Santina, this is a wonderful poem. It tells Jenny’s
story well and gives good insight to her feelings.
You can improve this poem by adding movement
to your syllabic pattern. Whereas you had a constant
8-line format going throughout the poem, the critiqued
version shows how changing that format with the use of
varying syllabic lines can improve the rhythm and add
spice to your poem.
The first two original lines had a nice beat. I split them
into four lines in order to emphasize that beat by
emphasizing the important words in the lines. Namely,
Jumping, Skipping, Suddenly, and Something. Notice
how natural the words flow off your tongue as if they
were meant to be where they are.
Also notice the short 4-syllable line pattern was broken
up with a 3-syllable line before reaching verse 2.
With the exception of lines 1 and 5, verse 2 continues
the 4-syllable pattern. I transposed the order of the
words she thought in order to bring the reader back to
the brown she format you’d established in verse 1 line
3 (Line 7 in the Critiqued version.)
The virtual 4-syllable pattern continues in verse 3 with
the exception of lines 5 and 6. I changed the word made
to schemed because the hard c sound in schemed
coincided with the hard c in the word scared at the end
of line 1 and schemed is a more powerful word than the
word made. Since this is an important moment in the
poem, it’s better to emphasize it using a stronger verb.
I also changed the phrase she gave a to gave it a flick
because the latter phrase is more specific.
Verse four takes on a whole new form as far as the
syllabic pattern is concerned which is great since the
poem climaxed when Jenny flicked the grasshopper
in verse three and began to descend when the
grasshopper hopped away in the top of verse 4. The
syllabic line changes denote Jenny’s relief to be rid
of the bug and back to jumping rope.
December 29, 2006