Young Writers Society

Home » Literary works » Poetry » General

E - Everyone

how many bruises can you hold inside you (draft 2)

by BluesClues

every time you swallow back tears
how much damage does the dripping cause
how much does it erode your throat, your ribs
and when you smile instead of crying,
how many teeth crack with the effort
of holding your jaw that way
how long before it shatters you inside out
how many fractures split your bones, your heart
how much does it take to caulk over the fissures
how many bruises can you hold inside you
before it's too many


The original version of this poem can beĀ read here. I'm hoping this is basically the final version at this point, but any feedback is appreciated! That said, I am not planning to add capitalization or change the punctuation.

Note: You are not logged in, but you can still leave a comment or review. Before it shows up, a moderator will need to approve your comment (this is only a safeguard against spambots). Leave your email if you would like to be notified when your message is approved.

Is this a review?



User avatar
27 Reviews

Points: 884
Reviews: 27

Wed Jul 21, 2021 9:22 pm
View Likes
legendarycomputerpoetry wrote a review...

Hi BluesClues,

Thank you for posting the second draft of this poem. I find it refreshing when authors do not simply abandon their projects once they've been thrown into the void that is the World Wide Web. But I digress, here is a review from me for this poem. Hopefully, it helps you, even if a little.

First: the physical style of the poem. I notice that with many more personal poems, the first word in each sentence is always lowercase, rather than uppercase. In most instances, such as this poem, this is a stylistic choice that is employed well. I would also argue that the limited punctuation is an indicator that a poem is more personal to the author. In this poem, I find that the lack of periods in particular only further conveys the main theme of the poem: how much can one take until they must stop? How many periods must we desert before a phrase becomes unreadable? I appreciate the self-awareness in this poem. Accomplishing that is completed through much practice.

Second: the vocabulary. This poem has a distinct set of vocabulary. One that mostly derives from physiological language; as seen with the words "throat," "heart," and the mentions of varying types of bones. I believe this was a good choice for two reasons. One: the physicality of the language allows the reader to relate to the content, and two: it's been shown that throughout the history of poems, using parts of the body makes for meaningful comparisons. In other words, the language you employ is easily digestible to readers in a way that is not elementary.

And, third: the structure. Though you engage in popular structure style in poem-writing (for example, repetition), I find that it works in poems that are more personal to the author. This trickle-down effect that you have written here - starting from the eyes, down the throat, to the bones, and finally, your heart - works excellently in terms of repetition. We, as the audience, are repeatedly reminded of where we are in this poem; we are onlookers and the main character at the same time.

I would also like to mention that your poem leaves a sense of worry and questioning in me. When have I swallowed back tears? How many times did I smile instead of crying? If your goal was to do the aforementioned, consider it accomplished! This sense of ambiguity is why I like reading and writing poems. It is a great form of expression.


BluesClues says...

Thank you for your thoughtful comments!

Random avatar

Points: 155
Reviews: 5

Wed Jul 21, 2021 3:13 am
View Likes
bnnina wrote a review...

Wow. I love the emotion conveyed through your words.
"when you smile instead of crying"
is a very relatable line in my opinion. I think that many tend to hide their pain this way because we are afraid that once we show it, it will become more real in some way. but how much can we hold inside?
i think the length actually gives it more power, as each and every word counts
Good work!

BluesClues says...


User avatar
278 Reviews

Points: 1685
Reviews: 278

Wed Jul 21, 2021 2:49 am
View Likes
silented1 says...

It'd be nice if you added a thought to this to make it more impacting.

User avatar
160 Reviews

Points: 7050
Reviews: 160

Wed Jul 21, 2021 1:22 am
View Likes
chikara says...

Hi BluesClues, my first thought is that you should add punctuation and capitalization. Anyway, that's it for my review, have a good day!!!!

sksksk seriously though, love this <3

BluesClues says...

CHI I'm-- XD

Thank youuuuuu <333

silented1 says...

There's a comma.

BluesClues says...

@silented1 YOU ARE CORRECT see @chikara I don't need to add punctuation, there already is some

User avatar
19 Reviews

Points: 242
Reviews: 19

Wed Jul 21, 2021 1:19 am
View Likes
RealSadhours296 wrote a review...

Lovely poem that I can relate to greatly. Depression is a whirlpool of frantic emotions and endless self-hatred. Luckily for me, I managed to get the help I need and now have medication to take that alleviates my symptoms a lot, but medication helps. Medication does not cure. That whirlpool will always be there and I will always be hovering over it.

Your poem displays the pain of holding in all those dark, seemingly ugly feelings deep inside perfectly. It slowly destroys you. Strips you of everything you like about yourself until you feel there's nothing, nothing, nothing. The way it flows is just...*chef's kiss* perfect. The word choice is amazing and varied. I have never heard the word caulk before but I can guess its meaning from context alone.

Keep up the good work!

BluesClues says...

Thank you so much for reading!

One who sits between two chairs may easily fall down.
— Proverb from Romania and Russia