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[personal profile] crowroad
Title: Taking
Poet: [ profile] laughablelament
Rating: NC-17
Pairing: Wincest
Tags/Warnings/Spoilers: incest kink
Prompt: "Taking some 'we' time." - Dean, 10.04 (Paper Moon)

Look at this sexy thing [ profile] laughablelament posted at [ profile] spnapo!  And by 'sexy' I don't mean the line breaks. (OK that too.)

We'd love some p
rompts or poems/poem-like things/lyrical drabbles/images/self-contained bits of fic/whatever's poetry to you! And speaking of  whatever's-poetry-to-you, I wanted to write about why [ profile] z_publicizes' vignette Higher Learning reads like a poem to me, but haven't had the chance.  Also [ profile] caranfindel's single-sentence fic and this drabble by [ profile] madebyme_x! And also this: Feathers and Claws by [ profile] themegalosaurus: image-heavy Sam-possession vignette inspired by [ profile] indiachick's <3 prompt and with striking art by [ profile] lennelle.

What's poetry/poetic to you? Or: any images/metaphors/lines etc. from fic that have really stayed with you? Recs? Self-recs? Feel free to post older stuff at [ profile] spnapo too!

Date: 2017-04-03 05:57 am (UTC)

Date: 2017-04-03 10:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thanks for mentioning me! :)
I'm tempted to join the spnapo fun but I'm a little intimidated by poetry. Well, I'll never know unless I try.

Date: 2017-04-04 04:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Would love it so much if you came and joined the spnapo fun. I think the spirit of napo is meant to work against poetry as an intimidating or restrictive form/genre/space...and really anything goes: prose poem? art that expresses a metaphor or just an image you like? thing that uses white space or lines or structure a little differently than straight-up narrative? other? <3

Date: 2017-04-03 03:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I started writing Higher Learning as poetry, couldn't get the lines to break organically, and so revised it into prose. I'm delighted that it still reads as poem-like to you, since I love structural hybrids.

As for what reads as poetry to me, subjectively? Well, huh. Kind of fumbling here. I suppose it's all in the prosody, a greater emphasis placed on rhythm--greater than what exactly I find harder to answer. I think most good prose has a sense of rhythm, but it's generally more diluted by other concerns.

With poetry, when I first look at the text on the page, the first thing I take in is the line groupings, how the lines break; I get a sense of the meter just from that first visual. A prose-poem doesn't make that same first impression; it's only as I'm reading it that I experience the rhythm and respond to it as poetry. I think that might be part of what I like about it--it sneaks up on you.

Here's an excerpt from Colum McCann's Transatlantic--"A strong wind arrives from the west in uneven gusts. They are twelve hours late already, but now is the time--the fog has lifted and the long range weather reports are good. No clouds. The sky above seems painted in. The initial wind velocity is strong, but will probably calm to about twenty knots. There will, later, be a good moon. They climb aboard to scattered cheers, secure their safety belts, check the instruments yet again. A quick salute from the starter. Contact! Alcock opens the throttle and brings both engines to full power. He signals for the wooden chocks to be pulled clear from the wheels. The mechanic leans down, ducks under the wings, armpits the chocks, steps back, throws them away. He raises both arms in the air. A cough of smoke from the engines. The propellers whirl. The Vimy is pointed into the gale. A slight angle to the wind. Uphill. Go now, go. The waft of warming oil. Speed and lift. The incredible roar. The trees loom in the distance. A drainage ditch challenges on the far side. They say nothing. No Great Scott. No Chin up, old sport. They inch forward, lumbering into the wind. Go, go." --Well, that's from a longer passage best experienced in full, but I think the idea is there. The emphasis on rhythm, how it creates immediacy and intimacy.

Rhythm works the same way with laughablelament's poem--but with line breaks that add the element of surprise and fit the subject matter to give it a coy, playful feel. Bite a hickey high//inside one thigh. There's a pause where we don't know where that hickey's going, and the suspense is part of the sexiness.

The rhythm of caranfindel's single-sentence fics is a suspended breath--you take a breath at the start and you don't let it out until the end stop. That creates a sense of visceral immediacy, grabbing the reader in a way that's not that dissimilar to what McCann and laughablelament are doing, with their lines like swift exhalations. It's the same goal--immerse the reader in the moment--reached by different technique.
Edited Date: 2017-04-03 03:58 pm (UTC)

Date: 2017-04-04 04:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"I started writing Higher Learning as poetry, couldn't get the lines to break organically, and so revised it into prose. I'm delighted that it still reads as poem-like to you, since I love structural hybrids.": I think I could hear/feel that in HL, the way it turns around an image, even in the way it breaks.

It probably won't surprise you that this happens to me too, in both directions. Sometimes a thing just will not come out as prose--and the boundary is always a fluid frontier. I think if structural hybrids (and other sorts of hybrids) didn't exist, most of my writing wouldn't exist, heh.

"I think most good prose has a sense of rhythm": yep. And I think I read very much like you, prose poem or lyric, whether "poetry" is suggested visually, in the breaks, or no.

McCann is stunning--I love exhalation and imperative, and I see it too, the way both "Taken" and Transatlantic" suspend us--yes, suspended breath; these three excellent examples of different technical paths to the same.
And yeah, this is one of those things poetry does (for me) considers the effects of breath and space; things excellent prose can do too...

Date: 2017-04-03 04:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm not worthy of being on this list - my writing is so prosaic that I've actually included bulleted lists in my fic. Okay, not literal bulleted lists, but I have a habit of having characters rattle off numbered lists. I can't help it; I'm a technical writer by training. Ordered lists are a good thing.

Anyway. What is poetry? I can't describe it but I know it when I see it. I really need to do a better job of keeping track of things I love, because I can't provide examples! Everything you write, obviously. Most works by [ profile] kalliel and [ profile] indiachick. Over on AO3, there's "The Choir of Principalities" by deadlybride, which I find fascinating and beautiful.

Date: 2017-04-04 12:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I love lists! If you wrote a story entirely in list form I'd surely be enthralled. : )

Thank you for pointing me to the choir of principalities--that was awesome in the biblical sense.

steeplechasers/askance is another writer of experimental prose/poetry that you'd probably enjoy in case you haven't already.
Edited Date: 2017-04-04 12:44 am (UTC)

Date: 2017-04-04 05:12 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Am also a big, big fan of lists.

Date: 2017-04-04 01:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I remembered I actually have one list-based fic but y'all have given me an idea for how to do something that was already churning in my head...

Date: 2017-04-05 03:29 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
your listfic; <3! Really happy to hear that we conjured up some technique ideas!

Date: 2017-04-04 01:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
steeplechasers/askance is another writer of experimental prose/poetry that you'd probably enjoy in case you haven't already.

Mmmmm, yes, already on my stalker list! :)

Date: 2017-04-04 04:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Well, you totally are worthy of any list that contains awesome wordcraft <3 One-sentence fics are a fave of mine.
Also: lists. Love lists and I use 'em a lot in prose/poetry. Don't know if it would surprise you that I've taught a little tech writing in the past; have a real appreciation for that clarity, precision. And science writing...see a lot of poetry there.

I haven't read "Choir" --<3!

ETA: I read it. Excellent. And the discussion in the comments <3 I save those conversations.
Edited Date: 2017-04-04 05:15 am (UTC)

Date: 2017-04-03 06:04 pm (UTC)
laughablelament: (BunnyDean)
From: [personal profile] laughablelament
Higher Learning! Thank You! Good chance I'd have missed that.

Nodding here at Z's concept of greater, yes! I keep thinking (to mangle one of your favorite metaphors), poetry is when the vehicle is more important than the destination? Or maybe, equally important. Sometimes. :p


Linden's "Unraveling" -- which is the kind of smut I aspire too, whoo boy. This passage:
Sam’s other hand was stroking calloused and warm up his leg, over his hip, along the taut, jumping muscles of his stomach, and Dean didn’t—he’d been fucked before, for fun and for money, but Christ on a crutch no one else had ever looked at him like this; no one else had ever touched him like this while they’d opened him up, idle and possessive and familiar, like they knew him, like they loved him, and it was cracking something open in his chest that he wasn’t certain he could afford to break.
All one sentence, for a start. Liquid, long clauses split with lists. Stuck in my head for weeks.

I also loved Nisaki's "Dear Owner," for the first-person, clever and offbeat samulet voice and sweet sentimentality.

(Which got me thinking about Reno, and from there just all of your stuff, okay? Right now it's still "whatever dead is these days," but there's always a quote of yours floating around my noggin.)

Poetry is taking the two-lane blacktop instead of the interstate. Fucking around with Lincoln Logs on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. Playing Operation with the goal of making your buddies jump. Ok now I'm officially just talking shit.

Date: 2017-04-04 05:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Aw, please talk more shit, heh. Because yes: the two-lane. The double Lincoln (s), the play, the offbeat, the liquid, the lists, the drive, the drive. (One reason I'm sorta not a spoilerphobe: care more about the drive than the destination.) Writer in the driver's seat, I know; hope I don't wear that one out, heh.

Poetry is seeing it slant; I dunno, all the small stories clicking around in the cracks in the second layer of paint under the spare tire in the trunk on a cold Sunday in Indiana. And the vast sky above.

Poetry is talking shit, ( ;

Date: 2017-04-04 01:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I don't know if the rest of the world considers this poetry, but [ profile] z_publicizes published a new chapter of Blood Will Out (thank you baby Jesus) and maybe this quote is just really good prose, but to me, it sings:

He was fully conscious that this wasn't the Mark, driving. It was just in the passenger's seat, humming along. Driver picks the music. Yes, it sang when he picked up the knife - he could tell by that particular electric bodily thrill, sharpening his senses to that razor-edge, highlighting the vital points in the body before him: jugular, carotid, femoral, kidneys, solar plexus. The map of nerves, gaps in the skeleton by which to reach the critical organs - but then again, it would have been just as sated if he'd hacked the prisoner's head off, open and shut. The Mark lived and hungered for the final act, wasn't too particular about the build up. No - holding himself back, even while he was slashing and bashing, burning and turning knives in wounds as if trying to uncork the body like a bottle of wine - that was all him. He knew this. He knew it as he opened his mind to welcome the familiar chorus: the screaming, the distant humming, the long road-song of destruction and bloodlust.

Date: 2017-04-05 04:02 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
oh, it sings. <3!

Date: 2017-04-05 06:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Not to speak for the baby Jesus, but you're welcome. And thanks <3

Date: 2017-04-04 02:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Okay, so, recs. Here are some (out of many) hybrids or prose works infused with what I think of as the values of poetry. When I think of prose poems I think of crowroad, askance, laughablelament, kalliel, indiachick--but they've already been mentioned or are present. *waves*

DirigibleBoyKing's fœtus; œstrus
"Your belly swells pale as the sky, and just like last time there's the congratulations. Inbox full of unanswered emails. John, gruff sometimes, holding your gut with wish-calloused palms. Your house has changed, maybe in salutation; tree outside it bare-knuckled, scraping brittle fingers over your window when the wind mumbles through the streets. Dean doesn't like it. You haven't told him that the noises live under your skin. He's scared of the dark, anyway. Dean is four, a little thing, affectionate. Eyes like winter rain."

quiescent9's The Family of Things--Sam and post-Cage trauma, Sam/Dean, non-linear.
"It is another day. There's a road. You're supposed to follow it. You've never liked driving. Too many variables, you said. And then Dean put those keys into your hands and his eyes warned, don't let me down and take care of baby and fuck, Sam stop being a girl and so you drive, down this road that runs on and on with no end in sight, and you think of everything (girls, boys, Dean) except how you stuck that knife into that empty shell of a person back there in Bobby's house, the one you'd look at in the mirror but don't recognise, and ain't that a fucking cliché. And someone says what the hell is this shit doing on the radio anyway before a hand disciplines the stereo into silence and Sammy drives. Sammy drives and Dean smiles, proud of his little brother with the too-big hands on that steering wheel, palms slippery against the leather and you smile too."

dear-tiger's Love and Crocodiles--S6-ish, Dean makes a deal for a guide who'll take him through Hell and to Sam. Sam/Dean.
"“Fine.” Dean’s throat hurt. He took a couple of deep breaths and tried again. “Fine. It’s yours in exchange for a passage for a night and a day.”

He looked at the horrible thing in Sergio’s hand and thought of the way Sam smiled like the sun. He thought of kisses in the dark – of hard ones and the slow ones that melted him from the toes to the top of his head. He thought of driving through the night with the radio playing softly, something swelling and swelling in his chest until it almost burst him open.

In the room gone dim, there seemed to be something crocodilian in Sergio’s face. He pulled a Kleenex from somewhere and started wiping the sludge off Dean’s love.

alethiometry's Promises To Keep Sam/Jess
"The man in the car might have been driving for an eternity, or he might have started driving not five minutes ago. He couldn’t tell, but the sky was clear and the forest was beautiful and the steady pounding of the tires on asphalt was downright hypnotizing, so he wasn’t bothered. Sometimes the forest would whisper to him, although he had no idea what it was saying. Soothing words, he supposed. Words that belonged to a hazy memory of warmth and sunlight and dust motes swirling like fairy dust around a face that loved him, and that he loved. He had no idea where the memory came from. It was a good memory, though, one that warmed him from the inside, so he cradled it inside him and urged the car on."

compo67's Day of the Dead Sam/Dean, part of a larger verse of futurefic domesticity in Chicago.
"His nightmare opens up to a page from a coloring book. At first he's given a pencil, but it warps into a quill. Pen nib. Indian ink. Scratch. Tear. Shred. Too sharp for the page he ends up ripping it down the middle and it is a picture of his own face.

The blank eyes stare at him. Never more. Never more. The lids flap like wings, his eyelashes rustle, and the eyes turn...

Edited Date: 2017-04-04 02:45 pm (UTC)

Date: 2017-04-05 04:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Three of these I've read and they're on my "poem-prose" list too--and two I haven't: compo67 and quiescent9! Excellent excerpts.

Adding here some from writers not yet mentioned in this conversation:

two by two by story_monger (prose poem)

And [ profile] nigeltde, whom you've recced before--but this:

Shark Fin Blues (poetic prose). Am also a fan of David Milch (esp. his Deadwood) from whom the summary for this story ("a lie agreed upon")comes; another writer who truly appreciates the rhythms and interactions of words!

These two are verse rather than hybrid:

Union Lines by ponderosa

Killing Time by de_nugis (sestina!)

All the great recs you and others made on my sentence post on spn_writing; what wealth of poetic prose!
recs, great lines
Edited Date: 2017-04-05 04:39 am (UTC)


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