Friday, September 05, 2008

The Ensemble, by Floyd Skloot

It seems like every time I read a poem by Floyd Skloot I like it. Today's example is on Poetry Daily: "The Ensemble."

I love the way it approaches Shakespeare without too much awe and reverence, but also without too much ambition; the poem seems pitched at just the right level. And, as Rob points out, the rhymes are delicious, as are the line breaks.

Gonna have to get me a Skloot collection one of these moons.


Joannie Stangeland said...

I, too, thought it was delicious--and the rhythm and rhyme were so much a part of the poem that I didn't even notice the rhymes on my first reading until I reached the last two lines. Then I went back to find them, and I enjoyed the poem even more. It goes on my list of things I'd like to write.

Andrew Shields said...

I also noticed the rhyming only late in my first reading of it! I like the effect of such subtle rhyming.

Still (and this is not a comment on this poem, but on how people talk about rhyme), I disagree with those who think that rhyme should always be this subtle. They think "noticeable" rhyme is bad per se, while I think that rhyme sometimes works best when it IS noticeable.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the introduction to Skloot and "Ensemble" ...

Here's a 'significant' piece of info about Skloot, that I found on Amazon just now:

"In December 1988 Floyd Skloot was stricken by a virus that targeted his brain, leaving him totally disabled and utterly changed. =In the Shadow of Memory= is an intimate picture of what it is like to find oneself possessed of a ravaged memory and unstable balance and confronted by wholesale changes in both cognitive and emotional powers. Skloot also explores the gradual reassembling of himself, putting together his scattered memories, rediscovering the meaning of childhood and family history, and learning a new way to be at home in the world. Combining the author’s skills as a poet and novelist, this book finds humor, meaning, and hope in the story of a fragmented life made whole by love and the courage to thrive."

Actually, that quote is from just one of several 'editorial reviews' Amazon has of
=In the Shadow of Memory= ... I read all
the reviews, and they accomplished their presumed purpose, of convincing me I'd
like to read the whole book ...

-- dhsh :D))

Andrew Shields said...

I'd come across the same thing and ordered that very book, along with two collections of his poetry.

Check out his website at for even more interesting sounding books.