross it."
    that really doesn't have anything to do with the next line, and you've already given your reader some pub-quiz facts and building specs. While I enjoy reading I want to get to the point, and dig into the poem... ths randomness of information is distracting.
    On the business line I would ask you to specify what side of the river, north, south? maybe something descriptive of brooklyn, too... you need to link this, along with the bridge, to your theme. Small details like that, I think help "cement" the piece.

    I liked the list of your belongings. Give a rough edge... You need a colon rather than the ellipses because it is a list and not an unfinished sentence.

    "Out there" is really bland and boring. The type of description that's wasting space you could use to paint your landscape.
    (I once read, by Paula Danziger, lol, that writers are the type of people who never get bored of watching and wondering about strangers' lives. Or words to that effect :P)

    I enjoyed the juxtaposition of the negative "I don't celebrate anniversaries" with "on good days". It's that bittersweet vibe we talked about before, always some sadness with the light.

    The following stanza that mentions the harbour and Lady Liberty is a good one, I think. Subtle imagery like that is an example of the description I blethered on about.

    And when we come to the guilt... Hmmm. I like the little riddle there; are you belongings significant of your vices, or is your guilt something else, but controllable enough to box in...?

    Then we are enlightened, but you go on to confuse me even more... and impress me. Because the moment of truth we just experienced ends with a confession of denial...
    and then sharply veers off into random facts.
    A subtle ploy and pleasing...

    The feeling generated here is that I kind of think the narrator has latched on to that steadfast image of the bridge as a sort of ...lucky charm. Or a place like the one you mentioned in MSG... somewhere to retreat from the real world. This guy would be like the opposite, retreating from his head, and escaping into the visions of a busy world.
    World watching is very therapeutic.

    The mention of a loss of oxygen of course brings me to the feel of suffocation. Seeing someone as blank or unyielding is a very sombre indication of the relationship at the time. A grey time, the colour in which this poem's cast. Grey, heavy clouds. But the narrator still admits that what they saw was an illusion.
    It's easy to reconsider in hindsight.

    The final stanza is so drastic, dangerous almost. Where would you go, and what would you see, what would you do, and when? All these questions flood my brain. This poem is quite stimulating, it encourages me to think and draw my own conclusions. I found the idea of leaving the box on the bridge so very sad though!
    And it tied up with my ideas, which was great... the ending was good, a strong and rather positive sentiment, I think.

    Enjoyed this
    Lea
    | Posted on 2005-04-02 00:00:00 | by Learah | [ Reply to This ]
      i'd like to apologize, first off, because i've been the one, coming to read this every day since you posted it and never commented; it's hard to find time to organize what you want to say when it's important without seeming foolish. it's strange and comforting, the tone you establish from the beginning with the Kerouac quote. i think it helps me swallow the wisdom that our hero dishes out in an off the cuff manner, though he may see himself as no wise man. i like how he's worldly but never crosses the brooklyn bridge, as all his business doesn't require a bridge to cross. i like how he knows the answers to his problems and chooses his own path anyway (sorta like what my mom is constantly telling me). i feel as if perhaps he's talking to me, though there are times where this feels more like an inner monologue, and the back and forth between the direction of his speech is nice. i think all good writers have issues with their mothers, btw.

    he never goes anywhere, not even to take that cab ride, he's just thinking about all of this, but i feel as if he did take a step in another direction, if that makes any sense. the way the lines are broken up and the word choice is spot on and if there ever was regret tinged with humanity put to paper, this is it. lovely but lonely, wonderful but a waste of precious time, that's what this reads like. extremely good piece, thanks for sharing.

    ~Blue
    | Posted on 2005-03-31 00:00:00 | by blueorchids | [ Reply to This ]
      That piece had so many things that got me some way I don'[t know where to begin or if I even should -I'm kinda trippin[not literaly but on this and I am not exactly sure why just yet. Anyway are you from New York?-I am from Manhattan[Inwood] so one particular thing that I really thought you could not have said better was
    a loss of oxygen can do funny things to the mind,
    make you see things that maybe arenít there.
    I saw sara as a window,
    she saw me as a locked door;
    she managed to find another way out.
    I found out that there are some things
    that just wonít fit in a cardboard box
    [this whole stanza is great ...really trrully[sound familiar-lol] but it is and it says alot. mEvery time I thought you were going a certain way you turned it which I'm seeing you tend to do[I think I do that as well] Anyway I can't believe I am saying this but you do it much better..Really trully,![lol]BTW I got a friend of mine who does some kind of schmmooze job for a publishing company talk his company into publishing a book for me. It's very limited[100pgs,tops] and I pay 5.00 a book and we print I think he said200 o0r maybe 5oo I don't recall right now but what a trip. It's kind of a lot more work than I thought. I was thinking how hard could it be to throw all my best poems togeether edit them and print them withj some art work and a theme?>?"??? yeah right it's freaking difficult especially with me a s the writer- I pity the one who I find to actually do this for me the 2nd time. I type like retard anyway I'll tell you more later and this is going as a FAV btw. For reasons I am just not able to tell yet but there is something special about this one Excedllent work David
    L A M E M A N S T E R M S
    | Posted on 2005-03-30 00:00:00 | by LameMansTerms | [ Reply to This ]
      I read gilrinthephoto's piece by this title. It was excellent and this one is too. Just by this slice of life we see a great deal about this man who would take a cab ride to where ever..until the money runs out. But I'm thinking where are sara and mom now, did I miss their fate in the poem somewhere. I like how you made this man relatable, 3 books of poetry and a laptop, is he in fact a contemporary poet whose fame has not yet reached our awareness? He might be you Dave at some point in your life. Great job, I likey.
    peace and love,
    Nan
    | Posted on 2005-03-29 00:00:00 | by nansofast | [ Reply to This ]
      The Box in Brooklyn, or The Life and Death of an (un)caged animal.
    The self loathing is thick here, and the way you run back and forth through the memories of a dysfunctional misfit are pretty trick. In the end I assume the box stays in the middle of the bridge because he never made it to the other side either. The air is all pretty bad above the river, on both ends of the cables.
    Tell me why you're writing a screen play again.
    D.
    | Posted on 2005-03-29 00:00:00 | by Sandburg | [ Reply to This ]
      Well, I just read Alia's comment and I agree with her translation of this piece. It's really good and I don't know why it took me so long to read it! :( Sry bout that. A very enjoyable read. If someone told me to write about something I would have no idea where to start. You created a whole life around a bridge, box, and a characters life. They all relate really well with each other which is great. :) I don't really know what else to say being as I didn't see anything wrong or out of place. Great job!
    -blt
    | Posted on 2005-03-28 00:00:00 | by borderlinetears | [ Reply to This ]
      This has a nice dramatic feel to it...I saw Danshilton's comparisons so I'll throw one in too. It reminds me of Spalding Gray (RIP). Kind of juxtaposing real time and imagination into a compelling telling.

    I used to live in Brooklyn. That bridge always seemed so long. It reminded me of how far I was from the heart of the city...seemed like a bridge that if I could cross, I'd have made it. Turns out it was just a bridge...just another in a long line of others.

    Anyway. I like the breath/air images. movement etc...this was nice...has a good "voice" to it.
    | Posted on 2005-03-21 00:00:00 | by marysunshine | [ Reply to This ]
      You're right. I'll use lack of sleep as my excuse. I sprained my ankle going to get The Gtreat Bridge by David McCullough. WWWAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I never claimed to be infallible or in fall able. God, I'm not even punny anymore.
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by cuddledumplin | [ Reply to This ]
      I don't know where to start here, so perhaps -the beginning would be a perfect place.

    First off, I liked the title, it is a hook, - a puzzle for the reader to work through, and you keep this image going throughout,-both the box he would stash his few treasures in, and the one he lives in,and even more, the intangible, invisible one he has built around his own life .
    I often don't like first-person writes, but this is necessary here in order for this plaintive voice to be credible; right off then , your "man-in-a-box" paints an artless, honest self portrait of a lonely, melancholy soul, unhappy with his "piece of sh*t appartment", and feeling oppressed.

    I liked the single. stand alone line "I know a little bit about being on knees". The space around it creates one of those long pauses , the silent blank moments between halting thoughts , whether mute or spoken aloud.
    The words are sufficiently cryptic. to mean different things to different people, and I think that makes it easier for people to relate to- the space, the words, then the space-and I think-"yeah, I know a little bit about that too, or maybe a lot,"-but whatever, it adds a wash of grey to the scene.
    I felt it was of course about pain, the pain of decompression syndrome, but being on your knees is also an allusion to prayer, so the image is doubly meaningful, suggesting pain , anguish , and some serious soul-searching and supplication to a higher power.

    One get the bends from diving, and then rising too quickly; ( although I don't think you necessarily had to point this out, it is another instance of the honest-as-it-happens stream of thoughts of the maninthebox.) so our guy has had a life of highs and lows. The diving would suggest a low period, then perhaps he maybe went too far, too fast, and lost sight of what's important on his surge to the top.He seems to be missing his mother, perhaps she died, or they are estranged by other circumstances, and he speaks of an ended marriage to sara. All the while though, he is staring at the bridge.

    I liked the way his mood changes when he focuses on the other side of the bridge. He speaks lyrically rather than in bar-room vernacular, and his thoughts seem to take wing and the day dreaming is focused on hopeful possibilities rather than on the dreary wallowing in self-pity and regret for the past.

    "on good days, I stare out beyond the bridge
    where virgin gusts cut sharp waves
    out of time-traveled ocean.
    reminders of liberty
    lead to memories un-liberated;
    ones that could use some settin' free "

    But then he snaps out of that reverie and is in the box again, recalling and voicing regrets at, the way he treated the women in his life, the booze and the coke.

    The bridge symbolism is always in the foreground here, and again when you itemize the trivial facts about it, it reveals more about the man, through his thought process. He again shifts mood as he thinks about "the scope of everything on the other side, that stretches on forever",-two of my favorite lines follow this more mellow poetic train of thought-

    "I saw sara as a window,
    she saw me as a locked door
    "

    -and then he thinks about the box again, and sinks back down to the depressed, rough speech that always follows thoughts about the box. This is a very good device, the yo-yoing between the slightly uplifted side and the grey leaden side, it complements the theme of the bends, and creates empathy for this guy, -he is like a caged wild bird, - we want him to be free, -now that he has the desire to be free.

    I thought the things he valued enough to pack into his box were interesting, revealing a little more about his pain.I thought it was strange he would put in a TV control, -but no TV, he puts in the damn fan, the one thing he remembers Mama advising him on, two items that reminders of Sara, the whiskey (he doesn't want to give up everything yet, and 3 poetry books, -all these things are comforting to him, -but he includes the laptop and cell phone. Not your average hermit then, but rather that tells me he wants to communicate with others, get back into civilization and get back to being happy and satisfied with life.

    I liked the spacing of the last two lines, for the same reasons as mentioned earlier. We can draw one of two conclusions then, the space could be there because he is going to go on and on indefinitely in this fashion, forver isolated by his own device from love, life and relationships with others, -or he is going to pack up and take that cab to the bridge. I like that too, where we can write the rest ourselves.

    This was a long read, but there was enough variety in thought , form and content to compel one to read on,- and it has to be read more than once to really get into all the nuances and possibilities. I think you did an awesome job of painting this man's character, his obsession and anxiety, loneliness and helplessness in the face of his own self-destruction. It could be an introduction to a short story, or continuing long poem.
    Well done. I really like it
    Sally
    | Posted on 2005-03-23 00:00:00 | by Silverdog | [ Reply to This ]
      L-O-V-E-L-Y!

    i adored this piece. though the length is scary upon first glances, it did not feel long. It was an easy read and flowed so well. It did have a prose feel but that was part of the charm.

    the comparrisons of the bridge and his life were incredible. I like the line:

    "all my business takes place on this side"
    now if you'd want to compare with his life, it could be stating that up to this point he has followed the same route and he is coming to the bridge, changing for the better, to be able to finally "breathe". now im most surely way off, but that was my take on it. leaving behind the box-o-stuff and realizing the important things... so very nice. again beautiful read!
    -Nikki
    | Posted on 2005-03-22 00:00:00 | by stolie77 | [ Reply to This ]
      Wow, after all those comments, there's really not much to say. Other then to tell you how much I enjoyed reading this poetry/prose piece.
    I enjoyed reading about all his thoughts and rememberances, but it was always about the bridge. You never let go of that. This writing is extremely intense throughout, and even though long, it held my interest entirely. Great job, excellent.
    Carol
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by wannabe1 | [ Reply to This ]
      First of all I loved this a lot. Especially how you would fit everything valuable in alittle box.. and than putting on the bridge. I love this write very intense.. It seems to me this person has a lot of regret and pain... that person have a lot of guilt most of all. But sometimes you have to put up with the guilt or try to ask for forgiveness. It seems to me, that person just wanted to get out of there... Yes to breathe.. But really do you mean ignore that persons feelings.. Some parts I thought were really sad.. and made me almost crying.. But some parts I got twisted up.. Like that for instance.. That person had a lot of things going on there. Yes that would cause guilt.. I am just wondering what you meant by leaving... cause the person's past didn't sound too great..

    for the stupid [censored] I used to say to sara
    and the way I neglected mama
    all the days wasted watching tv
    or chatting online
    and nights suffocating in whiskey and cocaine
    the way I treated people on my way up
    the way I treated people on the way down
    telling those girls I wasnít married
    before I [censored]ed them
    all the lies told to God and myself

    Maybe you want to clear that situation that I had a hard time figuring out..
    thanks

    Was this suppose to be some sort of play.. Cause it would make one.. And if it ever becomes a play.. Or you ever decide to get it published or put it on.. I would definately wanna see it or have a copy..lol

    well this was a really elaborate write.

    stephanie
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by XxStephyxX04 | [ Reply to This ]
      Nice as always. A little bit prosey and very narative. Like listening to Leonard Cohen swooning as if in love while telling how 5h!t life is. Could make good music if you posted it to him, heh, heh! Why do all Americans seem to be drinking "whiskey", haven't you heard of beer and wine? Maybe it has something to do with the poetic types frequenting these virtual meeting places. Anyhow, it was enjoyable enough. Cheese and wine next time at my place. Just make sure to take it in moderation, unlike "whiskey" it leaves terrible stains when hurled. Aaagh, getting a bit graphic here in the details. Cheers, pass the fruit salts will you?
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by Lelik | [ Reply to This ]
      wow. that was pretty intense. sometimes guilt is difficult to expel especially after it's built up over time. I definitely like the bridge and the box as prominent parts of the poem. and fitting all your stuff in the box and leaving it on the bridge. this was an astounding poem of feelings, frustration and imagery. but you've probably heard that already.
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by sierramuse8 | [ Reply to This ]
      ok i had just finished writing your comment and was just about to hit post... and i lost it.
    i hate this computer.
    so i will try to start again and hope to god i remember what i wrote (although i did ramble a lot so maybe that's a blessing in disguise for you)

    ok.. when i started reading.. the very matter of fact tone in the first stanza threw me off. i had to go back and read it again.. but then as i got deeper into the poem.. it all seemed to fall into place. the tone fits perfectly with the character.. because he has something of an 'everyman' quality to him..

    i also noticed that in certain places you tend to switch topics quite suddenly. the way i see it.. this fits in the 'soul searching' or 'confessional' tone of the poem.. where in a situation like this a person's train of thought will be anything but organised (kinda like this comment..) so the sudden switch to 'bet i could take everything of value that i own/and fit into a cardboard box' from the facts about the bridge.. it gives this impression of a confused mind.. of someone who thinks too much no matter what they do.. but at the same time it does make the poem just that little bit more difficult to read..

    i was curious about your choice not to capitalise in the poem.. the way i interpreted it was that it gave the whole poem an understated feel.. as though 'he' wants to give less importance to his words.. although they are anything but unimportant.

    i love the inventory of the cardboard box along with the little facts and figures in the poem... makes you think.. is that all life comes down to? and the line 'she always said not to wear it Ďcept for special occasions' says so much about the relationship between the narrator and sara.. it's another one of those moments where you give a hint or suggestion at the nature of the relationship without spoonfeeding.. and for some reason it also seems to hint at a sense of regret.. (the kinds of things she used to tell him to do .. and that he maybe didnt always do?)

    there's something affecting about the intense 'honesty' of the poem.. where this man seems to be baring his entire life (and the saddest part is that it can all fix into a cardboard box)... the sense of regret that seems to permeate his words without every saying it outright.

    the way that i see this is.. epic journal poetry. there seems to be this 'grand' story between the lines.. but grand not in the sense that we have become accustomed to reading.. rather grand in the sense of its intensity and honesty. grand in the sense of these realisations..

    and i dont think this comment even begins to touch upon the things that matter with this poem.. this is just the tip of the iceberg.. and i know i'll be coming back to this poem again.
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by girlinthephoto | [ Reply to This ]
      David,

    You did it with this one. I have spent all my time on this site looking for a poem that could make me cry, and YOU did it. I am kind of at a loss at the moment, so I will just tell you what happened as I read.

    I see a young man, who looks much older: stained white undershirt, sitting at a small table in a smaller apartment, cigarette in hand, bottle on the table (not drinking it, just "lookin" at it), along with a little dusty fan that is on its last leg. He looks out the window as he speaks, unaware that anyone is listening.

    I loved what you did with the historical trivia bursting in at intervals. It makes it seem so matter-of-fact and monotone, as if there is nothing left for him to feel. In fact, I think it is the lack of "visible" emotion that made this piece so emotional for me.

    I could go on for days about this one, but instead I will just point to the three things that stood out the most to me.

    "and nights suffocating in whiskey and cocaine
    the way I treated people on my way up
    the way I treated people on the way down
    telling those girls I wasnít married
    before I [censored]ed them
    all the lies told to God and myself"
    This shows a man who feels he is beyond redemption and I think it is the part that first got the tears coming. Imagining a life in which you cannot find forgiveness in yourself, and cannot ask for forgiveness from God, that's about as low as one can get.

    "I saw sara as a window,
    she saw me as a locked door;
    she managed to find another way out."
    This is the only true reflection into his failed relationship, but it is more than enough to make the reader understand. She was clear, bright, open and let the light in. He made a way to shut the world out. That happens so often.

    "I just want to go someplace where I can breathe"
    This was an beautiful and graceful ending. You validated your metaphor. Sweltering heat, stale air, and lack of oxygen can make it hard to breathe, but not nearly as hard as suffering in self loathing can make it.

    This is a fave, possibly THE fave.

    Joye
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by pinurplepassion | [ Reply to This ]
      This feels to me like the start to a great play. I love the "common english" and "slangy" feel of the verbiage, and the leaps between seemingly disjointed topics.

    Yeah, this was long, but I didn't feel bored or get the urge to jump ahead as I do on a lot of long writes. The line lengths were very good, and the colloquialism useful, for making the reader not feel flooded.

    Personally (although some of the comments I've skimmed seem to indicate otherwise), I loved the interjections that add historical fact to the poem. I just felt like this was a character speaking "stream of conciousness" about life and the bridge... with each symbolizing each other. Well done.

    The only part that felt superfluous was the actual list of stuff that you had... but I don't think that section would be as good without it, so I'm torn... it just feels extraneous.

    All in all, great write. I enjoyed it.
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by jer | [ Reply to This ]
      Hi David,
    You take several strands and weave them into a poem - the bridge you look out at each day as a way out to other places, the decompression sickness you suffer after going to deep into the muck of the Hudson River and the personal problems of your own life and lastly the cardboard box of [censored]. I have a feeling that the last idea - the cardboard box one deserves a poem of its own. it's a great idea in its own right, but possibly detracts from the bridge thing. There was sufficient scope for your personal troubles to be compared to the muck in the caissons of the bridge. The only way to bring all the elements together was the one you chose to walked to the centre of the bridge and leave the box there, but I would have thrown the bloody thing in. Otherwise, I stick to my opinion that there are in fact two good poems here each a bit cramped for space.
    I liked the refrain effect of returning from the intensity of your emotions to the documentary of building the bridge - it was good counterpoint. Your poem felt like a blend of a lot of Simon and Garfunkle without the lyrics, but then if New York is the stimulus, I should expect to see a painting with the same background. I've just read it again, and I still don't like that box. I can see your poem as "The Decompression Blues" with all the lovely potential of coming up for air, but suffering the consequences of your sojourn in the pit.
    Arthur
    | Posted on 2005-03-20 00:00:00 | by hanuman | [ Reply to This ]
      Well, this is interesting. I used to have this obsession with the bridges (esp. The Brooklin Bridge) for some reason (I was a profoudly weird kid, and I'd sit for hours reading about stuff like that), so I like the topic.

    I've often felt like I had the bends long before the Radiohead cd came out; I even wrote a horrid poem called The Bends.

    For some odd reason, that makes me think of my old apartment in Atlanta. It didn't have air conditioning, and needless to say, it was incredibly hot. I spent most of the summer on the streets or on the fire escape.

    letís see...
    books of poetry (3)
    bottle of whiskey
    laptop
    cell phone
    wedding ring
    oscillating fan
    tv remote control
    wristwatch (not the one I wear, but the nice one sara bought me for christmas;
    she always said not to wear it Ďcept for special occasions)

    I like how you contrasted that with the stuff it took to make the bridge.

    on good days, I stare out beyond the bridge
    where virgin gusts cut sharp waves
    out of time-traveled ocean.
    reminders of liberty
    lead to memories un-liberated;
    ones that could use some settin' free

    That reminds me of how John Roebling (Washington's father) had to watch the building of the bridge from his window after he got the bends. Instead, your narrator watches life go on in the outside world with no real symbol of progress.

    bet I could take all my guilt
    and fit it into a cardboard box

    for the stupid [censored] I used to say to sara
    and the way I neglected mama
    all the days wasted watching tv
    or chatting online
    and nights suffocating in whiskey and cocaine
    the way I treated people on my way up
    the way I treated people on the way down
    telling those girls I wasnít married
    before I [censored]ed them
    all the lies told to God and myself

    I read that itís 6,016 feet long
    but to me itís not so much
    about the structure itself as it is
    the scope of everything on the other side,
    that stretches on forever

    I like how your guilt is small and the bridge is vast. I don't have much about which I feel guilty, but when I feel guilty it is overwhelming. If my guilt would fit in a shoebox it would be denser than a black hole.

    Iím thinkin 'bout calling a cab,
    giving him all my money
    and riding until the meter runs out...
    Iíll take my box of [censored] with me
    and leave it on the middle of the bridge

    That's a good idea. I think we all need to unburdern ourselves of bad karma perioically.
    | Posted on 2005-03-19 00:00:00 | by cuddledumplin | [ Reply to This ]
      ok. i have to admit that at first i didn't give this piece any thought/credit. but after reading it as a MONOLOGUE (sp?) and not a POEM then i saw the genius in it. i like it because it's very industrial-esque without having a pervading sense of gloom. it conveys a sort of worn-out feeling. a guy sits in his apartment while a narrator reads in a deep voice the above incantation. just the idea of leaving a box of all your belongings (and this man has precious few of them) on this bridge (built up into a legend, something with history). the story about this girl sara is a bit weak, but that's ok because the point is not to tell the whole story but to convey what this guy is actually thinking. in a proper film this could be towards the beginning (possibly after some other event in another part of town, across the bridge) and the sotry would go from there, revealing more of the back story. anyway i think this is good but mislabeled.
    | Posted on 2005-03-19 00:00:00 | by lukewarm | [ Reply to This ]
      Wow,
    I'm an actor, and as such I read this as a monologue to myself. It has a great style for such, and gets the point across very well. The only things I didn't like were when I read it the wrong way at parts... but that's me. Heh. Overall, a very modern and well iterated piece. The casual style is great, and I'll think of it if I have to perform a monologue sometime.
    I'm rating it a 5.

    -Lamoni
    | Posted on 2005-03-19 00:00:00 | by Lamoni | [ Reply to This ]
      hey mate,
    well it certainly look like you two have been busy.

    and this is a mother-fu-cker of a piece
    [in terms of length].

    i really dont know what i want to say.
    i can tell you that i could write a 1,000 words, but i dont really know where to start.
    i am pretty sick of rights and wrongs,
    because there are none.
    i am sick of goods and bads,
    because that does not exist outside the parameters of perception.

    i dont want to rip it to shreds.
    who the fu-ck am i to do that?
    i will tell you:
    no one.
    no on1
    no 1.

    so, im gonna put some dirty music on because this piece seems 'dirty,' and give it the attention it deserves.
    so orbital 'snivilisationí it is.
    crude and industrial.
    and i love it.

    i think you have captured the essence of dirty in this piece.
    i think it was what you were going for, so job done.
    nice on1e.
    your use of the colloquial reflects this, and whether or not it is to preference, it is what you wanted to achieve.
    and you did.
    there is a down to earth guy so down to earth he is nearly in the ground.
    he is,,,
    dun dun dun,
    in 'the box in brooklyn.'

    written in the style of the character, you shift well in your narrative from your earlier pieces.
    showing skills you have;

    [crash and carry just came on.
    this speaks of underground new york clubs and drugs and hard dancing
    and fu-cking
    and fighting]

    but this is an exercise and it reads like such.
    and that is not to judge, but to see what it is.
    you can tell when something is from experience and when something is from a word on a page.

    you have filled this piece out.
    i am trying to look at this and look at your reasoning, because that is the least you deserve...
    so you want to paint a picture.
    you want to paint a character.
    you want to evoke a mood.
    a scene.

    have you given us far too much 'information?

    'see, if you ascend too quickly
    the decompression will strike you in the nervous system'
    should you have to explain what the bends is?
    radiohead have already made it a pretty familiar phenomenon.

    i totally relate to what you are saying.
    the feeling that is.
    and i see that you may have wanted to use this to show your character to be someone who thinks he knows more than he does, or someone who wants to grab us and hold onto us and talk to us because he has no friends and no life...

    is the next part needed?

    'they say roughly 27 people died building the bridge
    and it took about 14 years to fill out
    nearly 15,000 tons of stone and wire.
    it appears from here that a lot of cars cross it.'
    and
    'I read that itís 6,016 feet long
    but to me itís not so much
    about the structure itself as it is
    the scope of everything on the other side,'
    perhaps?
    perhaps your character is so bored that he finds out these useless facts just to pass his time.
    but perhaps all this just bulks out your piece a little too much.

    but you are doing new things.
    the change is refreshing.

    you have repeats '[censored],' three times.
    or more.
    perhaps he says '[censored],' a lot.
    perhaps he says other words and poetically you could vary it.

    'I just want to go someplace where I can breath,'
    you need an 'e' at the end of this line, i think.

    could the following line:
    'maybe somebody else can find some use of it,'
    be joined on the end of the previous stanza as such:
    'Iím thinkin 'bout calling a cab,
    giving him all my money
    and riding until the meter runs out...
    Iíll take my box of [censored] with me
    and leave it on the middle of the bridge,
    maybe somebody else can find some use of it'

    for the sake of the dramatic effect of the last line?

    could you remove let's see? from this following section?
    'letís see...
    books of poetry (3)
    bottle of whiskey
    laptop
    cell phone
    wedding ring
    oscillating fan
    tv remote control
    wristwatch (not the one I wear, but the nice one sara bought me for christmas;
    she always said not to wear it Ďcept for special occasions)'
    perhaps it is not needed.
    perhaps you are using enough of the colloquial.

    i like the list and the effect it has in the piece and the variety it adds.
    but my opinion is not of any consequence..
    at all.

    what's that?

    [i will have to put paranoid android on now, i wanted to resist but there is so much of that in this one way or another]

    your piece is cut up and stuck back together.
    this could be appropriate to the character; back referencing the bends
    and past stories of sex and emptiness
    and sarah

    kill me sarah, kill me again with love.

    there is a lot of looking out and looking over and the consequent introspection.
    heard a 1,000 times.
    but no reason for 1,001.

    the details are nice.
    though my perception of nice means nothing to anyone else.
    details are important.
    detailing is important.
    you can tell a story,
    you know what you are doing,
    with,
    for example,
    the following:
    'the air in july is stifling .
    the oscillating fan on the table
    doesnít oscillate on me often enough.
    mama used to tell me if you donít circulate the air
    itíll leave a stench through the whole place.
    I figure, hell, I never took much of her advice
    so I might as well try this one.'

    [you have too much spare time.]

    from a great height.

    it might be an oversight to confuse your poetic voice with the voice you are creating for your character.
    this could be an example:
    your character would say:
    mama used to tell me if you donít circulate the air
    itíll leave a stench through the whole place.
    I figure, hell, I never took much of her advice
    so I might as well try this one,'
    your character would not say:
    'or chatting online
    and nights suffocating in whiskey and cocaine'
    if you want to change voice, which i think you do not, we should know where and when,
    perhaps.

    using a character in a '[poem]' could be an effective tool.


    and that is it.
    im sorry that i could not be of any direct help.
    but its your bad boy,
    and not mine.

    take care
    you dont remember
    my name.
    on1eday.co.uk

    well i guess he does.
    | Posted on 2005-03-19 00:00:00 | by on1eday.co.uk | [ Reply to This ]


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