My Rant Reply to Kenneth Clarke's Rant.

a writing by Denis Barter

I admit Kenneth, I too am one who seldom comments on “poetry” posted on VN, and for which, I have pangs of guilt regarding same, betimes. However, there are several factors that rule my days, and much as I would love the luxury of reading everything posted, I regret to say, my life is one mad dash (not quite so madly now I’m nearing my late 80's, but for me it seems like a gallop! Lol!) Okay, so it’s more of a shuffle than a gallop in which I indulge as I go from one chore to another. This also means reading for me, is a chore for which I regret to say, at present, is a very slow process believe you me it is not the only reason for my lack of responses, for I spend many hours doing necessary chores in my 2 acre garden - albeit very slowly, for I take great care not to trip or fall (four small ponds look inviting, but are hazards today!)!

Composing my own poetry, is ever a difficult task, as is answering e-mails from friends and cohorts on VN, - as indeed, is this comment on your Rant - is only possible because of improvements I have implemented lately, to my computer set-up. Largest monitors one can purchase (curved) have made a great difference, and oversized keyboards too. Chaning type size is another godsend, but still what I used to do in an hour, often takes me several hours! Excuses, excuses, excuses! Maybe?

However, one other factor comes into play as far as I’m concerned. Being an older - not ancient yet! - man, I was educated in a manner far different from (not to) what is acceptable today! With a diet of Shakespeare, Milton, Byron, not forgetting Hardy and Masefield, inter alia, I have taken an almost fanatical liking for Rhyme. Doubtless this factor has registered with many on VN? For me to pass comment on what I regard as ‘mind meanderings’ is never easy, and for me to spend - nearly said “waste” time on what I see mainly as ‘fancy comments’ is not high on my menu of ‘things to do’! Put it down to an ‘ancient’s’ stubborn attitude if you like, but I find so much is hard to understand. Criticism for and of contradictory offerings - I am ever polite and courteous no matter my inner feelings), is frowned upon and so I move on and keep my thoughts to myself. Better that, than have another hour or two of my precious time ‘censored’ by a Monitor who follows guidelines (what happened to “Free Speech”?) Not understanding my intention, is a luxury I cannot afford anymore! I even wonder if this reply of mine will be “passed?”

However, my final comment on your well said - ‘rant’ - is that I fully agree with much of what you say Kenneth. Encouragement - when given in a courteous and polite manner, together with helpful criticism - can often supply the needed impetus for a budding poet to continue writing with subsequent improvement. Personally I have no objection to reading a criticism of my own poetry, for I admit I am not ‘perfect’ by any means. However, if not offered in a polite manner? Then look out! I have a penchant (Viper’s tongue) for retaliation! LoL! Fondest regards and
enjoy yuour day. Ciao Denis aka Rhymer.

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