Thursday, November 10, 2011

55 - Dust on the Bottle

 
My parents once bought me
a bottle of black label Jack, straight
from the home distillery
in Lynchburg, Tennessee, yet

all its promises were feel goods,
that ultimately left me empty, so

untouched & impotent,
collecting dust,
i finally
got rid of it

Tell me, by what
do you measure
'the truth' you
pour me?

This was written based on the following quote:

Only enemies speak the truth; friends and lovers lie endlessly, caught in the web of duty.
~Stephen King, Roland from "The Last Gunfighter"


Which I re-wrote poetically like this:

Only enemies speak the truth;

friends and lovers
lie endlessly,

caught
in the web of duty.

As part of today's challenge at dVerse Poets by our guest Zsa, to rewrite a piece of someone else's prose poetically then to make it our own poem.


Tell a story in 55 words. Give it a try or just read more, go see g-man.

85 comments:

Helen said...

Wow! What a challenge, you managed it beautifully. In Lexington KY I would choose Woodford Reserve, thank you very much!

Monkey Man said...

Empty calories. I'd much rather be filled with thought. Which I get coming here.

blueviolet said...

I'm not gonna turn down a glass of wine in the evening now and then. A little Pinot Grigio sits nice.

The Orange Tree said...

Tell me, by what
do you measure
'the truth' you
pour me?


love the ending lines,
a sip of wine that mixed with passions and questions.

the title is very charming!

Valerie said...

So, who do I trust... mine enemies?

happygirl said...

Wow, that is a challenge. It looks like dverse could school me. I need to find more time now that I know where to go. But, hey, if you find anymore Jack gathering dust around your house, give me a holler. :)

Sub-Radar-Mike said...

I thought Jack Daniels was distilled in Lynchburg, Tennessee...

itslovelyannie.com said...

soooooooo...I haven't finished my prose to poem piece yet, but it just so happens to be a Dark Tower selection as well...One of my favorite series of all time!

long days and pleasant nights Brian!

zongrik said...

Yes, the Jack Daniels distillery is not in Lexington. I got to go there for a tour once. It's very interesting. They have a high tech way of keeping track of everything, but still, the methods are the old ones.

And speaking of truth, the distillery itself is in a dry county. So what's the truth there?

itslovelyannie.com said...

Jim Beam is in Kentucky...Bardstown, KY

Orang3 said...

great ilustration by the way.

Sue said...

I liked it. All of it.

And the message I took from it.

=)

PS. Stephen King is my son's favorite writer. I think poeticized him well. ;)

Beachanny said...

I liked the poem (55) and the re-order of King's line. As usual pointed, pithy, and pertinent!

somewhereamelody said...

"all its promises were feel goods,
that ultimately left me empty, so

untouched & impotent,
collecting dust,
i finally
got rid of it"

Wonderful!!!

Ginny Brannan said...

Ah Brian, great job! Love your choice of the Dark Tower series, just finished reading that a few months agol

Jannie Funster said...

Well, I don't care to rewrite any of these fine words of yours here. Could never improve on them.

What about a kid, MY kid, who called my butt weird?? :) SO I've been exercising it lately! Reversing that mean old Mr. Gravity. :)

Out of the mouths of Babes, I guess... :) Truths from them indeed.

I have about 6 or so ounces in a bottle of whiskey I've had maybe 8 or 9 years. And that darn stuff usually lets me down. But maybe THIS year will be the charm with eggnog?? :) :)

xo

She Writes said...

I like that last stanza, Brian. I hope lovers don't truly lie, but fear they do.

Heaven said...

I love the re-writing and question at the end.

Also the word limitation makes this a challenging write which you do very well. I am still struggling with the prompt for D'verse.

Brian Miller said...

ack, shows how much i know...lol...ok, fixed the location...

chromapoesy.com said...

You really pack a punch in so few words. Now I feel I went overboard on the prompt :). Glad you're a Shelley fan.

Captain Dumbass said...

Nice work and nice quote. I love those books.

G-Man said...

You...Got rid of it? (THUD)

Fred said...

Cool piece, like both the way Stephen King's words are structured and your own piece on that quote. Very nice job.

hedgewitch said...

Sorry to miss the prompt at dVerse, bri--been out shopping for grandson's b'day all day. This was eloquent. Great Stephen King quote to pick.

♥ Braja said...

You've got to be kidding. My response to this would NEVER fit in a comment box :)) I loved it.

There's a very famous Vaisnava saint, Bhaktisiddhanta Swami, and he said once, "My enemies will compliment me, my friends will criticize..." and so I'm always dismissive of one who has a complimentary nature, which is superficial and dishonest. You know I don't mean that compliments are, but see what lies beneath. I'd prefer constructive criticism than compliments.

As for truth....phew....I love that first part....

Margaret said...

Clever! I'm hoping to do this tomorrow ...a 55 and the dVerse challenge. You knocked it out of the ball park tonight, Brian.

Laurie Kolp said...

I wanted to see how you tackled the challenge. I knew you'd inspire me to try... and you did.

manicddaily said...

I'm kind of glad I did mine before reading any one else's or I would feel very intimidated! You made it your own. k.

lime said...

ah, but in vino veritas, no?

but i do understand what you're saying and as always you say it so well.

Mama Zen said...

Very cool, Brian!

ayala said...

A cool write, Brian.

Pat Hatt said...

You know I forgot all about that quote. But it is true in a lot of ways, enemies have no need to pretty things up to make you feel good. Then again they go a bit overboard and embelish the bad, just a tad..haha

The Cello Strings said...

The way you reinvent poetry and ponder the honesty of words from lovers or friends is exactly what we overlook sometimes, yet absolutely necessary.

Truly love the image, it adds concrete comprehension to the message you try to convey.

Mind Blowing 55.
Keep Rocking.

;)

MomsJournal said...

I'd measure two ounces for a good drink, but since you threw it out I guess I'll be going somewhere else. :P

JANU said...

Beautiful...as always.

magiceye said...

absolutely brilliant take!

KB said...

I re-raad the Dark Tower Series earlier this year. Love what you did with the quote.

lifeisaroadtrip said...

Nice work, Brian! In vino veritas. :-)

PattiKen said...

The whole premise of a book I just read was "Everybody lies." I think that's true.

ds said...

Cool challenge! You executed it wonderfully and leaving me wondering who the real "liar" is here.
You are a master.

Steve E said...

"...by what
do you measure
'the truth' you
pour..."

...with ounce-and-a-quarter shot glass --of course!

Ann (bunnygirl) said...

It's hard to find the truth anywhere, much less in a bottle. Not that folks don't try.

Here's mine: Cat Show

Anyes said...

Hmmm, should we better trust our enemies then? So much to ponder today, Brian

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

Well done! You ended up with a good poem in its own right, which satisfied both prompts.

kaykuala said...

Beian,
You did full justice to both, it's no mean feat! Short and sweet!

Hank

adeeyoyo said...

It is because friends want you to feel good, Brian. But sometimes you can't believe a word they say. Well-intentioned, lol! Loved it all and the pic is great!

Claudia said...

smiles..love what you've done with the quote...just give your friends and lover enough wine and they will also tell you the truth...smiles...but still..truth talked by us humans is always relative..in vino veritas..and this takes me to...you will see where..hihi

Amy said...

Oh, Brian, Jack Daniels was an old friend of mine for many years, and I learned drinking at home with my parents... this is really potent (no pun intended), the dust collecting on the bottle. Great metaphor as well, rejecting those poor values.

Amy
http://sharplittlepencil.wordpress.com/2011/11/11/taxed-to-the-max-poetic-bloomings/

anthonynorth said...

Excellent musings in this.

Birdie said...

i always loved friends that were honest with me, yes i could count them on one hand though ... and i lost friends because of my honesty but i do prefer to be true to myself ... i think the important thing is how we (or them) tell the truth ... happy weekend Brian!

Friko said...

It depends on whether you consider the drop poured your friend or your enemy.

Dave King said...

Like it very much
but
friends and lovers
lie endlessly,

has a delicious ambiguity!

SueAnn said...

Well said Brian! It is so true!
Hugs
SueAnn

Brendan said...

I could never understand anyone who didn't finish their drink, much less the entire bottle. But that's my story ... yours says so much about truth in advertising, in spirits and in heart-blood. - Brendan

manicddaily said...

I so admire the way you combine different challenges! I pride myself on multi-tasking but can only usually take on one at a time. Ha. K.

izzy said...

Empty indeed, wise to leave it untouched ! I measure the truth I pour you -from study- a continuing
struggle to understand a haunted and war torn man...who happened to be a writer among many other things.

DJan said...

That picture is a perfect complement to this poem. You are so talented, Brian, and how you manage to do it AND comment on almost every blog post I read, I just cannot fathom how you bend the universal constant of time to your will.

Yousei Hime said...

Excellent quote choice (I'm envious of its brevity). I love how you reworked it. It's still there, hovering in the shadow of your words.

Akelamalu said...

Was that before it was a dry county? ;)

Love your words :)

ayala said...

Came back to re-read and to tell you that I love these lines....Tell me, by what
do you measure
'the truth' you
pour me?
:) Have a good weekend!

Eric 'Bubba' Alder said...

I wish I'd known you were looking to get rid of that bottle, Brian!

(All things in moderation, including moderation - LOL!)

Nice 55!

Magpie said...

Love the quote and your interpretation of it. Have a happy weekend!

Alice Audrey said...

I know there are a lot of people who do the lying thing, even with their closest friends and with family, but I've always done the tough love thing. It makes it easy to spot the false friends.

Mary said...

I love what you did with this challenge; and I think I am going to do mine over now. LOL. If I believed some of the words my 'enemies' have said, I would crawl in a hole. I would rather listen to my friends!

Aida Bode said...

Ouch - what a statement, and what a poem!

Tell me, by what
do you measure
'the truth' you
pour me?

or as Pilate put it:

"Qu'est-ce que la vérité"

zumpoems.com said...

Wow! Tremendous transformation/extension of the Stephen King!

"all its promises were feel goods" -- very clever.

Great last stanza!

You leave me guessing -- friend or foe -- love poems that leave an opening for further thought and exploration.


Enjoyed reading all the comments. I think this poem truly resonates!

Daniel said...

For some reason I missed this one yesterday. So, it aged a bit longer for me to better savor today.

Tabor said...

I must repeat that Stephen King writes so well, but I am not a fan of the horror genre and he dwells to much on violence.

Tino said...

It was after reading your piece yesterday that I managed to think of something. I liked the idea of a quote rather than someone elses writing, so thanks for that, hope you don't me borrowing the idea ;-)

RNSANE said...

Outstanding...though the thought of emptying a bottle of Jack down the drain fills me with great sadness, Southern belle that I am.

I really like that picture, too.

I am at:

http://rnsane.blogspot.com/2011/11/friday-flash-55-not-gone-but-forgotten.html

Sheila Moore said...

an impotent bottle of Jack - nice touch. Love the last stanza and the whole piece is an awesome poetic interpretation of the king quote.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Ah....that Roland was a man after my heart strings. You do him and yourself justice, Mr. Miller. Brilliant final stanza. Not much of life is about feeling good.

turtlememoir said...

nothing but feel-good promises in that stuff, that's for sure... and that is one loaded question you ask at the end

Other Mary said...

Excellent - your closing lines zing!

yellowhousecafe said...

Dang...you nailed both assignments, didn't you. Made me think of when I bought my bro a bottle of Templeton Rye (much coveted around here when a batch is made...he preferred his Crown)

Btw, great family pic! Good luck with the read!!

lori said...

On the first piece, my favorite part is the last stanza for sure. I could think on that for quite some time. And, I love that you chose Stephen King to work with, very fitting for you :) I was thinking on this quote, and I dearly treasure the few in my life that will tell it to me like it is even if I don't want to hear it. Honestly, none of us want to hear it all the time. I suppose the gift is to know how to speak the right truth at the right time. Great quote, and well done on both counts.

Teresa said...

Love this 55! I have to say I'm too familiar with the loved ones lying. Such a shame.

pandamoniumcat said...

All those empty promises in the bottle...you sum it up nicely...another great write!

Katherine Krige said...

I like where you took this Brian. It sounds like you should have mailed it to MI though. Not sure how long G is going to be out after reading your poetics today. :)

Fragrant Liar said...

I always go with "In vino veritas!" And there is certainly truth in that!

Lydia said...

Gads, you accomplished both the 55 and the dVerse Poets challenge in one. G-Man will probably not forgive me for not doing the same.

Your poem is powerful for me as one with decades of sobriety, who began her drinking life with well-intentioned) assistance from the parental units.
Your using a quote instead of a full scene is also damned powerful.

Kerry O'Connor said...

I love the way that 'parents' have become the enemy that spoke the truth... You own poem developed far beyond the original idea. Great piece, Brian.

Caty said...

I love Monkey Man's comment...agree with it totally :)

secret agent woman said...

I think the only reason there is sometimes veritas in the vino is that alcohol is a disinhibitor, encouraging some people to say what they would normally keep to themselves. And often not in a good way.

Syd said...

I used to drink Jack and ginger. But it doesn't hold much for me anymore. I'd rather take life neat.