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17.

by LadyBug


AUTHOR NOTE: I just want to point out that the format change and random flow abruptions are supposed to be there!


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Fri Sep 23, 2022 4:19 am
RandomTalks wrote a review...



Hey LadyBug!

RandomTalks here with a short review!

I very rarely review poetry, so bear with me please!

I enjoyed reading this very much though! Being an eighteen year old, I remember the feeling of being 17 all too well, and I like the fact that this poem tries to capture just that - the insecurities, the emotional turmoil and the frustrating confusion that is a part and parcel of the teenage experience. And I think because of that, a lot of people will be able to relate to your poem. It doesn't make generalisations, but instead expresses some raw emotions in their most truthful and ugly form.

I thought the transition from the 'summer line' to that of the 'ghost who lives in the blood beneath nails' was a little abrupt but I like how it reflects the subject of your poem. It represents the mind of a teenager, guided more by emotion than reason and the disconnected thoughts it usually produces. The way you switch from a smooth flow to a much heavier content with more gruesome imageries suggests how completely overwhelmed this person is. And ending it with "I don't think I am loved" shows how all of it comes back to that deep-rooted insecurity within all of us that makes us believe that we are unloved and all alone. The way and the context in which you wrote that line made it seem almost like a fear that was whispered out loud in a moment of desperation and helplessness.

I also very much liked the line - "i don't remember what i was thinking; i just remember that it hurt". Somehow, it reflects the very mood of the poem for me. The disconnected thoughts, the lack of capitalization and punctuation, the sudden switches in flow - it reflects the thought process of an overwhelmed teenager who seems to be lost. This line in particular suggests how the thoughts that trouble the mind become unimportant next to the emotional havoc they leave behind in us.

I also agree with Plume that the mention of the 'older boys' suddenly changed the tone of the poem for me. While I can totally relate and understand the role of 'older boys' in reducing one's self esteem, it comes too late in the poem for me to actually connect with that specific emotion. There isn't any space for the idea to develop and it made the end a little disconnected for me. However, if I think from the perspective of the teenage mind, it makes sense that the entire poem portrayed vague emotions and tendencies within the individual only to reveal the main conflict in the very end line. It makes it feel as though every thing or rather, every emotion the poet described before was a result of this conflict with 'older boys', and it steals some of the relativity of the poem for me.

Overall, though, this was an incredible and beautifully written poem! Thank you for sharing it with us!

Keep writing and have a great day!




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Wed Sep 07, 2022 2:13 am
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Plume wrote a review...



Hey there! Plume here, with a review!

I enjoyed reading your poem very much!! 17 is such an interesting age (coming from a 17-year-old) and I felt like a lot of what you were saying rings true with the teenage experience. It definitely feels like it's coming from a space of unsteadiness and inner turmoil. You used a lot of great depressive imagery that very nicely conveys that sort of hopelessness.

I loved the way you used grammar to show almost... deterioration? That might not be the right word, but there's almost this degradation as the poem progresses and it aligns with the speaker's words beautifully. It seems that at the speaker's lowest points, your lack of grammar and punctuation serves to show how low they're actually doing. "i dont think im loved" hits so much harder than "I don't think I'm loved—" I can almost see the eyes welled-up from painful realization. In a way, the beginning of the poem felt more like musings that were supposed to end there, but then spiraled out of control to reveal all these rawer, truer feelings. Your use of "i think" twice at the end and then having the following line be "i don't remember what i was thinking" was also really impactful and conveys that unsteadiness in a sense of self and identity. The contrast between "blood beneath my nails" and "skeletons in my closet" was also very well executed.

I did feel like the mention of "older boys" was a bit of a shift; most of the poem felt, to me, that it was about depression, specifically the more low self-esteem and hopelessness aspect of it. Because of the strong focus on the speaker themself, it almost felt out of place. The specificity of "older boys" I think was what did it; most of the poem had been focused on vaguer or inanimate images, and then to have the speaker seek validation in this specific group of people felt out of place, to me, especially ending with it. And maybe that was your intention! I'd just be curious to know what you wanted to convey through it.

Overall: really nice work. I think you made some really great choices throughout and beautifully portrayed those late-night thoughts of the insecurities that come with being 17. I hope to read more of your poetry soon! Until next time!




LadyBug says...


Thank you so much! For the older boys part, I wanted it to be the head of the breakdown, and I thought it kind of ties in with that lonely feeling that I tried to keep consistent throughout, the need for validation and the fear of growing up (being the same age as the "older boys") but I can see how it feels really random



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Tue Sep 06, 2022 1:34 pm
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FireEyes wrote a review...



Heya LadyBug! Another review Incoming!

Ah yes, 3am poetry. The most relatible of all the feels. Funny enough, I was also up early with personal dread. Anyway let's get on with the review!

I'll go through stanza by stanza and give you my thoughts.

I feel like I may be simultaneously empty yet overflowing
In a way only people who weep in the shower would understand.
So first off, I felt personally attacked. But this is such a specific, yet true feeling. You feel like you're overflowing with all this emotion, but the water that surrounds you makes you feel inferior to what in of power (if you have good water pressure) this inanimate object has.

I would also suggest putting a comma between empty and yet because in the rest of the poem you used pretty proper grammar.

Summer shouldn't feel this cold, but it lives in layered shared of black and blue
It's the color of my eyebags from sleepless nights wondering why I'm alone.
I love love love the imagery you used. I can feel what you're describing the cols summer to be. And as another person with chronic undereye bags, I can see it too. The whole stanza goes together so well with the addition of staying up all night with thoughts on why you're alone. Emptiness, loneliness, the cold, restlessness; they all go together and melt into one to where you can't differentiate any of them and that works very well!

I am the ghost who lives in the blood beneath my nails and with the skeletons in my closet
I smashed my mirror my young self gave me, then wondered why my reflection isn't loved.
i don't think im loved.
The goary imagery you chose to use contrasts with the previous stanza. It shocked me from the somber and softer stanza to this one being almost mindlessly picking until your skin bleeds. This stanza sure is jarring, but it doesn't hold the same impact as the other stanzas before it.

it's 3:00, and i think the moon is mad at me. i think this is called giving up
i don't remember when i was thinking; i just remember that it hurt
Not the moon! In all seriousness, I think for many people, the moon is a celestial body that you can see cares for the broken hearted, the sleepless, the mad, and the sleeping. It gives off that dim glow for the ones who need it, and for the moon to be mad at you, something must have been done. I couldn't imagine how I would feel if I thought the moon was mad at me.

As for the second line, "i just remember that it hurt" I think you could take out "that" and then leave it be to make more of an impact.

i'm 17. i'm too old for the older boys to trick me
but if they don't treat me like I'm special, then who will ever want me?
I understand your final sentiment all too well. I would also want the older dirt bag boys to treat me like I'm special. It's that twisted sense of attention from a bad source, and you captured it very well. Nothing else to say about this one because it really speaks for itself.

But anyway, that's all I have for today. I hope you found some of it useful! Please remember to rest yourself. Take care and have a good day! Anyway byeeeeeeeeeee<3




LadyBug says...


Thank you so much!! <3




When something is broken, it can be fixed.
— Benjamin Alire Saenz, Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe