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january.

by amelie


did you kick up rocks and dirt beneath the swingset,

creating an indentation in the loose earth below you

raking at your feet? the world isn't as deep as your

little feet can reach, no; i bet you scooped up gravel

with your heels, bended their backs to act like shovels.

-

do you remember when the rocks underneath our feet

meant that we were going someplace? the tornadoes

we stirred up in the dirt between our toes

were the only calamities we would catch a glimpse of.

-

did the swing hit your back when you jumped off?

someday, i will give you a call and ask you

when you're coming home. maybe there isn't any signal

at your new apartment.


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671 Reviews


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Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:58 am
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Lumi wrote a review...



This is going to be short and analytical.

So you have a small piece jam-packed with potency and sentiment in every line, and it stands as your best showing yet. I want to know whom you've been reading or listening to to get this muse because it's absolutely silently gorgeous. Between the implied great future just from rocks beneath a swing to the inferred safety from disaster from creating your own, everything in this piece works together for your good--except the one titular jerk who came out of left field.

January is given no context, fam, and it kills me that it feels that it should be such a paramount concept. As the poem stands, a better stand-in would be Yesterday, as tired as it is. Still, all the same, the ending is tight and gives me aches; I love it.

And while the final stanza is a bit thrown off by January, its saving graces are the final lines and the implication of trauma in 'did the swing hit your back when you jumped off?' I love all the inference material, but I feel I say that too much with you.

Figure out what to do with January because right now it is the weakest of weak links among the strongest poem you've written thus far.

All the best,
Ty




amelie says...


thank you- I swapped january with something that meant the same to me, hopefully it's not too drastic.



Lumi says...


I like it quite a bit this way. How do you feel about it? And maybe ask your other reviewers/friends because lol my word is not law.



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Thu Apr 20, 2017 11:26 pm
Nikayla wrote a review...



Hi there, Amie! You already know why I'm here--to review your poetry, of course! Nonetheless, let's jump right into the piece.

We can see that this is a shorter piece, being only three stanzas long. Due to this, I'm going to be going stanza-by-stanza for this piece! Let's jump right into the introductory stanza.

did you kick up rocks and dirt beneath the swingset,

creating an indentation in the loose earth below you

raking at your feet? the world isn't as deep as your

little feet can reach, no; i bet you scooped up gravel

with your heels, bended their backs to act like shovels.


Hehe, I see how this is similar to Desolate in ways, I guess I'm just influential like that! I like the first three lines, though I'm not sure how I feel about them being a question. Being a question doesn't really fit, since you aren't asking much in specific. I suggest reworking the first couple lines into more of a question since I noticed that the first line being a question was a reoccurring repetition in this piece. Instead of a question, the first three lines are more of a statement, I feel, and if you want to maintain your repetition in this piece, then you're going to have to change those lines in some way, shape, or form.

The wording in the lines after this question is a little bit awkward, although, maybe it's just me who doesn't understand what you mean in the line, 'the world isn't as deep as your little feet can reach'. Does this mean that the little feet of the other person in the poem can reach deeper than the world? I suggest perhaps changing 'world' to 'earth' though the usage of 'world' is interesting since I actually put it into the context of society being a little shallow, but that's just an interpretation I had and found.

do you remember when the rocks underneath our feet

meant that we were going someplace? the tornadoes

we stirred up in the dirt between our toes

were the only calamities we would catch a glimpse of.


This stanza has a much stronger starter and hook, because it's more of a question here. I love the imagery in this stanza with the tornadoes though the wording feels a tiny bit off here. You could play around with moving around the lines for a stronger flow, though ultimately it's up to you if you want to keep it the same or not.

An example of what I think might be stronger is: "we stirred up/ tornadoes in the dirt, between our toes/were the only calamities we caught a glimpse of." That's just my preference, though, and you don't have to follow it, but I do want you to learn that a simple rearrangement of words can fix your whole flow.

did the swing hit your back when you jumped off?

sometimes, January will give you a call and ask you

when you're coming home. maybe there isn't any signal

at your new apartment.


The first line here reminds me of John Wayne Gacy Jr. by Sufjan Stevens, which I know that you know and I thought that you may have taken inspiration from in that line. The question goes back to being a bit weaker here. I feel there should be more connection between lines one and two, but I like the ending that you have in place, it just needs some refinement with the rest of the poem. This poem has a structure and backbone, now you just need to grow more around it to make it stronger. As always, if you have any questions, feel free to ask!

I hope I helped with this one, Amie. And as always, best wishes!




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Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:54 pm
klennon14 wrote a review...



Hi there! Here for a review :)
Overall, I liked the structure and word choice throughout your poem. There are a few critiques I would like to give you, but I did enjoy this piece quite a lot. Your writing style here is simple and just descriptive enough to the point where it's not overkill.

The first thing I noticed is that nothing is capitalized. Perhaps you were undecided on that matter when posting this. I would capitalize new sentences in this instance. I think it would add to the structure of this poem.

Also, there were a few spots where the line breaks were a bit off, perhaps take a look at a few again?

For example "the world isn't as deep as your / little feet can reach, no; i bet you scooped up gravel"
"as your" was a bit of a jagged way to cut off this line, at least to me. If stylistically you liked this, please disregard me. I think that personally I would cut it off a few words before at "the world isn't as deep / as your little feet can reach..."
Or maybe I'm just crazy- I don't know. I'm in a ranty mood, so apologies in advance. XD

There were just a few word choices that were a little off to me.
"creating an indentation" for example. "creating" felt a little out of place for me. But that's also just my personal style. Just a suggestion.

I especially liked the second to last stanza and the last line! Great job with those :)

Overall, like I said, a lot of your word choice was fantastic and the lines flowed rather nicely. I hope my critiques came across as constructive. Please feel free to ask me any questions or refute me haha.

Great job with this piece!

Happy writing,

Kali L.





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