“We Sit There For What Feels Like Hours”

One lazy afternoon, following another discussion with my Girlfriend, and a viewing of the film Howl, we decided to try our hand at poetry.
My Girlfriend is far more poetic and flowery with her words than I am, and so I knew I had to come up with something quite unique in order to not face being laughed at.
What I decided on was, what I believe to be, creating an art form of poetry.
We were to find a well known book, flip to a page within that book and look at a sentence or a handful of sentences, using these, already famous lines, to create our poetry. The line/s we chose would be expanded upon and a short poem would come from the authors words.
The example we settled on was from the book “Before I Go To Sleep” written by S. J. Watson.
As is obvious by the title of this post, the sentence we choose was “We sit there for what feels like hours”.
Here I will post what I wrote, and after I will show why I feel this was particularly poetic.

Original Sentence –
“We sit there for what feels like hours”

My Poem –
Together we sat, unconsciously waiting
Forever we sit, unmoving, uncaring,
Ever after we will seat,
Concrete pyramids of time located exactly,
rooted to the spot,
anchored through the skin and fur of leopards,
at that moment,
in that space,
we are ignorant,
ignorant of time but expert in feeling,
for hours felt like days,
four hours, five hours, six, seven,
and so a week shall pass.

I didnt think this was a particularly good piece of writing but then I looked at it more closely. I looked at it and analysed what I had said, the words I had used, and the methods of writing within the text.
I shall explain them to you here.

The end of the last word on the first line ends in “___ing”, as does the end of the two last words on the second line, “___ing” and “___ing”.
The first three lines contain each of the words “Sat”, “sit”, and “seat”. This is the past, present and future. Indicating the passing of time, which is the underlying theme in the original sentence, and is a common theme of my poem.
The last word of the first line “waiting” also rhymes with the last word on the second line “uncaring”.
The first word on the first line end in “___er”, as does the first word on the second line “___er”, and the first and second words on the third line “___er ____er”.
On the fourth, fifth and sixth lines the words “concrete”, “pyramids”, “rooted” and “anchored” all imply no movement. A feeling of being stationary.
The original sentence in the book includes “..for what feels like hours”. This shows an uncertainty of time, it may feel like hours, but she doesnt know it actually is hours. This explains my line “ignorant of exactitude…”. The ignorance is also juxtaposed with the use of the word “expert” later in the line.
The twelfth line counts up to seven to signify seven days, this explains the use of “week shall pass” in the thirteenth line.
On the thirteenth line, “shall pass” is used to imply that they are still waiting, it has not passed yet. Again a return to the theme of time.
The use of the word “hours” in the original sentence really allowed a lot of material to be played with. On the eleventh line there is the obvious use of hours feeling like days, but by starting it with “for hours…” this allowed me to have a play on the word “for” as well. The next line, the twelfth, used the different spelling of the word, “four” and used it to begin counting. “four hours, five hours…” Once again showing the passing of time and including a play on “for/four”.
As is clear, the passing of time is a recurring theme in my poem and this can be seen with the use of past, present and future tense words, and various other examples, “Forever”, “time”, “waiting”, “that moment”, “hours”, “days”, 4, 5, 6, 7, “week”. They are scattered throughout the poem so the theme runs through it all, not just certain parts. The use of the word “pyramid” on line four, not only gives a sense of lack of movement but once again hints at time, as the pyramids have been around for thousands of years, standing the test of time. The pyramids standing is then contrasted with the opening three lines where it says “we sat”, “we sit” and “we will seat”.
On the fifth line the use of the phrase “rooted to the spot” was used, but I deliberately avoided the usual tree analogy. Its to obvious to link the word “root” with trees. Instead I looked to link the other main word in that phrase in the fifth line, this being “spot”. I linked this to the word that ends the sixth line, “leopards”. Spots on leopards. I used the plural and not the singular so it continued the theme of collective words.
Collective words are also seen throughout the poem, use of the word “we” and “together”.
At the start of the second line and the beginning of the third I split a familiar phrase “forever and ever”, making “forever” the opening word on the second line, and “ever” the opening word on the third.
Also, in lines one and two is the repetition of the prefix “Un___”, with “UNconsciously”, “UNmoving” and “UNcaring”.

That is about all really.
From that one line in a book came a thirteen line poem from myself, and that has resulted in this fairly lengthy analysis. I hope you can now see why I was particularly pleased with the poem I had written.


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