I added and improved on the original though the main joke - Dylan Thomas a drinker ruined by poetry - is not
my idea but thought it could be considered now.
RomArtus*Imperator ® (Orate) 18:51, March 4, 2010 (UTC)
OK, I quite enjoyed this one, having only cursory knowledge of the gentleman from my English literature studies. A couple of things did strike me about it that I think you should take a second look at. The first thing that struck me is to do with the running joke which, as you say above, is the idea of switching drink and poetry around, I like this idea it keeps the article original and is exactly the sort of thing that articles that have little new to offer in terms of subject matter should include, my problem is that it can be quite hard to follow in places. What I mean when I say that it is quite hard to follow is that at times I felt like the justification for the two being switched round was difficult to comprehend. If I could expand on this, it is an excellent idea to switch two things around like that but you need to remember that while this is incorrect in itself everything else that surrounds it should not be just left as it is, if you are going to suggest that poetry is harmful and that drinking is a beneficial and indeed, an activity that can be sanctioned on those afflicted by poetry by local government, as you suggest here "Eventually the local council stopped Thomas's avian fantasies and told him to either go back to liquor or be part of an educational programme to warn young intelligent people of the dangers of free-form poetry" you have to explain the roles that each of these items play when swapped round. The point I am attempting laboriously to get to is that you need some context for the two, not much of a context but simply a sentence where you explain to the reader that writing poetry is considered as damaging as alcoholism in the context of your article, and perhaps a word about how this works in other ways. I'm not suggesting you fill me in on the history of poetry as a potentially harmful substance, but rather you try saying something similar to this: "As a young boy Thomas demonstrated a real liking for Iambic Tetrameter, one of the more potent brews available. Various attempts by his parents to encourage him to drink copiously failed and Thomas would often sneak out at night to do blank verse with friends behind the bike sheds" Now what I have written there may not be the zenith of creative humour, but I hope it gets the point I am trying to make across, a bit more demonstration of the swap early on would not only provide scope for some more humour early on, but would also give the jokes later on a bit more impact, especially if you played up the idea that poetry is a near illicit substance.
Moving on from complaining about that the rest of the humour is pretty enjoyable, though at times you do have a tendency to trip over yourself a bit as the narrative becomes quite confused, for instance when you say: "Thomas progressed into a fully fledged poet, even though he couldn't fly or had yet acquired a covering of feathers." this sets up a good joke and one that I found particularly amusing but it didn't make that much sense to me, am I missing something important? I suspected that it was supposed to be drawn from 'fully fledged' but the link is a bit too tenuous for me and I thought that while the joke after is good it doesn't come off as well because of this. I'm not suggesting you delete the entire joke but rather consider whether the start could not be done differently, unless of course I am missing something, in which case I invite you to come to my talk page and verbally abuse me for wasting all this space. I like the list at the end too, I think it holds a lot of extra humour for anyone who has heard of his work. My only feeling there was that you could mention some of his poems in the main text, obviously it is taken as read that they have titles but I think it would work better with the style if you did, as well as providing something for those who have heard of him in the main body of the text.
As I said above I really like the idea and I think the execution is almost there, for instance I enjoyed when you said " It was widely agreed that Thomas was a made who at this stage knew how to hold in his artistry without belching." That, I thought, was really intelligent use of the concept, but as I said above if you could ground such ideas in context a bit further and you would be done with that. As far as the tone goes you have a superb grasp of the encyclopaedic tone and the article sounds almost exactly like it should. The only time you waver is in the "Middle Years:Is It My Round?" section where the tone sounds slightly less convincing a couple of times, try to avoid being too colloquial even when referring to the poet's profession in your article. If you are able to take a second look at these things and make changes where you feel necessary then you will be done on this one.
Prose and formatting:
Pretty good on this one too, the spelling and grammar is of a pretty high standard and all that I can recommend here is that you proofread carefully after making any future edits. As far as formatting goes you have done pretty well there too but I would suggest trying to make either the second image or its caption a bit smaller in order to properly fit the image into the section, if you could do this it would look far tidier in terms of formatting as the image wouldn't be overflowing out of the section. I would also suggest moving the final image up a bit as it feels slightly like it has been tagged on at the end because it is down there on its own.
Not at all bad here either, I have no suggestions regarding the images themselves as they work pretty well. My suggestion is that you swap the second and third images around, that way the pictures seem to progress logically; I was slightly take aback to see an image of his grave in the middle years section. You would have to rework the captions if you chose to do this, so whether you do or not is up to you, I would suggest it purely as it seems to be more of a natural progression. If you don't move them then I would simply suggest that you make sure the captions fit with any humour revisions you make as they are just as important.
My overall grade of the article.
A thoroughly enjoyable piece of work, a bit rough around the edges in places but still enjoyable enough. If you can tidy up what needs tidying then, in my opinion at least, this will be a very solid article indeed. A lot of the changes here are cosmetic changes and I should emphasise that if you don't feel they would benefit the article don't make them, it is your article and this review is just my opinion of what you have done. If you do have any questions or comments then feel free to leave them on my talk page. Good luck making any changes.