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Featured Guest Hugh Kingston

Soggy Newspapers

That man
there on the corner,
with the cane, and the slippers,
and the soggy newspapers,
he is lost

and he doesn't know where he is.

When a man is lost like that,
lost in his world
and in His world,
when a man is lost like that,
I know
that people everywhere
are crying,
because booze bottles break,
even in paper bags,
and because nickels are too heavy
for their own good.

It's a dangerous thing to ignore the rain coming straight down.
It can get you awfully wet awfully fast you know.

He will sleep tonight
in an alleyway
under blankets of soggy, .Newspaper sogginess at all time high!.

There are never new newspapers
in alleyways; only yesterday.s
with headlines predicting today.

There are never new newspapers
in alleyways; the past is always
more warm, always more not today.

October, 2002

Hugh Kingston's Questions:

1.Does the repition in the last two lines work?

2.what do you think of lines about booze bottles and nickels? Does it make sense what i'm trying to say?

3.I think the last line needs work. any suggestions?


This poem gives the old saying "Stuff Happens" a fresh approach, with the bottles breaking and heavy nickels. I think that really comes through well. The last line is trying to say something, but I get stuck on "more warm". Maybe using another word for warm?
Dana Pertermann
- Tue Oct 22 05:26:29 2002
I just read the poem. the images that stick are "soggy" and "past and present" the booze bottle and nickels are significant I just not sure the meaning as sunking yet. For me the repitition did not work at all. I will think about this one and get back to you David Perrings
David Perrings
CA USA - Fri Oct 25 13:04:43 2002
Images worked for me, as did the mood of desperate breeziness. Yes, I did get hung up on the ending, the last two stanzas. While I am a fan of repetition, and I think it could work here, the last stanza lost me a bit, especially *always more, not today*. Overall tho a solid piece.
il USA - Sat Oct 26 17:58:43 2002
On the subsequent readings, I think that repetition will work. It falls well on the ear--and the use of repetition tell me that this man is caught in the scenario repetitively. That works! But at the same time, it might be the poem's weakspot also, as overall, I'm not sure, though, that the ideas in the poem tell me anything new or add to my perspective of a stereotypical situation.
USA - Wed Nov 6 14:46:05 2002
Well,I didn't quite understand the part about the booze bottles breaking in paper bags ,unless you mean damage can never quite be concealed. The nickel however gets the idea across and sounds less ,well ,ornate.About the last line I guess you could do without the always that would make it more forceful. Thanks
Sreejita Deb
India - Sat Dec 21 09:25:43 2002
I'm not sure about the booze bottle and nickel lines. Why would the world cry if a "bum" breaks a bottle? Also, the second stanza, one line seems redundant. If someone is lost, he doesn't know where he is; so really you're repeating that three times. The last line is close but not quite but I don't have any direct suggestions there except--keep at it.
Janice M. McDonald
Canada - Sat Mar 8 13:08:52 2003
I like the poem- I especially like the second to last stanza. I would just axe the last stanza if I were you. I think it might be stronger that way. The lines about the nickels and the booze bottle don't do anything for me. Very perceptive, I think it's a fresh look at homelessness. Not sappy, good.
martha grover
USA - Sat Mar 22 20:21:43 2003
Typed 'poetry' in a search engine, found this site. This is the first poem I've read here, and I have to say, I'm impressed. The poem is easy on the mind allowing the reader to appreciate the subtleties within its lines. Minor Notes: Coming from England I don't understand the line counting 'Nickels.' Perhaps this is an American thing. In regards to the last stanza: it should be powerful - pull the poem together and all that - but its not. Do re-write it.
Ulysses Hero
England - Mon Apr 7 02:42:01 2003
Very good Kingston!!! Not normally my kind of poetry but I would not mind browsing some of your work. I think it was very smooth and agree that it was easy on the mind, though very provoking. Your work is visual, I like that. The only thing I might change is on the last sentence "not" to "than". Good job!
Big Lake, Ak USA - Thu Jun 26 23:39:21 2003

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