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Mar 21, 2010
In like a motherfucker.

FLASH RULE: Poem must be a sestina. Suck it, person below me.

edit: this frees it from the 350 word minimum.


Mar 21, 2010
Benny, do I get a flash rule?

Mar 21, 2010

sebmojo posted:

Also: only internal rhymes.

Just being clear here

I went up on the roof and smoked a doob-
it's true, it makes your vision blur.

is fine but

I love you truly
be mine, Julie

is not, right?

Mar 21, 2010
gently caress yes. Call me a canary 'cos thread #1 is in the GOLDMINE.

Mar 21, 2010
entropy or something like it

After many long days I lay down
to sleep in the middle - who knew
rosewood had no smell? Bartolini
mkII and casual epiphany
stowed in a shoebox. poo poo
it's all coming back to me.

Tell me why you cry
kiddo. poo poo I know- I
just wanna hear you say it.
It's eating me inside-out and
that's just the dark cells; venal
things that never once said please.

what happened to my hands? You
always knew them better
than me. We met a man with rags
in his soul and had him drink gasoline;
the cosmic molotov- what we smallfolk call

You taste like cloves and you smell like
poo poo but I like that about you, kiddo.
You light my fire- you make my morning
like fresh-juiced OJ and little hairs
stuck in the shower drain.

In the back room of a pizza place
on Cuba we met a man whose head
was a brown peach. He had baby
gums- bare, pink and fragile. You remember?
He said “my lover has fat thighs and my guitar
has five strings and I teach both to sing in
the dead of night,” and he had us
dance until the candle burned down.

There's a fist of dark cells growing
around my heart and one day soon it'll grow
so big that even fire can't kill it.
It's young but it's got promise- it's making
friends, setting down a few roots. Come back
in a few months kiddo and it'll put on a show.

I got locked in the metro once- me
and this 5'2 French bloke smoking gauloises
from 3am til sunup 'cos “there's always
a train running in Paris. Just you wait.”
Nothing came out of that tunnel but
dead air.

We drank them down to the filters;
two hot inches of air to stop the shaking
in our hands. To shake is a fine thing-
it means your heart's still beating. I
shook when the peach man played-
shook until the candle burned down.
You taste like cloves and two inches
of hot air.

I know what you're going to say
kiddo. I just want to hear you
say it.

[355 words]

:siren: EDIT HOLY CRAP: prompt is internal rhymes only. Must contain a guitar, a tunnel and a juicer. :siren:

SurreptitiousMuffin fucked around with this message at 23:24 on Jan 10, 2013

Mar 21, 2010

Meis posted:


I hate poetry!

Therefore, I'm in. I'll take that concrete poem and make it tough enough to contain gamma radiation!
Aaaaw poo poo bro, I love concrete. Meis, you'll be wanting to use the [ code ] [ code ] tags or SA's formatting will ruin it. Also, you can't use forum code inside the [ code ] blocks so you can't use bold/italics etc. NOTE: because the linked page isn't really clear on the matter, it doesn't necessarily need to be shaped like a specific thing (e.g. a fish poem shaped like a fish), it's more like rigidly blocking a play; everything has to be in the right physical place on the page.

The white space is almost as important as the words

Because I'm showing off this week, here's a concrete experiment I did a few months back. I swear not everything I write is like that. Just the good stuff, for some reason.

                                         I have written her a love song that she may not forget

'Atomically speaking, we're immortal' spits the physicist with ringlets as I peek over my beer and 
peep poetry that'll burn the space between because there's nowhere in this heat for the real.

'Each atom,'

he continues

'each atom

in your body, given sufficient time, will fly away and out and find itself somewhere safe to sleep. 
Energy cannot be created or destroyed so it flies until it falls.'

The physicist with ringlets tell me we're all made of stardust and
'atomically atomically we're immortal'; in some long-range way
only really useful as a thought experiment and especially not when the sky is flayed dry and

                                                   (      The Sun
                                                   being hydrogen
                                                   lacks decorum)

I'll find my fear in sunburn and the physicist will dance and snatch at gossamer strands and I'll 
scream until my skin is cyclohexane clean and think of the sun splitting the man; cock to bonnet – 
ballsack to eyeball to see how well thought-experiment stands to heat.

I didn't ask to see my place in this atomic mess or hear dead is dead in all but the poetic sense but-

if i as I may know my mind
and steer her swiftly; lightly
I'd meet a man with big blue eyes
who'd do his best to fight me 

and we as we-  hot and sweaty
sat in the river mantle
would say our piece- each saying each
with words too hot to handle

yet i as we am truly free-
and drink it cold and gently;
I promise I'll try not to die
so long as you don't let me

Mar 21, 2010
Bitches, I'm on a roll this week. Here's a thing:

:siren: I will Thunderbrawl all poetic challengers. If you want to fight me, step up. :siren:

Mar 21, 2010

Etherwind posted:

By the way, I'm curious: in the event you'd actually stated your intentions like a real man, would you have accepted Dactylic Hexameter adapted to qualitative meter? It's the closest equivalent to Homeric verse. Iambic pentameter is loose by comparison.
If you can actually pull this off I'd be really impressed but you know DH uses a different isochrony from English that makes it really loving difficult to write English poetry in, right?

Like not just "aha give a dude sestina it'll be funny" hard: "Walt Whitman is the only guy I've ever seen pull it off convincingly and even he looked to be having a rough time of it" hard.

Mar 21, 2010
It's not really a Mora system, it's more to do with syllable weight. The best way I've seen the concept transferred into English is that through and dog both have 1 syllable but through is heavy and dog is light. A single dactyl is composed of three syllables that run heavy -> light -> light.

I think.

Mar 21, 2010

Etherwind posted:

Yeah, that matches what I know. The idea was to go stressed -> soft -> soft for dactyls and soft -> soft for spondees. The opening line I was kicking around was:

"Sing do I to my muse, low my voice dipped 'gainst her pale darkness"

You're probably right in that it's way too ambitious to work on in such a short deadline. Like, in the inconceivable situation that I find out I've lost my Thunderbrawl on the 12th, I would only have a day to do three hundred words of that. In a parallel universe where Symptomless Coma kicked my rear end, I'd have to go with iambic pentameter to stand a chance.
Oh no, go for it. If it fails then noone'll be surprised but if you succeed, you'll have won a place in my heart at least.

Mar 21, 2010
:siren: THUNDERBRAWL ME (ROUND 1) :siren:

Loss, redemption and milkshakes in 350 words or less.

No use crying

“the single worst year of my life,
I slaved under Genghis Khan or some
distant relative in a coalmine
outside Ulaanbaatar. In summer
we burnt and in winter we froze,”

he said, finishing his drink. The straw
played typhoon melodies in the foam;
all grey-brown bruises and spilt milk.

“something in me got froze so bad -
the sun melted it before I even saw
her hot smile; something so small
I never even knew what it was. 400
days and 400 nights I walked the desert
trying to fill a hole that wasn't there.”

Perhaps years passed before his granite
hands made a mountain of matters. He
held them up- spread them wide, low

then ordered another milkshake and made
a tempest of the drinking. I could see the
colour rising, the bruises fade. The sky
outside was quiet and dour
though inside I touched the heart of a storm.

Mar 21, 2010

Bad Seafood posted:

SurreptitiousMuffin - Submitted
Must contain a guitar, a tunnel, and a juicer.
Poem must feature internal rhymes. Only internal rhymes.
Bolded part wasn't in the prompt. The way I parsed it was "if you're going to use rhymes, they must be internal."

Mar 21, 2010
It's more like "why are you applying to work in a French Restaurant if you can't cook ramen."

Mar 21, 2010
:argh: I'll get you next time, Gadget. (it's best of three, isn't it?)

Fanky's right about the clutter. I think a good idea for future might be that prospective brawlers put "willing to brawl" in their signup post, then the judges get to pick one brawling pair per week. Otherwise the thread'll become crazy difficult to follow.

Mar 21, 2010

Fanky Malloons posted:

No, it's not best of three, you guys just both made horrible errors last time, so I'm making you do it again. Tip: be better this time :colbert:
I'm talking to sebmojo, not you nerdlinger.

Mar 21, 2010

Martello posted:

Maybe we should make a separate spinoff thread for Thunderbrawl. What do you guys think?
Didn't pipes! rule "no spinoff threads"?

Mar 21, 2010

toanoradian posted:

So is the idea then that some goons will announce their Brawl in this thread, then take their prompts, judges and submissions to the Sister Thread?
I think we should divorce it from that, even. Just have another thread where people issue writing challenges and other people can take them up. They can be nonspecific "I'LL FIGHT ANYONE ABOUT ANYTHING" or not "I THINK THE SADDEST RHINO IS A BAD RHINO AND I CHALLENGE HIM TO A LOVECRAFT-HORROR-3-PART-OFF" and people take them up if they feel like.

Mar 21, 2010
:siren: THUNDERBRAWL ROUND 2 :siren:

on the rooftop we found new names for old stars

We're smoking cloves and roses high above
the city streets. She says “We're out of beer
and love. We did our best and that's enough.”
My monsoon girl is in a drought. No fear
my son! I stop to measure weather and
lose track of time. My head is spinning now-
the tremor moving down from head to hands.
“It's Audenesque, almost,” she says. Her frown
is catching. poo poo, I'm losing track again:
it's something about oceans or bad dreams-
I never read the books she liked. A shame
but time is what you make of it. It seems

I've spent what little time I had with her
on hurricanes, poems, tremors and sleep.

Mar 21, 2010

sebmojo posted:

ps arguments about linguistic descriptivism can gently caress right off, tia
Ohoho if it comes down to this I will loving fight you. Presciptivism only works in fairy la-la land where language works like bricks instead of an angry snake. It's like trying to herd cats or nail jelly to the wall.

Mar 21, 2010
I put my flash rule at the bottom of the page. :catstare: I didn't want it disrupting the flow of the poem; if the reader's trying to pick the prompt out, it screws with the reading.

Though I did forget to say whether it was main or brawl, yeah.

Noah, watch this space.

edit: here goes
The magic of a sestina is really in the word choice; you have to choose six words that are versatile enough to last the distance. While I applaud the fact you've made a coherent poem from the form (which is really loving hard so bravo), you made it unnecessarily hard on yourself by picking a static and rather cliche angsty-poetry wordlist. The last three could work but the first three drag the whole endeavour down.


it's a bit loving maudlin, isn't it? It tries to do something pretty uplifting with them but by its very nature, it's not an uplifting form; the best sestinas tend to evoke a feeling of walls closing in: the form is so very restrictive, the reader can't help but feel trapped and twisted this way and that. With that in mind, words like blood and grind labour the point too much. A good approach is to pick six quite upbeat words and use the tension between the form and vocabulary to build emotional torque. In a non-morbid poem about death, you could've done a Prufrock sorta thing where you talk about big things in the least mythic way possible and in doing so, bring big abstracts like death down into more relatable and a lot more emotionally gutsy territory. Check this out (not a sestina):


Should I, after tea and cakes and ices,
Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?
But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,
Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in upon a platter,
I am no prophet—and here’s no great matter;
I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,
And in short, I was afraid.
Can you see how unlaboured it is? It's a little guy talking about big things and the tension that creates is absolutely devastating when Eliot finally throws the punch.

Never talk about DEATH and BLOOD and OBLIVION on their own: show people on the ground thinking about them. Ground them- make them more human and they go from these big abstract concepts to "holy crap these are things that will happen to me and you and my awesome dog who I love", which is what you want.

With a sestina, it's impossible to be light with your form but you can be light with everything else and play off the tension. I feel like I'm repeating myself. Am I making sense, though?

Overall: B-. You shot yourself in the foot with poor word choice and would've been better off if you'd forced the point less. It's a solid use of the form though - I can never begrudge a man who puts out a working sestina.

Did Noah sink or swim? Dog paddle.

SurreptitiousMuffin fucked around with this message at 08:32 on Jan 14, 2013

Mar 21, 2010
It's an eye rhyme with the f and b couplets to give the thing a sense of gentle rounding off and a continuation of cycles. :argh:

(I hate heroic couplets; they feel really cheesy)

but I probably had that coming. Hail budgieinspector. I doff my hat you.

Mar 21, 2010

Noah posted:

What is this carbs bullshit? Aren't you fat enough?
Lotta tough talk for a man who owes me a crit.

Mar 21, 2010
Thunderdome XXIV: Keyboard Kings

Alright kiddies, twinkle cave hasn't recovered from his victory night barhop coma yet, so the taking charge has fallen to myself and the honourable budgieinspector. After some discussion, we've decided that y'all are good at following rules but not so good when left on your own devices, so this week Thunderdome goes country. :clint:

:siren: Write a supernatural horror story set in a small town :siren:

Supernatural is important: think more Stephen King than Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

aaaaand that's it. There's not going to be any flash rules with strange form constraints or hidden surprises at the end: you're being given a fairly broad prompt to do whatever you want with. Upper limit is 1750 words. Deadline for signups with 11:59pm Friday NZDT, deadline for submissions is 11:59pm Sunday NZDT.

The honourable dead:

sitting here
SC Bracer
The Saddest Rhino
V for Vegas
Canadian Surf Club
Chairchucker :radcat:
:siren: BUDGIEINSPECTOR :siren:

SurreptitiousMuffin fucked around with this message at 05:03 on Jan 18, 2013

Mar 21, 2010
Also: To limit brawls from making GBS threads up the thread,

:siren: I will allow one brawl this round. If you have a particular beef, state it, then budgie and I will choose the one pair that get to go. We may choose nobody, if we don't think any of the brawls will be interesting or entertaining. :siren:

Mar 21, 2010

budgieinspector posted:

:siren: FLASH RULE :siren:

V for Vegas, your story shall contain a character from Jakarta who is incredulous that the characters in your small town aren't familiar with Indonesian customs and colloquialisms.
I said no flash rules. You're undermining my authority! :argh: I'm going to have to shiv one of them now, to show them who's boss.

Mar 21, 2010
Right, that's it.

:siren: For callous disregard of the rules as laid out, budgieinspector is now an entrant for this week. :siren:


Mar 21, 2010
Signups are closed.

Mar 21, 2010
12 hours to go people.

Mar 21, 2010
While we're in a writing mood, the current Glenn Beck GBS thread has turned into an amazing short fiction rodeo about life in a libertarian hellhole and I feel like Thunderdome should get in on that action.

Mar 21, 2010
:siren: One hour remains :siren: We are waiting on:

The Saddest Rhino
V for Vegas
Canadian Surf Club

Get loving cracking. You all get the time right when Sebmojo uses the timezone so there's not going to be any mercy for deadline-missers. I'm going to have a hard time telling all you losers apart next week.

SurreptitiousMuffin fucked around with this message at 10:47 on Jan 20, 2013

Mar 21, 2010
Ten minutes Jesus people c'mon.

Mar 21, 2010
aaaaaaaand that's time. V for Vegas shoots in under the line and sebmojo will be given leniency, if only for his sterling prior record in the 'dome.

Also because he both looks and acts like the bastard lovechild of Bob Ross and Syrio Forel. That goes a long way with me.


Canadian Surf Club


for braving the thread despite his failure, The Saddest Rhino may choose whether he gets a losertar or not. I am a merciful god.

Mar 21, 2010
Also Twinkle Cave you're the regular judge this week so if you want to take over duties, feel free. I only did because you apparently vanished.

Mar 21, 2010
Pretty sure Wolf Juice is the official drink of Thunderdome, bro. Vodka, white wine, raro, MONSTER, chili powder, squeeze a few lemons in.

It tastes like water and hits like a truck. It's gone so far past terrible, it's looped around the other way. That's a true Thunderdome drink, no doubt.

edit: forgot to mention you mix it in a plastic bucket.

Mar 21, 2010

supermikhail posted:

I abhor my writing. I loathe seeing my words appear on the screen. Before, I thought my plots were askew, but having entered Thunderdome I feel like all these black zigzags in the end fuze into one big smear of something brown and putrid.

Without any elegance, intrigue or wit.

As is natural of things brown and putrid.

~My official auto-critique.

And I loving hate always having to look up words in a Russian-English dictionary.

Thanks. I feel much better now.

My critique of everything you do

One could, perchance, be convinced that your method of writing prefers to distract the potential elocutionist from the content through the deployment of advanced and somewhat antiquated vocabulary and grammar. The style is more reminiscent of administrative paperwork or other such hurdy-gurdy, when you should be attempting to cultivate an elegant, naturalistic prose style al la Ernest Miller Hemingway. "For Sale. Baby Shoes: never worn" is a superior line to "We are selling the shoes of an infant. They have at no juncture been worn."



Mar 21, 2010

Martello posted:

Yeah but only as comedy. supermisha would use it as a serious line.
Pretty much. It's actually pretty funny to talk like that but I think you're doing it on purpose.

Look, watch this video.

Are the new lyrics:

a) funny
or b) good

both is not an option

Erik Shawn-Bohner posted:

Rectum? drat near killed'm.

Ahahahaha. Just kidding guys. Everyone is okay.

Mar 21, 2010
I'm going to quote my own email on why I chose Cap for the winner:


I'll clarify why I chose Capntastic: it's maybe not quite the best story there but it's such a metric fuckton better than where he started out, that really needs to be rewarded. All the others in the leading pack have been strong contenders since pretty much the start, so I'm willing to give the Cap a few underdog points that edge him over the top. It's a pretty messy, close call otherwise.
I wasn't the only one who picked him for the winner though, so there's that. Congratulations Capn. I'm not sure if I can find the quote in the old thread but I believe there was an idea that if a former loser won, they could get a new avatar on the house to replace their losertar. We still going with that?


Mar 21, 2010
O Capn! My Capn! Your victory's near done,
The ship has weather'd every rack, the prize you sought is won;
The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting.

:siren: Because Capntastic is our first ever LOSER RESURGENT, I'm letting him make the call for all future LOSERS RESURGENT: do you want to choose your new avatar, or do you want there to be a Thunderdome WINNERTAR that all LOSERS RESURGENT are awarded? If you choose the latter, any preferences to the design? Any 'domer with design ideas, feel free to post them. :siren:

Mar 21, 2010

neonnoodle posted:

Hello writers, I'm the new CC mod and I'd like to talk about Thunderdome-related issues.
The custom winner/loser titles are getting out of hand. You guys can have ONE style of winner avatar and ONE style of loser avatar. If you want to crown your own superwinners or ultralosers, pony up the :10bux: because I'm not going to run around with a bunch of foil-stamped limited edition cover variants.

NEXT: I WILL BE JUDGING YOU GUYS NEXT WEEK. Things are going to be done a little differently there, too. Please stay tuned for details.
I was chatting with ESB about this and we decided that since the RESURGENT thing is going to be pretty rare, we were going to take the cost ourselves.

Ultraloser is a different kettle of fish though: there's only going to be more and more as time goes on. Should we scrap it and leave Chairchucker alone with the av?


Mar 21, 2010

Martello posted:

Chairchucker is MY bottom bitch, please stop slobbering over his sweet Aussie rear end with your filthy Kiwi jowels. I bought him the Ultraloser avatar and there won't be any other ultralosers unless I say there will.

For the record, there have been no free unique avatars handed out here since I think Week 2 if even. The unique avs have all been bought by somebody.
Didn't actually know that. I assumed Ultraloser = someone who has lost more than once and I asked neonoodle to throw Zack_Gochuck one. My bad. Sorry about that NN. :(

Who got Capn's new one?

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