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Featured Guest Poet Lisa Baker


Still Mist
Avoid my languished bare skin
Spray lies of love at the moon
pound your breast and chant beneath weak heave
picture sleeping by symphonic lake
in spring
for tiny moments
screaming music
do you ache?
For here is essential
(life and death)
Tell me friend
always means eternity
Doesn't it?
Place you and me nearer to there
Smooth away the past
and run thru OUR storm
I Dream
an elaborate life
and worship you
touch me and recall
She needs for we

November, 2001

Lisa Baker's Questions:

I am uncertain as to what type of inquiries are often made in a writing forum such as this, but I'll give it a sincere shot.

I dont know if this is the right platform to voice personal insecurities or critical concerns.

I am most concerned with the basic fundamental structure: is it a solid concept, is the structure sound and consistent?

Is it fluid? Does it have rythm?

Are the words brought together well enough to seemingly dance proudly before you with delliberate confidence, however bizarre or abstract, is the skin and the content an inarguable match?

Or is it a hogepodge of hit and miss ideas, one having nothing to do with the other -- a virtual cornacopia of fragmented rants and raves fused together by language manipulation?

Lisa, I like the passion of your poem, but it has some problematic areas. Please note that my comments are just my opinion and not to be taken as any ultimate voice of criticism. First, the form is a bit offputting to me - I don't liked "formed" or "concrete" poetry that takes some shape on the page unless that shape really adds to the poems itself. I've seen poems about clouds shaped like a cloud, for instance, but even those tend to be sentimental poems. This form seems just arbitrarily centered. The lack of a title leaves us with the "Still Mist" as a default title and I'm not sure if the whole poem directed at this one image can sustain that image (if indeed that was what you intended). It's not a very robust image to direct such strong passion towards. Near the end it seems as if the relationship betweeen skin and mist is a stand-in for a human relationship. That could work; after all, poems are metaphors, right? As for the music and dance, yes it does has strong rhythms, and might even work better if some lines were worked together. But the music and dance would still be there even if the poem was constructed with left margin. The last line is a bit mystical, and it goes right over my head (course, that may say more for my head than for the poem!). But for most of the poem you have two "characters": the mist and "me." Then in the last line you imply a "she" and I'm not sure if that works. I like the poem in its best places, lines like "Spray lies of love at the moon" and "picture sleeping by symphonic lake/in spring" and "I dream/an elaborate life". But the use of "Ache" and "eternal" and "worship" may be a little over-dramatic. And the parenthetical "(life and death)" fails to ignite. Write me and tell me more about how this poem began, for it speaks for more than itself. As for being the right forum, yes, I think it is. and you can voice anything you want, personal insecurities or critical concerns. Even "Rants and raves"!! Best to you. Larry
Larry Fontenot
USA - Fri Nov 23 08:58:28 2001

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