Birdman of Alcatraz

Birdman of Alcatraz (before a little edit)

Notorious inmates
Birdman born in Seattle
Murder incarceration
Solitary confinement
He studied canaries
Caged like them in his small cell
He let them fly freely
Like his mind behind bars
Never released

Birdman of Alcatraz (after)

Notorious inmate
Birdman born in Seattle
Murder in Alaska

Incarceration
Solitary confinement
He studied canaries


Caged in his small cell
He let them fly freely
Like his mind behind bars

____________________

dVerse prompt to edit a poem with concern for noun and verb; adjective and adverb. This was a spontaneous poem written on a postcard during August Postcard Poetry Festival.

Birdman of Alcatraz

15 thoughts on “Birdman of Alcatraz

  1. I like how you’ve given the “after’ poem shape by putting it into stanzas (which tells a story too) The subtle edits you’ve made – bring this familiar story into sharper focus – the mind freed, the body imprisoned. (Despite the Clint Eastwood film, I only twigged to ‘Birdman’ after reading this.) Thanks for sharing this terrific poem.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Both versions are very powerful and descriptive. I prefer the second version as it adds more color to the story in your poem, especially when comparing “Murder incarceration” and “ Murder in Alaska”. There’s something more haunting and startling with that line in the final revision. This is such a brilliantly composed piece, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Fantastic work.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The 3-line format works well for this, but I agree with Jane about the last line of the original. I don’t think it would hurt the revision to add it as a single-line stanza at the end.

    Like

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