Sunday, July 13, 2014


This is an attempt to write a Crapsey cinquain.

Adelaide Crapsey (1878 - 1914) is remembered as the inventor of the cinquain. I think she is a very under-rated poet. Most modern anthologies of American poetry omit her. She has been called "a minor poet of great distinction". She died young, at the age of 36, and all of her mature work was published posthumously.

I love her cinquains. Brief as the lines are, there is music in there. Her cinquains are more of concrete images than emotions. But emotions there are, with tints of mystery, even sinister undertones. That the images are usually lovely and haunting, stark and contrasting, is a hallmark of her work. I have been trying to interpret her poem "Triad", and the opinion may be quite unexpected, but this may be the subject of another post. ;)

image from


The ceiling fan
Whirling slowly above.
In the dark, I hear the blades of


Are you afraid of spiders, or snakes and cockroaches? Shadows and the dark? Or is it yourself?
-- dsnake1

Shared on Poetry Pantry #209 at Poets United

© cheong lee san ( dsnake1 ) 2014

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Blogger R.K. Garon said...

A fine piece! Thanks for the FYI
...I know, I hear choppers every where.
As well as for the fear thing? Oil the fan :-)
So glad to see you back with the vagabonds :-)

13 July, 2014 23:40  
Blogger Sherry Blue Sky said...

You made me hear the sounds.....

14 July, 2014 00:06  
Blogger dsnake1 said...


vagabonds? ah, yes! and i forgot. oil the damn fan! :D


thank you! it's meant to evoke the senses, especially the aural type. :)

14 July, 2014 00:15  
Blogger Sumana Roy said...

i hear the sound of darkness moving. ...eerie...

14 July, 2014 01:31  
Blogger Brian Miller said...

yikes....sounds like a Nam flashback...old warriors, habits die hard...

14 July, 2014 02:03  
Blogger Mary said...

Oh, indeed ceiling fans are like choppers....I definitely see and feel the parallel in your poem!

14 July, 2014 02:16  
Blogger Nataša Dolenc said...

only sound..says so much.

14 July, 2014 02:39  
Blogger Gillena Cox said...

very successful write, nice cinquain, have a good Sunday

much love...

14 July, 2014 04:12  
Blogger G L Meisner said...

Very simple and evocative. I like it.

14 July, 2014 05:15  
Blogger dsnake1 said...


eerie? it could have been insomnia. :)


definitely! Apocalypse Now inspired this. :)


glad you did that. :)


in writing this cinquain, i try to bring out what is the sound that is the loudest in a room at night. it may not be the loudest in terms of decibels, but the most overpowering sound.


thank you, nice to see you around. :)

G L Meisner,

thank you for the visit. :)

14 July, 2014 15:01  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very thought provoking. And I enjoy the parallel as well... I had never thought of a ceiling fan similar to chopper blades before. Thank you for the new outlook.

15 July, 2014 04:03  
Blogger Susan said...

Yes, indeed. I see and feel the proximity.

15 July, 2014 04:43  
Blogger dsnake1 said...


thanks, just my idle mind wandering. :)


thank you! even a claustrophobic feeling too, after a few reads. :)
this is one of the more satisfying poems i have written, imo.

15 July, 2014 22:39  

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