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12+

"you"

by Seirre


tw: very abstract and brief reference to strangling

               

                     

a. Tell me something about you.

you is the fleeting state of the person I'm talking to. you wear it like a stethoscope around your neck, a wordless acknowledgement that we both have heartbeats. and for a moment you listen to mine, even though we try to obscure this transaction by a blood-rush of meaningless chatter. Please elaborate on your answer.

you is the make-pretend game of we're gossiping about them now, but I'd never gossip about you. you is the temporary, unreliable half of we. we exchange words and pulses the way children slip beads onto a necklace, loosely and disorganized and distracted by the way scissor blades whoosh against each other. then we run out of time, I cut the string, beads bleed onto the floor, and you leave to join a different we. and suddenly you're them and I'm back to singular me: and somehow this isn't betrayal, somehow every interaction that feels a bit like a promise is understood to be just a knotted length of necklace that is soon frayed and forgotten and thrown into the scraps bin.

and now you are gone. and now you is the voice in my head, the whisper that wraps itself around my throat so that I can feel my veins throb against a tight murmur. you tell me my pulse was too messy, too rushed, say my beads were too rough to hold. you say they will empty their pockets of all my beads, my pieces, my bits of thread, the moment they're out of eyeshot. every remnant of we, you say, will feel like papercuts under their fingernails and they will dig them out with disgust. even when they try to forget you, you say, they will be stuck with a lingering impression of everything you said wrong. you know I'm right, you say - you know I'm the safest you to make a we.

something about you: I don't know who I am.


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Tue Dec 07, 2021 6:32 am
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starlitmind says...



Why am I just now finding out about this poem omg.




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Tue Dec 07, 2021 6:29 am
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alliyah wrote a review...



@Seirre I had like a half-written comment here that I never finished up ~ but wanted to fix that!

SO WOW - this is a really intense and well written poem!
(a lot of your work is amazing, but if you're looking into publishing ?? this is definitely one I think you should consider polishing & submitting out there, it's a really good read - like every. single. line. is so intriguing)

I'm always a fan of poetry in list and definition form, but I love that you've twisted it a bit here to make it different and fit the poem. Like the irony of having a list with just an "a" and no "b" with the repeated message of needing more information and elaboration on who the "you" is. I think having a list with a singular item also felt like it was the perfect fit for the "i" who had lost their "we" if that makes sense.

Also for a poem that is so theoretical, complex, and even philosophical I really appreciate the vivid concrete metaphors of the beats and papercuts - great job weaving the imagery together too so that the first and half stanzas feel connected.

The poem was a little bit to get my head around, and I'm not entirely sure I got the message how you intended, but it's one of those poems where even if I didn't completely "get" it, I still really enjoyed the process of reading (and re-reading) it.

I had a few interpretations

1) the narrator is referring to a "you" who is another person but who used to be so close to them that their identities almost merged, there seems to have been some sort of disconnect between the two of them and now they don't know who they are without the other person. Interestingly neither the "you" or the "i" are developed much in the poem as far as their identities apart from each other so even in the poem they become merged.

2) the narrator is referring to a "you" who is actually themselves - and they refer to themselves in second person because they feel disconnected from their self-identity and are trying to figure out who they are. They feel like they lost a part of themselves when the "you" is gone - and now are trying to search to re-find their inner voice.

3) my other interpretation is that the poem maybe isn't about specific people but about hypothetical people that people create with their gossip or rumors or just their words in general- a lot of the conflict seems to be around gossip, words, and promises, ie. "I'd never gossip about you. you is the temporary, unreliable half of we. we exchange words" and "you say they will empty their pockets of all my beads, my pieces, my bits of thread, the moment they're out of eyeshot."


I think that some of the plot there is a bit confusing a s I mentioned above - I'm not sure I have any suggestions to smooth that out, but the poem is still enjoyable to read even if I wasn't entirely clear where it was going. One thing that's really interesting about the poem is also how you use contrasts of images that shouldn't go together (maybe to mimic the contrasts between the you & the "i") -- for instance "murmur" is a really gentle word, and next to "veins throb" which is more medical & gory is interesting - and then "scissor blades whoosh" was another that was really contrasting image - with "whoosh" being soft and whimsical vs scissor blades seeming really violent.

Overall it's a very layered and interesting poem, really enjoyable to read! :)
Hopefully some of that was helpful!

Never stop writing! <3


~alliyah




Seirre says...


Hi alliyah! I really meant to respond to this review much sooner, but here I am at last.
this is definitely one I think you should consider polishing & submitting out there, it's a really good read

Aww thank you :')) I actually had quite mixed feelings on this poem, so it's really nice to hear that!

but it's one of those poems where even if I didn't completely "get" it, I still really enjoyed the process of reading (and re-reading) it.

I had a few interpretations

Oh I love hearing these interpretations! My intended meaning was a bit of a blend between your first two - in the first stanza, the narrator feels like all of the relationships they make are temporary and the interactions even more so. In the second stanza, they think all the interactions they have with people are meaningless, shallow, and essentially feel-good lies. And then in the third stanza, the conversation switches to an internal one and they have the anxious voice in their head reinforcing that all those relationships are meaningless and that no one enjoys talking to them. So the voice says they're stuck with themself, the only person they can trust. But then the ending line is that they don't even know who "themself" is, which kind of implies if they don't know them, how can they trust them?

I think that some of the plot there is a bit confusing a s I mentioned above

I can definitely see how that would be the case! Even with my personal interpretation laid out, I feel like it goes a bit all over the place, even when all the nonliteral language is gone. I'm not sure how I'd fix that either @_@ So I think I'll just embrace it in this poem!

One thing that's really interesting about the poem is also how you use contrasts of images that shouldn't go together

Yeah! Honestly, a lot of the time that's just how i write and I don't plan it in - but I did try to add a bit more of these into this poem, because I thought it fit the theme well.

Overall it's a very layered and interesting poem, really enjoyable to read! :)
Hopefully some of that was helpful!

Thank you !!! It was super helpful; I'm always so excited to see I got a review from you c: I love how good you are at catching little details, and at interpreting a poem! <3



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Sat Sep 04, 2021 3:14 pm
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tweezers wrote a review...



CHMAWHAT HELLO THERE

So, first thing I thought of when I started reading was "oh, schoolwork poem." I think that's because of the "a. Tell me something about you" part because teachers label things with letters when you start to get into the older grades / high school. Perhaps this is pointing fingers at that, especially with the question being about the person, who does not know who they are and technically are not looking for themselves at the moment.

Like with

you is the fleeting state of the person I'm talking to.


There is a distance between the lost person and the question being asked, which might be why it's set up like a Q&A or a school paper. In both of those settings, you will always end up not being familiar with the person asking the questions. A teacher is either loved or feared, and either way, you never know the true version of them. Q&As are often done through the internet, and anyone can use the internet. Whether those two are for good or for bad, it's still going to end up being the same when it's all said and done.

Fleeting references a short period of time - both of those work in short periods of time. School may seem like it goes on forever, but when it's over, you find yourself mulling at everything and how quickly it went by. Q&As are often time-limited in the way where you have a few hours to send in questions, and those questions are answered in a short 10 minute video or through a website that will one day just get out of the sphere of the internet's favourite places to be an influencer on.

And then talking. Sure, the person might be talking to them, but are they really understanding them? Not at all. You can talk to someone about the weather, or about a random thing that happened in the past. You can't really get into a deep conversation by just talking to them, and instead, you need to try to empathize with them. Whoever asked that question probably won't try to get onto their level.

I especially feel these ways about
Please elaborate on your answer.


It feels cold. There isn't any fun and games. There isn't an eye-catching game to this. It feels like a high school paper you need to write, but you can never get into it because it just work and work is terrifying when it has nothing to it. Whoever you send the paper to probably doesn't even care about what you elaborate on, and despite how much effort and how much of your time you put into it, they'll still find something to comment on and tangent about how much you've messed up and how your grade suffer.

There are just so many feelings wrapped into this, most of them being aimed at insecurity and trust issues. The "you" in question changes often and jumps back and forth to many people the narrating figure does not like or just does not understand. The teacher, a group of people who portray themselves as real friends, the actual narrator looking back at their identity and their confusion about who they are.

Look at
you is the make-pretend game of we're gossiping about them now, but I'd never gossip about you


You can't really tell who this is about, and I honestly like that about it. It's easy to assign a meaning to this and then realize that "oh hey, this works as well," which is exactly what my brain did as I read this part. Maybe it's the fake friends who are gossiping, but maybe it's the narrator figure and their relentless insecurities. The basic body images, of strangling and hearts/veins point me towards that as well - it is one common, unfortunate thing for someone who is insecure about themselves to look what is on the outside as something that is bad, but it happens enough with what's on the inside.

I feel pointed towards that with "I cut the string, beads bleed onto the floor, and you leave to join a different we. and suddenly you're them and I'm back to singular me" for the same reason. Someone who is lonely, especially when they are at the age where they start to want to understand themselves, will often join the wrong crowds of people to make friends. It always ends badly, as shown in the betrayal referenced.

Lastly, there's
every remnant of we, you say, will feel like papercuts under their fingernails and they will dig them out with disgust.


Papercuts are often a childish thing to complain about, and it does go back to the school ideas I came up with. It makes me think that the narrator is trying too hard to appear grown-up and cool enough to hang out with the folks that will do them harm. That is why they listen to the person who left them. That is why they are having trouble finding the version of what they want to be. That is leading into their thoughts about their body and the way they act behind the mask they've made for these people.

Maybe I interpreted this completely wrong because sksksksk I do that way too often, but besides that, this was really inspiring and just beautiful.

Happy RevMo!
-- ihc




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FireEyes wrote a review...



Hey watcha! Incoming review!

It's always great to see you posting some works, and I'm here to review one!

Let's start with some critique.

I wouldn't exactly classify this as a critique, just something I noticed about your style here. The first letter of each sentence isn't capitalized but "I" is. I guess I'm just not used to this particular style of capitalization but sometimes when I see a capitalized "I", I get sidetracked a bit.

and now you are gone, and you is the voice in my head,
This is just a suggestion but I would have personally put a full stop. And then put "it" at the beginning of the next line.

But that's all I could really find to criticize. Now let me praise your work!

we exchange words and pulses the way children slip beads onto a necklace, loosely and disorganized and distracted by the way scissor blades whoosh against each other. then we run out of time, I cut the string, beads bleed onto the floor, and you leave to join a different we.
Man, this section is very powerful. I can remember when making bead bracelets or necklaces, I would spill the beads sometimes. And I would just feel so defeated and emotionless, but I had to pick them up anyway and maybe re-string them. And with the next lines I can feel the lack of trust. But you have to carry one. It's just so beautiful.

you is the make-pretend game of we're gossiping about them now, but I'd never gossip about you. you is the temporary, unreliable half of we.
It's hard to trust someone new and the words of "I'd never gossip about you," is always suspicious to someone you're trying to befriend. Gosh, I just feel the emotion you were trying to convey and it's brilliant.

But that's all I have for today. I hope you found some of this useful! I'll try to see some of your other works, because I don't think I've reviewed any of them! Anyway byeeeeeeee<333

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