ROUND ONE: 7-espouse vs. 10-asymmetric


Click here for authlete instructions.

Voter Instructions:

  • The countdown at the bottom of each pairing indicates how much time is left to vote.
    • When voting closes, timer will disappear.
  • Read both poems as many times as you like.
  • Mark the poem you like best by clicking the circle next to its name.
  • Press the “Vote” button to record your vote.
  • Votes are counted in real time and cannot be changed once entered.
  • You can only vote once from a given IP address.
    • Classrooms should submit one vote as a class.
    • Students can then vote again individually from home.

Things to Consider in Making a Choice:

  • How well the poem incorporates the authlete’s assigned word.
  • Technical elements: meter, rhyme, form, shape, and other poetic standards.
  • Creativity: wordplay, imagery, unusual approach, etc.
  • Subtle elements that make the whole greater than the sum of its parts.
  • Your overall response: emotional reaction such as admiration, tears, laughter, terror, or some indefinable feeling.

Here are the poems:

7-espouse
Loaded Verses at Dawn
By Susan Taylor Brown

Beware the skirmish just begun, poetic lines are drawn,
my dictionary and thesaurus whimper on the lawn.

Broken pencils surround my bed, red ink stains all the sheets,
I need to channel Dr. Seuss or Silverstein or Keats.

My garbage bucket overflows with pithy paper bits,
while bloody blisters fill my hands like rows of zombie zits.

For the poetry I espouse I’ll make myself the clown,
I’ll wrestle any word you want and take that big wolf down.

vs.

10-asymmetric
A Perfect Pair
By Allan Wolf

My feet are asymmetric, so
no pair of shoes will ever fit.
The left one is a bit too tight.
The right has room to spare.

By miracle genetic, though,
my sister’s just the opposite.
We may be asymmetric
but we make two perfect pairs.

 




7-espouse vs. 10-asymmetric

  • 7-espouse (Susan Taylor Brown) (62%, 149 Votes)
  • 10-asymmetric (Allan Wolf) (38%, 90 Votes)

Total Voters: 239

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  • http://www.ericode.com Eric Ode

    I am looking forward to this match-up! Wishing you both well!

  • http://susantaylorbrown.com Susan Taylor Brown

    Thanks, Eric. How about sending some poetic pixie dust in my general direction? :) I’m quaking over here.

  • http://www.allanwolf.com Allan Wolf

    I just noticed how much larger my right ear is than my left.

  • http://susantaylorbrown.com Susan Taylor Brown

    I actually had a rough draft of something that almost resembles a poem before I went to bed last night. It’s the title, of all things, that I’m tripping over now.

  • http://www.quinettecook.com Quinette Cook

    Titles are so important, but often overlooked. I know you will find just the right one, Susan.
    This is going to be a great match up.

  • http://www.dorainebennett.com Doraine Bennett

    Touche, Susan. This was a perfect pair-up. I want to vote for both!

  • Donna

    Love them both — voted .. Best of luck to both of you!

  • http://www.buffysilverman.com Buffy Silverman

    I think we just witnessed a duel! Great job, both of you.

  • http://tabathayeatts.blogspot.com/ Tabatha

    Great job, both of you!! I don’t know which one to vote for — that is the best kind of problem :-)

  • Elizabeth Brahy

    Aaargh! Can’t choose, must choose…

  • http://www.allanwolf.com Allan Wolf

    Hey, hey, hey now, Susan. This is getting sorta personal isn’t it? I wish I would have worked “Brown” Chuck “Taylors” into my poem somehow!

  • http://www.NoWaterRiver.com Renee LaTulippe (@ReneeMLaTulippe)

    Ooh, fightin’ words! Well played, both of you.

  • http://susantaylorbrown.com Susan Taylor Brown

    ooh, Brown Chuck Taylors, I have no doubt you would have been able to do so and make me laugh in the process. No hard feelings, I hope?

  • http://www.quinettecook.com Quinette Cook

    Well, I wasn’t disappointed. What a match up! Kudos to both of you, but look out everyone, I think Susan is out to spill more red ink!

  • http://Thinkinginrhyme.blogspot.com Melinda Harvey

    Noooo! I hate to see either of you eliminated! Susan, I love how you used Allan’s name- clever and well played!

  • http://readingyear.blogspot.com Mary Lee

    Susan’s wrestling the words and Allan can kick ‘em! (““Brown” Chuck “Taylors”” HA!!)

  • http://www.poemfarm.amylv.com Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

    This. Was. Hard.

  • http://www.allanwolf.com Allan Wolf

    I initially voted for my own poem (gasp! did he really say that out loud?) out of knee-jerk hubris and because it’s kinda like a mother rooting for her skinny-armed son timidly stepping up to the T-ball. Now I kinda wish I could take it back. I would consider it an honorable discharge to be knocked out by a well-written poem that actually immortalized my name.

  • http://jlielarios.blogspot.com Julie Larios

    Nice going, both of you – you’ve made it hard for people to choose. Allan, I love that rhyme scheme!! (ABCD/ABCD) The ear hears it, the eye almost misses it. Very subtle. I’m going to give it a try soon.

  • http://www.laurasalas.com laurasalas

    Oooh, Susan, a throw down! And Allan–so funny (PS, I love love love WATCH). You guys rock.

  • http://www.allanwolf.com Allan Wolf

    Thanks for noticing the rhyme scheme, Julie. The idea was to set up the ABCD pattern but then break it. So instead of ABCD/ABCD it ends up being ABCD/ABED. And the E is a near-rhyme of B. In other words the rhyme scheme is actually slightly “asymmetric.”

  • Marcus Ewert

    I like these both- and yay- good meters in each!
    (There’s nothing more grating than a clunky rhythm, IMHO!)
    Well done, folks!

  • http://susantaylorbrown.com Susan Taylor Brown

    Allan thanks for the kind words and most of all, thanks for explaining the rhyme scheme to me! I knew it was something but I didn’t know what! This is such fun.

  • http://julielarios.blogspot.com Julie Larios

    Ah, that is SO cool, Allan – the slightly askew rhyme scheme. I was giving “tight” and “asymmetric” a pass because the “i” connected them for me, visually if not audibly. But with what you actually did, form and content combine perfectly – gad, I love to see that kind of control. You are a Master Craftsman!

  • http://www.robynhoodblack.com Robyn Hood Black

    I knew this would be a gallant throw down. (Can I spin around, close my eyes, and click? Arrrghh!) Great job, both of you.

  • http://www.thinkkidthink.com Ed DeCaria

    Oh, I don’t want to see Allan go …
    But I long to see STB stay!
    But no Allan, no …
    But yay Susan, yay!
    But Allan, oh Allan, my Allan, sweet Allan …

    Why must it be this way?

  • Dom D

    Allan, you got my vote for precisely the rhyme scheme that you executed. Great job and sorry to see you go so soon.

    STB – I loved your poem, and it’s easy to see why you’re killing it right now. However, I must admit, I imagine you doing a YouTube of this where you are on a stage, thrusting your hand in the air with each syllable, and when you finish the last line you raise your arms and drop the microphone to the clapping of your fans and the horrific feedback from the monster amplifiers that sit at stageside. And then, all I can think of is the line from Coming to America… “that boy good!”.

  • http://www.allanwolf.com Allan Wolf

    I feel like I got whipped fair and square. I’m used to paying good money for a whipping like that. But somebody’s gotta come up on the short end of the stick. Someone has to wear the red shirt whenever the Star Trek crew gets into a tussle at the beginning of each episode. And this way I can fully devote myself to a little trash talk! Though it’s not gonna be nearly as much fun with Pincus out of the running.

  • http://susantaylorbrown.com Susan Taylor Brown

    Thanks for the battle, Allan, twas fun.

    Now I’m going to tear your poem apart and study that rhyme scheme! Well played, indeed!

  • Hannah Ruth Wilde

    Aha! My English class may be sick of me saying, “know the rules so you can break them.” Allan, you rebel!

    ps. Are you guys out there doing your homework and voting?

  • Hannah Ruth Wilde

    Extra credit to any student who sites this post!

  • Hannah Ruth Wilde

    Oh, sorry everyone, extra credit IF you site this post and EXPLAIN it. :)