Consortium Response 9: Your Pick!

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Consortium Response 9: Your Pick!

Post  Mr. Lyon on Fri May 24, 2013 2:38 pm

As we wind down the school year (completely for the seniors!), now is an excellent time for you all to share and compare what YOU consider to be examples of excellent writing. For this assignment, please share with your classmates a piece of writing - either prose or poetry, famous or not - that carries profound meaning for you. (Please select a piece of writing that's within the bounds of school-appropriateness!) Then complete the following steps:

(1) Paste the entire piece itself into the forum OR provide a link to the piece so that everyone else can find it online.
(2) Write a response in which you explain with specific references to the text why the piece carries meaning for you.
(3) Your responses to others should respond to two pieces that OTHERS have selected, again responding with references to those other texts.

Remember to follow the rules of forum posting as set on our class website under the tab "Creative Consortium." You must post an original response of your own AND two replies to two classmates' responses in order to receive full credit for this assignment. DO NOT CREATE NEW TOPICS WHEN RESPONDING TO THIS PROMPT; simply respond WITHIN this topic.

DUE DATE/TIME: Wednesday, May 29 (responses must be posted no later than 8:00 AM)

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Consortium Response #9

Post  llamasarecool on Fri May 24, 2013 4:20 pm

http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/life-is-fine/

This poem is called "Life is Fine" by Langston Hughes. I have used this poem in English class for an assignment, and I really liked it and it just kinda stuck. I really enjoyed this piece because it shows that no matter what, suicide is not the answer. Life can be changed and lived the way that you want to live it. It also shows how the human mind works. We say we're going to do something, but don't because it is either scary, stupid, or irrelevant. I really liked "Life is Fine" also because of the use of imagery and personification. The reason that I think why this one piece carries deep meaning for me is because it is very well written and because I have heard a lot about suicide, and it breaks my heart. This poem gave a lighter tone of it and tells people that doing that is silly, and that's why i liked this poem.

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Consortium Response #9

Post  jemoria on Mon May 27, 2013 3:31 pm

it's funny how hello is always accompanied with goodbye
it's funny how good memories can start to make you cry
it's funny how forever never seems to last
it's funny how much you'd lose if you forgot about your past
it's funny how “friends” can just leave when you are down
it's funny how when you need someone they never are around
it's funny how people change and think they're so much better
it's funny how many lies are packed into one “love letter”
it's funny how one night can contain so much regret
it's funny how you can forgive but not forget
it's funny how ironic life turns out to be
but the funniest part of all, is none of that's funny to me

-Anonymous

I chose this poem because it's so relatable. Every line brought back a different memory. I also liked the irony within this poem. Obviously none of these things are "funny". The repetition of "it's funny how" also plays to the true meaning of the poem. I also like the lack of grammar and capitalization, I feel like it makes the poem more relatable. It's written like something I would read on tumblr or twitter which is probably why I like it so much. I just think its a great poem that evokes alot of feelings and memories.

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Re: Consortium Response 9: Your Pick!

Post  31544 on Mon May 27, 2013 8:58 pm

Ozymandias by Percy Bysshe Shelley

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
`My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away".

The poem uses an excellent metaphor to remark upon the transitory nature of all human accomplishment (regardless of how great and enduring it may seem). The "works" of Ozymandias, flaunted as symbolic of his power and permanence, have been eroded away to nothing. Shelley is commenting on modern human society, which largely seems to take for granted that the world as it is now will be everlasting (or at least remembered), when in reality all that we know will likely be erased (if not by time, then by our own stupidity). I think that it is a good thing to keep in mind.

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Re: Consortium Response 9: Your Pick!

Post  scribbledskies on Mon May 27, 2013 10:17 pm

@jemoria I think I first saw that poem online when I was in middle school and loved it. I agree it is very relatable-everyone has their own memories and experiences they can draw from this poem. One of the reasons it's so pleasing is because it is deceivingly simple. Also the repetition of "it's funny how" in every line give the poem an informal tone, so that anyone can understand it after one read.

@llamasarecool I love Hughes's poem that we analyzed as a class together. There are so many different interpretations that can come from this poem. I love how it is about the beauty of life but the message is not outright stated. Also, it is debatable whether the author is really trying to commit suicide or not. Overall a lovely poem.

So hard to choose a favorite piece of writing, but here is one of them: "Wear Sunscreen" by Mary Schmich.

Wear sunscreen.

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they've faded. But trust me, in 20 years, you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked. You are not as fat as you imagine.

Don't worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blindside you at 4 p.m. on some idle Tuesday.

Do one thing every day that scares you.

Sing.

Don't be reckless with other people's hearts. Don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.

Floss.

Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself.

Remember compliments you receive. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements.

Stretch.

Don't feel guilty if you don't know what you want to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don't.

Get plenty of calcium. Be kind to your knees. You'll miss them when they're gone.

Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll have children, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance. So are everybody else's.

Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don't be afraid of it or of what other people think of it. It's the greatest instrument you'll ever own.

Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room.

Read the directions, even if you don't follow them.

Do not read beauty magazines. They will only make you feel ugly.

Get to know your parents. You never know when they'll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings. They're your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.

Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.

Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard. Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft. Travel.

Accept certain inalienable truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get old. And when you do, you'll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders.

Respect your elders.

Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you'll have a wealthy spouse. But you never know when either one might run out.

Don't mess too much with your hair or by the time you're 40 it will look 85.

Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.

But trust me on the sunscreen.
---

When I first came across this I had to read it over again, it was that touching. Here is all wonderful advice - to enjoy youth, to enjoy every aspect of life. It is relatable and makes me both laugh and cry. It's sad even with its optimistic, upbeat tone. I love the "love and appreciate your body" part because I feel like these days it is so easy to compare yourself to others you consider more beautiful and beat yourself up for not looking up to par. But you will be in this body your whole life so you might as well appreciate and take care of it.
So yeah that's my little speech. Hoorah writing.

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Re: Response 9: Your pick!

Post  ecl123 on Tue May 28, 2013 5:05 pm

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/173467

For my poem, I chose "We Wear The Mask" which I believe we read in class. I think this an excellent poem & can be relatable to everyone. At some point in all of our lives we put on this "mask" by pretending to be someone we are not or hiding our true emotions. We build up walls against people, we don't tell them why we're mad or sad. We all pretend to be happy for the sake of others, sometimes we even feel as though no one cares about our misery.

@scribbledskies I think I've read this piece before too & loved it! It is so as you said, touching and very really leaves an impact on you. After reading this I had to sit and just think about the advice that I had just been given and really appreciate it. I especially loved the part about living in New York City but leaving before it makes you too hard because it is one of my life long dreams to live in New York City but I also dream of having a family and I definitely don't want to raise my children in a city. Very nice piece!

@jemoria I really liked the poem you chose! You are right, every line does bring back a memory and none of these things are truly funny! It brings irony to the poem and definitely strengthens the piece. I really like the line "it's funny how good memories can make you cry" because I often get upset when I think about happy things that are now just a memory in my past. Great choice!

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Re: Consortium Response #9: Your Pick!

Post  gbs13 on Tue May 28, 2013 8:12 pm

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

I chose this poem because I remembered reading it a long time ago and I really liked it. I think that the poem has a really great meaning. I like how it shows that the road less traveled can “make all the difference” which I took to be a good thing. I found it very relatable since sometimes the path not taken can be hard to choose but ultimately it turns out better. I also really liked Frost’s choices of rhymes and found that it helped the poem to flow better for me which was good.

@scribbledskies
I really like your choice. I thought that it was funny and sweet all at the same time. I liked how there are some parts that feel more serious and realistic like “floss” and “get plenty of calcium” but then there are funnier ones like “do not read beauty magazines”. I agree with what you said and found the whole thing very enjoyable. The story almost gave me the impression to not take life too seriously. Great job!

@jemoria
I thought that you chose a really nice poem. I had never read this before but I love it now that I have! I agree with you on how the repetition of “it’s funny how” really shows the meaning of how it really isn’t that funny and is rather sad. The poem feels like someone’s thoughts or that they’re talking to a friend which makes the poem, as you said, more relatable. Nice Job!

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Responding to scribbledskies

Post  jemoria on Tue May 28, 2013 9:23 pm

Wow, I loved that. It was such a great piece of writing. It's just so relatable because most of those things run through my head daily. Thank you so much for posting this, i totally agree on all of your points.

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Responding to ecl123

Post  jemoria on Tue May 28, 2013 9:32 pm

I love this poem. I think it's very relatable in that I'm pretty sure all of us know someone who's fake. Someone who throws you that fake smile in the hallway, or a half-hearted head nod. I read it over a couple of times, nice job! I agree with all your points.

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Creative Consortium #9

Post  Dark Woods on Tue May 28, 2013 10:48 pm

Tree
-Anonymous

If you climb it from the ground,
You see gnarled, mossy, cracked.
Twisting tangled branches,
Rising into the air at every angle imaginable.

Then come the leaves,
A snaky spidery web,
Etched upon and across an emerald green.

Then come the blossoms.
A snowy rosy pink,
She blushes as all gaze at her bountiful, pale flowers.

She reaches into the sky.
Hoping to catch one of the few wispy clouds above her,
But she cannot reach the clear blue sky
Nor touch the golden sun while still rooted to the ground.

I picked this poem, despite it not being all gloomy and dark or well known because of the picture it paints and the meaning that's hidden in it. I think the best imagery is in the stanza about the leaves. Anyway, I interpreted the tree in poem as being a person. someone who's tough on the outside, the rough bark, and unpredictable, the wild branches, This person wants more, or something better, but who they are, or something else about them ties them down and keeps them from obtaining whatever they are trying to achieve. Really what drew me in was the wording.

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reply to ecl123

Post  Dark Woods on Tue May 28, 2013 11:01 pm

I really enjoyed reading we wear the mask. The relatability of being surrounded by people who are all pretending to be somebody they aren't is something thats too prominent to ignore, although in this poem it's sort of implied that people are hiding something good and intriguing about themselves in trying to fit in, whereas in real life people actually become their masks in order to gain acceptance from others, alienating all things that made them stand out from the crowd. In short, we wear the mask brings many personal experiences for me, and I liked that.

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Reply to jemoria

Post  Dark Woods on Wed May 29, 2013 12:04 am

I too thought of a lot of things i've experienced when reading this poem. The repeated use of its funny how just gets so repeated that you skip over it automatically, recognizing that it doesn't mean anything. The use of irony sort of mimicks the whole whats wrong? nothing and are you okay? i'm fine sort of thing, brushing off whatever concern others have and trying to uphold a strong image. I really liked this poem.

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Re: Consortium Response 9: Your Pick!

Post  Jmo on Wed May 29, 2013 10:03 pm

"Araby" James Joyce
http://fiction.eserver.org/short/araby.html
This peice is very realtable: a young boy is infatuated with a girl. In the end, the boy is disapointed because he cant buy her a gift and his infatuation seems to end. The fair represents the boys exotic dreams, and when the fair is not what he expects, they are crushed along with his infatuation with the girl. The story is lovely, and I would recomend it to all.
@ Jemoria You mentioned the repeated line "Its funny how." The live is very cliche on purpose. The speaker says that he doenst think any of it was "funny," which is probably why the speaker chose the cliche line "Its funny how"
@gbs13 The speaker's choice to say "it made all the difference," I think refers to fate, and perhaps the poem deals with fate and how taking a differnt "path" can greatly affect your fate.

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Creative Consortium #9

Post  Kingoflizard on Wed May 29, 2013 10:33 pm

Life is a twisted road dominated by unexpected twists and turns,
However at the end of the day, it is from them that we learn.
And in spite of being so hard to cross,
the flame of hope ensures that you're never lost.
So keep the flame of hope always bright and strong,
For as long as hope reigns, nothing can go wrong.
- poem by wishafriend.com, anonymous

I love this poem because it is not what we usually analyze, I always like poems on keeping hope, and in my opinion the wording is simple and straight forward but that's why I like it.

@ECL123 I agree with you and I loved the poem too, how you can clearly see people and their "mask" but also how it's such a normal thing and everyone knows it. Some people or most that I know are who they pretend to be because they are so busy wearing the mask.
@DarkWoods I like your poem for your reasons also, not much the wording but the imagery is really good. And also not because of it's sadness like you said

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Re: Consortium Response 9: Your Pick!

Post  31544 on Sun Jun 02, 2013 3:55 pm

scribbledskies-
That's a very nice piece. It manages to give advice without seeming pretentious, and be self-deprecative without self-pity.

Dark Woods-
I like ambiguous nature of the poem. It allows for multiple interpretations of meaning (more so than the average poem).

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Reply: "Friend"

Post  jr1235 on Tue Jun 04, 2013 9:38 pm

"Friend"

"You and I are friends
You laugh, I laugh
You cry, I cry

You scream, I scream
You run, I run
You jump, I jump

You jump off a
bridge, I'm going to
miss you buddy"

-Anonymous

I serched funny poems on google and i came across this poem on some random website, and the poem had no author. I find this poem really relatable because best friend are connected at the hip and you do everything together. Best friends are the person you go to when you are scared you just need a good cry, and they will do it with you. Like "You cry, I cry". If your upset, im automactically upset. The last 3 lines are very sarcastic and thats what makes the poem funny. No matter what it is, you would never hurt your self, because your best friend told you to do something, you would advise them no to do it too.

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Re: Consortium Response 9: Your Pick!

Post  TeamDizzieKappa19 on Tue Jun 04, 2013 11:01 pm

http://www.all-story.com/issues.cgi?action=show_story&story_id=100

This story is called The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and is about a man who has an avid fantasy life and lives vicariously through that. The readers also get to see a look into his real life and we get to meet his wife who is really annoying and kind of bad to Walter. I chose this story because I loved it and it really spoke to me when I first read it in freshman year. It spoke to me because of its realism, and how there could be a story about a man with a not so happy life that wasn't about how awful his life is. This story barely mentions how unhappy he is, in fact he might not even be unhappy, but we get to see how this one man in particular copes with his reality. We get to see how one man is able to get through his day in a way that makes him smile.

Response to jemoria:
Wow, I love that poem. It makes me feel things which is always a good thing for a poem to do. It brings up emotions and memories and really makes me think deeply about what it is trying to say. It also really reminds me of this great Doctor Who quote that is, "Because every time you see them happy you remember how sad they're going to be. And it breaks your heart. Because what's the point in them being happy now if they're going to be sad later. The answer is, of course, because they are going to be sad later." And you're right, it isn't funny, but that is what makes this poem so amazing, the fact that it isn't funny... it's just true.

Response to 31544:
This story was beautiful, but also sad. The symbolism of the great work of the king of kings being eroded is obvious, but at the same time it is also a metaphor for the fact that no matter how much work is put into something, no matter how important it may be, it won't last forever. Eventually, something stronger and more permanent (such as the weather) comes and tears all of your hard work down.

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