poetry critical

online poetry workshop

keep it short

Write me a letter she said
keep it short
but passionate
let orange and green exotic birds
fly out from its pages
let the paper tremble to the touch
let the words unfurl like satin sheets
but, most of all keep it short
let it be warm like a morning kiss
that takes your breathe away
and keeps you an extra moment (or two)
in bed
let it pulsate with desire
with Latin extravagance
a majestic adventure into the rapturous unknown
choose every word perfectly as you would choose
a moment in your life
grasp the passion
test the pain
and, most of all keep it short
I do not want a poem, she said
specifically not a poem,
this time you must write me a letter
that I can bind with ribbons and pressed flowers
to keep in the most secret of places
so that, one day, a long time from now
I can look at it and say
my lover wrote me a letter
when he preferred to write me a poem

30 Oct 03

Rated 7.7 (8) by 5 users.
Active (5): 6, 9, 9, 9, 9, 10
Inactive (97): 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 3, 3, 3, 5, 5, 6, 7, 7, 7, 7, 7, 7, 7, 7, 7, 7, 7, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 9, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10

(define the words in this poem)
(5 more poems by this author)

(53 users consider this poem a favorite)

Add A Comment:
Enter the following text to post as unknown: captcha


Now this is good. I like all your visual lines esp 6-9. Think I'll add to favorites.
 — tinkerman

Nicely done.
 — unknown

OH! LOVE THIS..no nits. Wish I had thought of it.
 — Kardiac8

I love this. Very clever and such an easy read. It's stuff like this that makes all flowery, obscure waffle worth ploughing through.
 — unknown

I really like this. I think it could do with some neatening up. Line 22.. desperately strikes me as needing a full stop. I think it would show its charm better with more punctuation.
 — weed

Very nice. Favorited.
 — otherguy

Good shit. Only had a problem with line 16. I wasn't feeling it. Can you use another image or give us more for this connotation? Thanks... Nice Job!
 — aforbing

Those last three lines are golden. Amused me thoroughly there.
 — semaj

if this had some more punctuation, and a few, just a few less lines

I would love it
 — Ananke

Okay, consider this: this poem would be amazing if you kept only the following lines: 1, 2, 3, 11, 12, 13, 14, 18, 19, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, and 31. You may have to revise the structure a little bit in a couple of the lines, but I'm telling you, this gets straight to it, and is MUCH more powerful.
 — collyrium

It's so beautiful.....I love the imagination you have...I like the message. Very original.
 — Sadisfact

It's too long.
 — unknown

It's too short.
 — zepplin42

like the visual quality this poem has.
and the repitition of 'keep it short'
makes the title make it fit[that is worded SO WRONG.]

 — shakeit

so beautiful, very magical images
 — finnguy

this is very sweet...
 — unknown

Holy cow -- I'm glad the new ratings scheme bumped this baby into the top, because, frankly, wow. Your line breaks are incredible, your premise is great (lines 9/10, 21/22), and your ending (29-31) stopped me dead in my tracks. This near perfectly wrought. The overdramatic language (e.g., 17) suits it so nicely with your tone (when I read 7-9, I was so doubtful, but -- good god -- you pulled it off). I really just can't say enough about how good this poem is to me -- I hope to see more from you.
 — unknown

Like it a lot!  Now where is other stuff from you?  Line 27 lets me know you really understand women.
 — felicity

 — unknown

This is totally awsome!!! Such a simple read yet so much emotion. It flowed beautifully!! Great Job!!
 — Dinky

Fabu! made me warm all over even in the bitter cold of february. :)
 — BlueNymph

gave me goosebumps - even in the sweltering heat of february
 — unknown

boooo!!!! i'v seen better poetry from Graffiti on Bridge walls
 — unknown

i like it...its wonderfully written...
 — alan

Thanks so much for all these wonderful comments.

 — davidm

I've read this so many time and not said anythign ebcause I can't think of anything. I don't think it's perfect, yet there are no glaring mistake. THe only thing I can say is it's a little too long with not enough said
otherwise not bad...
 — Minx

This is so good - like running your fingers along the beads of an amber necklace.
A favourite of mine.
 — opal

i love you.
 — Xiada

i think you love words too much and you're letting that get in your way.  you don't need to be so descriptive sometimes.  i think you could do without lines 6-9, for example.  its good though, i love the feel of it.
 — unknown

very evocative indeed
 — mandrakeman

This is wonderful stuff. Not a line I would change.
 — unknown

really lovely piece of writing
 — roseypink

This makes me think of a song with beautiful singing, but the vocals are completely drowned in the mix because the band has far too many guitarists. Great idea, completely drowned with asides.

... unless you're shooting for the irony that your poem about keeping it short is actually too long. If that's the case, rock on!
 — ChrisTaylor

OH Man, holy crap.
This rocks.
You're amazing!
Pure talent :)

 — tennis47

Beautiful imagery.
 — honestcrime

Frank says...... BORING!    may i suggest giving up poetry for good! you'll thank me for it one day...
 — short1

really clever twist at the end - special.
 — unknown

This is an absolutely beautiful poem, every line is filled with a pleasant picture, and as you read this, you can actually visualize what this man might have wrote. This is one of my favorite poems, excellent work.
 — dmartin

i kinda thot it would be short... but really good nonetheless.  I LIKE IT!
 — Darkmagick13

good poem - lots of great images
 — wanderlust

i love the first stanza most, the last a bit too long. I have a question about the second stanza: Can we choose moments of our life? kind of alien thought, but maybe I misread you!
 — unknown

That was the gyest poem evrer. suck balls
 — unknown

Sounds awesome, little hard to write a letter short, but to include so many of those things...hell I might just try it. Anyway personal favorite, and looking forward to reading more. cali
 — cali86

typo sorry..."as short" cali
 — cali86

you suck

 — unknown

I liked this. Lines 4 and 5 let me know that it was going to be a poem full of imagery, and I eagerly kept reading. Your symbols are great, but not too overdone that it's hard to read.
 — Hquartz

Speechless...  I like rhymey poems, but this one takes the cake since it is expressive without being boring...  Images are clear and I've learned...

Understanding comes first and clearly this is done.  Enjoying makes it better, thus a better score...  Finally, learning to improve myself, "PRICELESS"

What can I say?  10!
 — KAuss

You paint the pictures very well. Wonderful.
 — unknown

Very good, I even might start to like free style. And that for me, express more than you know.

Words are the soul temple of my art.
 — Elzie

I like it.
 — dmu_96

 — JulieC

very cleverly constructed, mature writing this,

repetition of "she said" sounds nice
 — mints

hated it

 — unknown

Lovely poem. No offence intended, just feels a bit cliche.
 — k_e_n_t

It's really nice.  Very vivid and wonderfully illustrated with words.  I hope she liked your letter. =)
 — SqueakyAmore

I really like this one. Its very cute. You put it in a very clever way.
 — unknown

i like this a lot--it's an easy read with a lot to say.  it's worded most elegantly and gives me a lot of imagery to work with.  i really like it----can't say that about many poems i read--it has to touch something inside of me and this did just that....
 — emilydykstra

this is a beautiful poem. well done.
 — unknown

wow this is very original... Beautiful poem, very well writen
 — mandm4e

me too
 — unknown

this poem is so feakin stupid!!!!
 — unknown

o_O;; Too many people have commented on this piece... and I can believe that this piece is number 43! It should be way higher. ^^

The imagery alone in this is astounding... my favourite part I think must be the last stanza's lines 25 - 27 and 30 - 31.. The last two lines make my heart leap... it's simply beautiful- and the image of binding a letter with ribbons and pressed flowers... is so very wonderful.

I disagree with previous posters- this is not cliche, the very beginning seems like it might be- but once you really get into it, this isn't just an ordinary run-of-the mill love poem... it's so much more.
 — Inuki

you don't say I'd say when I heard her say that... this is so matter of fact it kicks booty and makes me not worry. such a cutey!
 — C

cool shit here.
 — unknown

I also adore your poem. I love the second stanza especially lines 15-21. The imagery is so vivid and beautiful. The last lines are perfect. I think i shall add this to my favorites. amazing...
 — peanut

Very well written, you actually put your words in motion and expressed your feelings, thanks for keeping it short.
 — DeadEmotion

I remember commenting on this before I had this account. I can't find it, but I certainly remember writing down its URL because I liked it so much. Imagine my surprise when it hit #1! Well done!
 — FangzOfFire

I don't think this could be any better. I absolutely love it. There's nothing else I can say. Excellent!
 — Jsmiles05

I didn't like the repetative use of 'let the'. "let orange and green birds" "let the words unfurl" "let it be warm" etc etc.
How about "I'd set loose orange and green birds" "cause the paper to tremble" "and the words unfurl" - use the "let it be warm" then "make it pulsate with desire"

Some ideas of different ways to do things. Otherwise this is a beautiful passionate and striking poem. I can certainly see why it is 'top rated'
 — kalika

 — mazzy

Dude, what if it were this:

Write me a letter, she said.
Keep it short, but passionate,
sensual, erotic, an painful,
but most of all, keep it short.

Or something like that.  This'd be a really cool poem to utilize that sort of idea with.
 — collyrium

I was hoping your poems vanished into thin air too. Trite.
 — unknown

agree with weed, but a great poem. 8
 — KLaBerge

you should have followed your own advice and stopped at the end of the first stanza.
 — hank

This poems pretty good I suppose
 — silly

 — OKcomputer

I like it.  It's unique.  I love 'Latin extravagance' and 'orange and green exotic birds'.
I have a few suggestions:
Line 24 seems repetitive.  In line 27, I lthink 'to keep in a secret place' would sound better.  Lines 12 and 15 seem a little cliche to me.
 — abby

Thats very good, I like how it's so demanding also :)
 — Rwg-impaired

what a beautiful poem well done
 — suzie007uk

instead of saying orange and green birds, use different words for those colors, like jade/emerald/lime, or apricot/peach/tangerine-something really elaborate and beautiful.
 — sassybnyss

i am in awe right now. i absolutely love this poem. after i read it, i got one of those goofy smiles that won't go away no matter what you do. i love it. it's so... clean? it's so to the point.*sigh*
 — stainedsteal

i like.... very nice.....
 — nbookmonkey

instead of saying orange and green birds, use different words for those colors, like jade/emerald/lime, or apricot/peach/tangerine-something really elaborate and beautiful.

no, the point of the poem was the simplicity in the lines and content. using those words would just wander away from that.
 — teehee

There are some grammar problems going on with your commas and the word "breathe" in line 12, but I'm overlooking in in my rating because it's a very good poem.  I don't know much about your writing, but if I had written it, I'd count it as one of my best.  You should be really proud of it.
 — chevolleau

This was beautiful. The lack of much punctuation doesn't take anything away from it in my opinion. Loved the ending
 — soda482

some times i count my fingers just to make sure i have all eleven.
 — unknown

wow. (keeping it short).
 — noodleman

that is absolutely amazing... i am impressed... wish i had the talent
 — unknown

...One day Ill be graced with the gift to make my words dance such as yours.
 — TrueToIt

Whoa, i really liked this! totally added to the favorites!! ((9))
 — Heylee

Wow.  This is fantastic!  It definitely bridges the gap between "sappy love poetry" and clever prose.  (Sorry, it's late - I don't usually sound so obnoxiously "smart".)  Anyway, straight from the heart: keep writing!
 — Rose

 — unknown

 — CrimsonStorm

But keep it short.  How to express everything in a single sentence.  What a nice problem to have.......
 — RichardElam

Honestly, I think the first stanza is gold. There are certainly moments throughout the poem, but that first stanza really hit my spot.
 — unknown

what are people saying its good its bad
 — unknown

 — unknown

I like the imagery in the poem.  The first stanza conveys feelings of love that a person has for their significant other.  You can imagine how words will make you feel as if someone is making love to you.  I like the contrast between a poem and a letter becaue letters are much more intimate.  You have to come up with a lot of things to say in a letter.  Good poem.
 — valaggie

I love the flow of this...it feels just right...especially the last line
 — driving

it just a type of letter i 'd like to get.
like it loads
 — aggie

More than beautiful
 — Lola0082

i think this is an awesome poem great job
 — unknown

nice. it has a good ending but very long. 7ish
 — invain

So enchanting, the best kind of poetry is the kind that readers can relate and this poem made me sit back and think of my lover.
Thank you
 — LadyLen

Wow! I *love* this! Awesome! I like it in too many ways to list. Wonderful stuff...
 — jneiberger

Simple, brilliant!
 — indy

got me horny right there............
 — unknown

just beautiul I mean just beautiful damnit
 — unknown

that poem is amazing it rox!!
 — unknown

I love lines 30-31, they are beautiful to me.
 — unknown

it sux w ho in t he world write something that korny now come on. on line 4 why wud you say dorky colored bird come on give up poetry already unless u take some english class then just maybe u will have a chance.

nah im just kidding i loved it very much good job i want to see more of ur korny poems cuz i can laugh at all of them.
            ;          ~ krystal~
 — unknown

It was all right I would give it a 6
 — unknown

 — Meep

this is worth an 8 at least, it's really well written.
 — Meep

 — unknown

 — unknown

hot damn, that's a good poem.
 — unknown

i like this poem it sounds all warm and mushy. It feels like you're having the time of your life
 — unknown


 — unknown


I HATE IT 100%
 — unknown

i hate this
 — unknown