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by KnoxOverstreet 

Posted: 12 February 2005
Word Count: 60

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I love you
Your extraordinary courage
And capability
In the face of adversity
But when I bled our child

Into the toilet
To mix with piss
And Domestos
Your desire to fix things
Suffocated me like coal gas

Your presence a thick blanket
That lay
On my breath
Reminding me how my useless body
Took the life of a baby

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Account Closed at 17:40 on 12 February 2005  Report this post
Strong stuff, Knox. I can't comment on the poetry aspect but the second verse really hit me in the solar plexus. The toilet and bleach seemed so harsh, clinical in contrast to her feelings. Very astute too - what can the man do in this situation other than try to fix it?


KnoxOverstreet at 20:55 on 12 February 2005  Report this post
Thanks Elspeth. I can't say much about the poetic side of this either, not being much of a poet an all, but the idea for this was simply that in some emotionally fraught situations women are often far more robust than would traditionally be thought, and in a 21st century postmodern world the male role can be confusing. It's one of many I wrote over the past few months around the subject of pregnancy and birth (which seems to be a popular topic these days) as an excuse for not getting on with writing other things.


joanie at 17:08 on 13 February 2005  Report this post
Hi Julian, I think you're right - the man's role is very difficult these days!

I don't mean to be flippant in any way, but this made me think of 'Only Fools and Horses' when Del got the lift stuck on purpose just so that he could make Rodney talk about losing their baby. Very poignant.

This is very powerful and moving.


SmithBrowne at 18:11 on 04 April 2005  Report this post

Like the others, I agree that this is very powerful, and painful (in that good way of course!).

More specifically, it is an emotionally difficult set of images to absorb, which again is good -- that seems the right tone for what you are trying to convey, difficult feelings. The Domestos image (rather than just the bland, generic term 'bleach') was vivid.

In fact, you may even be able to take it further, in that you spelled out the redness of the blood, why not continue in that vein? How about specifying the yellowness of the piss ('sickly yellow'?, 'vibrant yellow'?, 'dormant yellow'? 'unmentionable yellow'????) and the blueness/greenness/vague-aquaness?? of the Domestos... not just adding more detail and, thereby, more mental imagery to work with, but like a child mixing water colours the the clash of colours in the bowl, if we know from you just what those emotive colours are, would add so much to the reader's 'difficult' enjoyment of what is already a very fine poem.

Thank you,


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