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Joe Ehret

Dark Forest by Devon Phipps

Excellent
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I really like the ambiguity here. It calls my name, It wants to play. You don't tell us what it is or why it wants you. Just that it exists and then you craft a heavy air of dread around it. This is a really good example of starting from a central kernel and then building it up. It also ends well, shifting from that thick dread to the corrupted serenity and leaving the reader to wonder what will become of the protagonist.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 15-Dec-2013

Christmas Crackers by DARRYL ASHTON

Excellent
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You're definitely not the only one with a bone to pick with the Christmas season haha. My friends and I complain about it all the time. There's nothing worse than working retail during the holiday season and hearing Christmas music before Thanksgiving. It's a nightmare.

You do a good job of wrapping up the insanity that the holiday has become in this poem. Good flow and jokes sprinkled here and there keep it light enough to avoid rant status without taking away from the fact that you do mean what you say. Well done.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 15-Dec-2013

Unfinished Poems by Warren Rodgers

Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level

I loved this poem. I'm not much of a poet myself, but I can really relate to the subject matter. I have pages and pages and pages of unfinished stories and even more pages than that that aren't even stories, just ideas and fragments and thoughts.

Your imagery here is great (showers spritzing, homeless poems, constant internal churning), giving the whole poem a really tactile feel. Great work.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 14-Dec-2013

Biggest Lie in America by Matthew M.

Excellent
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Ha! This is quite clever. It's hard to do a whole lot with just ten words (at most), but you pull it off. This makes me think of an animated math problem with white gloved hands writing itself out on a chalk board, kinda like the DNA guy from Jurassic Park haha.

Good luck in the contest.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 12-Dec-2013
Read and reviewed with blinders on.

The Christmas Bird by RodG

Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted

Simple and to the point. It gives the reader a nice, clear image to hold onto. "Snowy boughs" and "chirping Christmas cheer" are both really good turns of phrase.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 10-Dec-2013
Read and reviewed with blinders on.

Toying With Ouija by Millibrad

Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted

I'm a fan of supernatural fiction of all sorts (books, short stories, movies, games, etc) and so I'm intrigued by the non-fiction side of the supernatural. Seeing how people react and interact with these experiences is always interesting.

One little nitpick here. Ru "advises" your sister about the curse, but I don't think advises is the best word for the situation, it feels too detached. Ru is the one cursing her family, she wouldn't just advise her about it, she would tell her or warn her or threaten her. Something more active is what I'm looking for, personally.

I'd also like you to expand on a couple points. What was the blessing ritual you went through? What was that second, longer conversation with Ru like? These are fairly significant details that could really enrich the tale. When I read those sections they seemed glossed over and I really felt a lack there. Gimme more.

You've got an engaging story to tell here. The first encounter with that group of spirits was quite disturbing and the ambiguity of the curse gave me something to think about after the story ended.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 08-Dec-2013

Symmetry by catch22

Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted

There's some really good word choices in here and I like the actions near the end--distorting, morphing, merging.

I like the decision to go free verse here. The lack of punctuation, capitalization, and the varied structure (number and length of lines) plays nicely off of the neat, orderly title.

All-in-all, a very simple image is taken and used to express something very complex.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 08-Dec-2013

Resisting Cacophony by evrenios

Excellent
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This really reminds me of that feeling when you wake up and, whether it's the remnants of a vivid dream or just a unique moment of perspective, inspiration strikes and I immediately pick my pen and notebook up off my bedside table and start scribbling furiously. I imagine that's exactly what you're going for and you hit the mark here.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 08-Dec-2013

curmudgeon by evrenios

Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level

That'll show those rabbits what for!

This was a whole lotta fun to read. A fun twist on an old, well known story. Not much more to say other than really good work.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 08-Dec-2013

Grandpa's on the road again by evrenios

Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted

I love how you sprinkle some more technical words in among the almost playful flow of the poem. Not only does it ground the poem in the science of the matter, but fitting such strange words in shows good control of the language.

Not to mention that Grandpa being emboldened by his progress through the game is a great image that stuck with me after I finished reading.
Comment Written by Joe Ehret on 08-Dec-2013


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