lit_luminary (lit_luminary) wrote,

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SCI Arc Apocrypha

Since it's been a number of months (and because I just finished a song rework that was being uncooperative), I thought I ought to post again.  I hope to have more time for fandom again after the holiday season, but in the meantime, please enjoy the song rework and three short poems.

First, the song rework.  Call this "Nobody's Fault" in a not-quite-duet.

From a Distance
(to the tune of “Into the Fire” by Escape Key.)
Scene: House and Chase in the wake of Chase’s spinal cord injury.

Who’s to blame for calamity that no one ever planned?
Demand accounts, analysis, and try to understand.
And once you’ve judged me and condemned, explain just what you’ve won,
For none of what has happened here can ever be undone.

[House’s chorus:]

I planned a trial and a tragedy occurred,
So I watch him from a distance, cannot find a single word.
The grief and pain before him now, I only too well know.
His face looks as mine must have looked, so many years ago.

And who would better know than I of wounds that never heal?
I have lived the pain of waking to a nightmare all too real.
Again, there are no answers, no solutions in my reach.
The lessons that he’s learning now, I never meant to teach.

[House’s chorus]

Don’t tell me I’m a victim of the system House designed.
Don’t treat me like a child, act as though I went in blind.
There’s nothing that I did that day I hadn’t done before,
Or that I wouldn’t do again.  So don’t say any more.

[Chase’s chorus:]

I chose to take a risk.  A tragedy occurred.
Now my mentor watches through the glass and doesn’t say a word.
I see the understanding in his features clearly cast.
In him I see a future.  Does he look and see his past?

I don’t need others’ pity, and I don’t want his remorse.
All I can ask for is the map from one who’s walked the course.
I’m guessing now how much it cost—how hard he must have fought—
And just how very little all that bitter effort bought.

[Combined chorus:]

I chose to take a risk.  A tragedy occurred.
Now my mentor watches through the glass and doesn’t say a word.

The grief and pain before him now, I only too well know:
His face looks as mine must have looked, so many years ago

There are no words to offer, no neat phrase that could contain
A future torn and twisted, or a lifetime wracked with pain.
There is nothing I can give him; there’s no treatment I can try.
What am I supposed to say when comfort is a lie?

[Combined chorus]

So much to pay for choices—but that’s always been the case.
The past is locked behind me, and the future must be faced.
I’ve had my life upturned before; I’ll meet the pain ahead.
I know, when I’m uncertain, I can follow where I’m led.

Next, House's perspective on the events of the episode.  This one is unusual for me: I write very few villanelles, since this particular French verse form is difficult to render well in English.  It's also in second person, which I hadn't experimented with before.  Still, I'm pleased with the result.


There’s nothing left to say now, or to do
Against these accusations, each a stone:
You can’t escape the truth.  You always knew

Your methods—although tested, proven true—
Are often fraught with risk.  How to atone?
There’s nothing left to say now, or to do.

There’s not a cure or answer to pursue.
These are the simple facts of blood and bone
You can’t escape.  The truth you always knew,

And that denial couldn’t misconstrue
(Denial’s no escape; denial’s flown):
There’s nothing left to say now, or to do.

It’s sickening to think of him like you,
A cripple, hard and bitter and alone.
(You can’t escape.)  The truth?  You always knew

Just what he learned from what you led him through.
What could he do but reap what you had sown?
There’s nothing left to say now, or to do.
You can’t escape the truth you always knew.

Switching to Chase's perspective, this is a jump rope poem, set during his yet-unwritten rehab/recovery period.


This the wound, and these the scars
(Deadened nerves aren’t iron bars):
One lost gamble built this cage
(No use now to weep or rage);
No one promised life was fair
(What I’ve done is mine to bear).
See House watching, cane in hand
(Fight for calm, then fight to stand):
He’s the compass I can take
(I can bend.  I will not break.)
On a path both hard and strange
(Find the constant ‘midst the change).

No use now to weep or rage:
Fight for calm, then fight to stand;
Find the constant ‘midst the change.
I can bend.  I will not break.
What I’ve done is mine to bear.
Deadened nerves aren’t iron bars:
Life goes on despite these scars.

Finally, a triolet.  This is a form I learned relatively recently, but its circular structure seemed to suit the subject: Chase in early recovery, learning to manage a wheelchair.

Around Again

These wheels turn steadily, obey my hand,
As deadened legs cannot obey my will,
And will not heed my bitter wish to stand…
These wheels turn steadily, obey my hand.
My life is bounded now, and must be planned
Around the wounds beyond physician’s skill.
These wheels turn steadily, obey my hand,
As deadened legs cannot obey my will.
Tags: adaptations 'verse, filks, jump rope poem, poetry, triolet, villanelle
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  • 1 comment


November 27 2013, 20:36:12 UTC 4 years ago

I tried once to write poems about particular fandom first in russian then in english though the latter was much harder. So I know how not easy it can be and you did a spectacular job with that.
Now about each of the pieces:
I fell in love with From a distance. Not only it fits them so well but the words... I'm still singing 'In him I see a future. Does he look and see his past' again and again.
Parallels were a little hard for me to read/find the rhytm. But the meaning I love it, especially how House pondered what a lesson Chase got from him. The only one he didn't want to give.
Adapting on the contrary is very easy to d while it's much more simple than previous poems it expresses the situation pretty well. How it was one gamble that costed him so much and how the only thing he could do now was to be calm and strong. And one more thing about it: I don't know whether you did intentionally or not but two poems from Chase' POV are different. They are more blunt and tough (I hope I choose the right words to express myself) and there are some repetition in them. Those things alone describe Chase life after the incident very well. It's now a fight for him again and again in circles with only a hope that some day it'll be enough. While those with House are more philosophical and slow. Because there's nothing for him to do except for watching Chase and drowning in his own guilt.
It goes to Around again too. It has an unfamiliar structure for me but that gives the poem its unique beauty.