One other item I might offer for consideration is to reformat your stanzas/verses into longer lines that consistently end in rhymes. Many "standard" verses will follow a rhyming pattern such as ABAB or AABB or ABCBC, etc. What you have here appears folded in half to fit the page. This is completely valid and I suspect it is so that larger fonts can be used for younger eyes? But it is done at the expense of losing a recognizable pattern. Critics might shred that. However, as long as the flow is smooth, I like it just fine.
For example, this...
A Oh, please be kind and gentle B To the creatures that you eat. C Choose hens that come from happy farms B If you love your chicken meat.
A Some hens are put in awful places B We call them factory farms. C They crowd them in so they can’t move B And cause the poor hens harm.
A Most Some pigs which make the pork you eat B Spend lives in awful pain. C They live in dumps with concrete floors, B It really is a shame.
A They put the mother in a crate B To feed the little piglets small. C Mum cannot turn, can hardly move. B It's no picnic at all!
...could be reformatted to AABB in a heptameter thusly:
A Oh, please be kind and gentle to the creatures that you eat! A Choose hens that come from happy farms (if you love chicken meat). B Hens are put in awful places we call factory farms. B They crowd them in so they can’t move and cause the poor hens harm.
A Pigs which make the pork you eat spend lives in awful pain. A They live in dumps with concrete floors (it really is a shame). B They put the mother in a crate to feed the piglets small.
B Mum can't turn, can hardly move - it's no picnic at all!
This removes much of the chance that a reader will misinterpret the intended scansion, and will also hide non-rhymes. Here is an example where I reformatted shorter lines to fit a page size and the result made embedded rhymes at rhythmic pauses in each line. This was originally written as ABAB:
A I've drunk the cup of misery
B In cruel, cold defeat A I've danced the dance of victory
B The vanquished at my feet
A And on a hundred beaches
B I have sifted through the sand A And felt the work of eons<<<< Ok, it doesn't rhyme. Sue me!
B Trickle through my open hand.
A I've lived in deprivation
B And in splendored marble halls A I've danced with grim starvation
B And I've tasted nearly all
A The pleasures that great riches
B Can procure at ransom's price A And yet my soul still itches
B For that one elusive vice:
Later, I needed to condense this 2-page section to fit a single page so I reformatted thusly, with the result that the line which didn't rhyme was now hidden. My ABAB turned into AABB and frankly, I like it better this way:
A I've drunk the cup of misery in cruel, cold defeat. A I've danced the dance of victory, the vanquished at my feet. B And on a hundred beaches I have sifted through the sand B And felt the work of eons trickle through my open hand. <<< Poor rhyme hidden.
A I've lived in deprivation and in splendored marble halls. A I've danced with grim starvation and I've tasted nearly all B The pleasures that great riches can procure at ransom's price B And yet my soul still itches for that one elusive vice:
Maggie: The little excerpt is taken from the preface to my SPACE: An Odyssey in Rhyme. It was originally written in one of the later chapters when one of our hero's (who is prone to poetic outbursts) breaks into song/rhyme during a solemn interlude. Instead, I used it as a one-page counterpoint letter to one written by another of our hero's. This sets the stage for the book the way the spinning champagne bottle against the background stars sets the stage for one of the Star Trek movies. I think. I hope.
You can read the whole preface in the preview on Lulu if you like.
This latest article was extremely interesting. Factory farming is linked to the coronavirus.
Factory farming has been linked to zoonotic diseases which are infectious organisms like the coronavirus. Zoonotic diseases can transfer from animals to humans. Crowded, unsanitary living conditions and the overuse of antibiotics among livestock create a breeding ground for certain diseases to flourish. Hog factory farms may also be a cause for concern, Gregory Gray, an infectious disease epidemiologist at Duke University, told Scientific American. Pigs and humans have similar immune systems, so it’s easy for diseases to cross between the two species. Looking for novel coronaviruses in pigs should be a “top priority” given the scale of factory farming, Gray added Experts believe the coronavirus originated from a seafood market in Wuhan, China, which also sold wild game meat. More than 410,000 have been infected and over 18,000 have died, according to the Worldometers website, which tracks the virus in real-time.
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