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Words by Bark

Poetry by 91816119

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Submitted on
April 11, 2013
Submitted with Writer


1,339 (4 today)
25 (who?)

A thousand bags
shuffle down the high street between 
clasped hands, scrunched with new purchase. 
They’re buggy-dodging the determined mothers, 
leftward stepping 
the rushed businessmen-- a pinball
machine shopping centre.

A green-robed man, tall with wand and hood
must be a wizard. He’s happily
procuring sushi and sparkling water
whilst his companion; 
short with her piercings and jeans treats him
as if he wore the same.

Down the high street, 
two track-suited parents
zoom past on their children’s scooters—
half-smoked fags between fingers yell
how fucking amazing this is.

and a
spotted teen raps 
his love for Jesus on a muffled
He raps for the Father,
He raps for the Son
 and Holy Spirit. 
He raps for peace, for hope, for you.

In a corner, 
Brown eyes, hefty tears,
a snot-ridden face--
four years old. 

A train runs through the mall toot-tooting
as grumpy shoppers move out of the way.

A pigeon
A one legged pigeon
with purple feathers
steals chips from the ground.
She hops blissful from each morsel to the next 
before other pigeons steal her treat.

Outside the bank 
an angry mother grabs 
and spanks her wailing son.

A boom of feathers
and panic;
Schoolboys run and flick


it’s his fault her eyes wandered to her phone.
it’s his fault he wandered off. 

I wish in a way this was more about the guy dressed as a wizard than the lost child. Just a typical day observing whilst out shopping in town!

Minor edits 18/05/13
Major edit 21/05/13 with thanks from =futilitarian and ^neurotype
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I like the potential in this. Like neurotype says there are a couple of typos and the line breaks aren't really working right all the way through. I won't go through that in nitpicky detail though because this feels like an early draft or idea sketch right now (when chat's working again I'll go through it line by line if you like, I just don't want to do it here in case you still plan major edits).

I'd like to see more poetic technique underpinning the narrative. Like the rapping could be more rhythmic, there could be more impact to the pigeons taking flight. I think that the ending could be a lot more resonant and I always, always want more sonics and wordplay in a piece like this.

I like the observations and I like the detail but at present it lacks direction or some kind of overarching cohesiveness. I think you need to decide whether this is about the wizard or the child or the pigeons or what. There are parts - like the wizard and the parents on their kids' scooters - that make this seem unreal and slightly fantastical rather than merely anecdotal. I would suggest that if you want the wizard to make an impact you need to ground the piece in the mundane before you introduce him. Otherwise I'm expecting fantasy and the rest becomes, actually, something of a let down.

The ratings are vague, wishy washy and (by me) inconsistently applied. :) Still I think you should work on this because it could be cool.
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
6 out of 6 deviants thought this was fair.

Well you were right~ I was pretty crazy to take on 50 critiques:giggle: Sorry it's taken me so long to get to yours!…

I read this poem when you first posted it (before your major edit), and I remember really loving the imagery here! It's really easy to imagine exactly what you're describing, and I love that in poetry! The cadence you have going is wonderful to read - I bet it's gold when read aloud! I can't really remember, but did you have this classified as spoken word before your major edit? Either way, this is a very intriguing read! I especially like how you made the shopping bags into characters in your first stanza - very clever!:D

Vision: I love how much culture is packed into this piece. So many different people who are so different from each other, but though the individual snapshots are clear and unique, they have commonalities, and having those throughout the poem gives it an interesting tone.

Originality: People watching is so fun, especially because you get so many glimpses into so many different people's lives! I think you did a really good job of capturing each snap-shot moment of the people you saw, with unique, interesting and appropriate word choice.

Technique: Besides the wonderful description, I think the best thing about this piece is its rhythm. Like most free verse poetry, it has a unique flow and cadence, and then since it's also a spoken word poem, there's an added beat to the words that lends more of a structured feel to its format. One grammatical thing I noticed: in the stanza about the pigeon, you've written "she hops blissful to each morsel to the next" - I think you'll want to change that first "to" to a "from" (I hope that wasn't too confusing...).

Impact: As the poem progresses, there's a pattern of each stanza describing one scenario each, but they get shorter and more candid, though no less vivid, and I think that really adds significance to your ending. Throughout the poem, you have complete sentences with capitalized beginning words and the right ending punctuation, but that also gradually falls away towards the end. It gives the last couple of stanzas a more raw feel, and that goes really well with the content of those stanzas.

I really enjoyed reading and analyzing this poem, and I hope my critique is helpful to you!:D
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
1 out of 1 deviants thought this was fair.

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GrimFace242 Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2014   Writer
I love people watching and creating stories for those I see.  This seems like a perfect representation of sitting on a bench and watching everyone that goes by.

The only spot I fumbled with the words was here: "She hops blissful to each morsel to the next"  is just seems like that first "to" should be a "from" but that's just personal opinion.
Beccalicious Featured By Owner Oct 5, 2014   Writer
You know its taken me ages to get to this comment but finally I have made the amendment! well spotted, thank you :D
inmyroom Featured By Owner Nov 18, 2013
This has some very interesting description in it. You really set the scene of a typical English shopping centre during rush hour. (buggy dodging.. this is why I mainly shop online now!). I really enjoyed the 'f' bomb you chucked in there. Has such impact when used in the correct way.

Sammur-amat Featured By Owner Jun 19, 2013   General Artist
a little late but congratulations on the DLD, dear friend! :huggle:
alapip Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
you exist in an interesting place
with vision and mind to match,

nice DLD!

rlkirkland Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
...and a DLD! :)
Congratulations. :sun:
TeaRoses Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2013
I like this. I definitely had a mental picture while reading it, and I like all the dynamic imagery.
DailyLitDeviations Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2013
Your wonderful literary work has been chosen to be featured by =DailyLitDeviations in a news article that can be found here: [link]

Be sure to check out the other artists featured and show your support by :+fav:ing the News Article. Keep writing and keep creating.
Beccalicious Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2013   Writer
Thank you very much :)
GileadsBalm Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2013
A spotted teenager? I know it probably has no connection whatsoever, but it reminds me of a Pink Floyd song. A racist, anti-semitic protagonist is yelling for people to get up against the wall for looking Jewish, for being black, for smoking a joint, and the last (probably so that you know it's just the character who's a bigot) is somebody with spots.

What were you thinking when you wrote it?
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