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by Apricity

I. To my parents

I look at my parents in twilight, their profiles silhouetted against the pastel sky. Overhead, the spring breeze ruffles the new leaves at the top of our persimmon tree. They glance up, and call out to my sisters that the wind has started and it was time to zip up their jackets.

I want to say, ‘zip up yours too. Don’t be cold.’ But the words are lodged in my cords. I go back home and make two cups of tea. One black, one white with no sugar and lay it on the steps. I sit with them, and we muse about a future as perceptible as the boundaries blurring in the horizon.

At night, when the shouting has died down to quiet murmurs and snores. I hold my mother’s hands in mine, I feel her shoulders and her calves and arms. When was it, that my fingers met more bone than solid flesh. When did the circles creep under her eyes and age had inscribed its mark in the slight bend of her spine. I am reminded of our trips to the market, and how she always walk a few steps behind me. And I, am always ahead waiting. As she had done, for so many years.

When you went to the hospital, and the nurse drew blood again and again. And I saw the skin on your hand pucker up as droplets of blood slid down your wrist, I saw your hidden flinches and the flash of pain in your iris. And I wanted to say, ‘I’m here’.’ To hold your hand.

I wanted to say, ‘I love you.’

But I can only turn my head to hide, the tears that run down my face, burning and blurring my vision.

II. To [name redacted]

You made no impression on me when we first met. That was how ordinary it was, but who would have predicted that 365 many days later. It was anything but that.

But, I will always associate you, with 3 o’clock sunshine and half-opened Snakes packets.

With Wednesday morning lateness.

The smell of coffee [not freshly grounded] but sourced from god knows where.

‘It’s over you tell me.’ With a wave of the hand, as if two years of memories could be dismissed with the simple motion of the wrist.

I want to tell you, ‘it’s impossible.’

But I can only linger behind when the schoolyard is quiet, lay on the grass (the part that is covered by the tall trees of an indescribable species) and think of the ways I could tell you but cannot. The sky is always blue on these days, a cloudless, postcard blue that aches to be written on. And my words are carried by the wind, blown to a one-way street named ‘Heart’.

When October approached and the sunshine fades from lemon-gold to maple. When morning lateness is replaced with weary sighs and squeaks on the whiteboard. You looked just as ragged as the worn edges of my exam folder, and I tell you to rest. But both knowing that rest is not an option.

Then it passes, in blurs too quick to be etched into a memory. Only a vague replica of what took place.

I did tell you ‘thank you’ in the end, and maybe that was enough, for you to understand all that you had encompassed, come to mean to me. To show you street lights that lit up the path to ‘Heart’ street.

And maybe it was not, just as no paint can capture the luminance of a star, no words can capture the intimacy of sentiments.

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381 Reviews

Points: 16998
Reviews: 381

Sat Jan 07, 2017 11:38 am
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Dreamy wrote a review...

Why do you do this to me?

Maybe you should just sit down for a week and get this story done with because the delay is too much to handle.

Roman One was sensual and nice. The enjambment of the scenes that played out or more the transition from the family sitting on the porch to the walks to the market is almost casually handled. It did affect me in the sense that it was more like watching a movie because the editing is done by skipping out the memory slides or cutting the film since I’m taking movies for example.

It didn’t have that word built up transition, you know, something like gradually leading up to the scene and to be honest, I kind of like it. I like how this progresses, I feel like the narrator is telling me, ‘look, this is what is important. Wind and trees remind me of my family and jackets and tea and the stairs. Holding my mother’s hand reminds me of how she always stays behind. Where in which, the ‘behind’ hinting at the illness. I like your subtlety. (Maybe you need to revive something. ;) )

And your subtleness always surprises me because you have this habit of not dramatising things that people would normally expect you to but then you put your heart out on things that could settle with subtleness. I think that’s what makes you you and your work from others.

Roman Two was too personal. I try to not to be too biased when it comes to reviews. I don’t want to appreciate it solely because of what’s happening in my life but then again I don’t want to scrutinise it simply for the sake of the review. I think it is what it is. And I felt vulnerable reading Roman Two; I think that’s a good thing to you, the writer.

I’m sorry if this isn’t helpful. I don’t know why I review anymore. Do opinions qualify as reviews? I don’t know.


Apricity says...

Ughhhh, net deleted first reply. Second reply.

I wish I could finish this, but I couldn't. I don't know, because writing a memoir is hard especially when I've only lived 18 years. I debate over what I want to write for each instalment, it's a personal thing sure. But I want my readers to enjoy what I'm writing as well, how much do I tell, what do I tell? >> Half the time I don't know what I'm doing.

Unintended subtlety :3, (I'd revive but grown out of it :c)

What did you mean Round 2 was too personal? Was it too personal for you because it hits on something you're going through irl? Or too personal as in, too personal a story to share. When I first wrote that, I thought probably too personal and too raw. If this instalment wasn't a vaguely insomnia induced wouldn't have come out at all. >>

But honestly, I really do value and look forward to your comments/opinion/review/whatever you want to call it each time I post. I really want to thank you for reading and commenting because it's what drives me to write more. It always helps, Dreamy. <3 Thank you for being a constant reader.

Dreamy says...

I don't know, because writing a memoir is hard especially when I've only lived 18 years.
hahaha, poor you. Take your time don't take my impatiance as pressure. :)

Roman Two was personal in every sense. I mean it doesn't necessarily have to happen to me for me to feel the intensity of the narrator's pain. What's more funny is that, sometimes I forget that this is really a memoir and that you /really/ are showcasing what happened to you and that you are letting us see what you went through without a silky veil. But still the gossiping geek inside of me wants to grasp every piece of information and iron it and call it personal so it wouldn't be subjected to too much critiscim, if you know what I mean. (I recently established that I'm weak in explaning matters to people) But I hope you see what I mean. Love is as foregin as Christmas carols to me, so no not personal to me. :P In a way, I'm just trying to save my favourite writer. ;)

It makes me happy that you look forward to my reviews, mostly opinions%u2014 for which I'm greatful. Until the next installment. Take care!

Apricity says...

D: why do I always miss you on chat, I feel like this would be a much conversation via chat. *feels pressurised* No I'm kidding, xD it's just fuel for motivation.

So...this is what I got from it. The fact that Roman Two is too personal may subject it to unwanted criticism? >> I'm not sure I understand what you're saying, what do you mean by ' But still the gossiping geek inside of me wants to grasp every piece of information and iron it and call it personal so it wouldn't be subjected to too much critiscim,' this?

<3 thank you for saving me, (oh you, you make me blush)

No, no ,no, not until the next instalment, you need to explain things.

Apricity says...

Ah one more thing! You say you forget that sometimes this is a memoir? Why is that?

Dreamy says...

Explanation for the "gossiping geek": The very fact that you didn't give us enough detail about the relationship-- I find it hard to be empathetic towards the narrator. I've been only given one side of the story, I want to know more. I want to know why they wanted to break it off-- though it could ruin the style you are going for. But you can't have your style hinder your story. Everything in this memoir is poetic and has got a unique style but what's going on? These are the things that I really want to critic about but since you are my favourite I chose to disregard these doubts just so you can have the freedom to experiment without having me doubting your every move-- thus saving you from becoming too conscious which could take away the purity of this memoir. Who knows, maybe this could work, this could be epic and so I wanted to wait till the next instalment to see if you /are/ providing the story for these confessions.

It goes same for forgetting that this is a memoir. Memoir, the way I see it, is pages and pages of personal stories. Right now, this feels like I'm reading the trailer before the main picture if you know what I mean. This is blunt, I'm sorry! :c

Apricity says...

No! Please be blunt, I can take it. I need all these opinions when I redraft things (because heck I really do want to get this published one day). Ahhh, I see. >> Yeah, I wasn't sure about how much information I should put in. I think this is the problem with me, I write these mostly to settle my own feelings and forgetting that I need to address my readers as well. I think I can work with this even in my own style (although this instalment is more poetic than the others).

Oh gosh, no. Usually each of my instalment ends and that's it, but I might do a second part of confessions. :3 Just to satisfy your curiosity.

Ahhhh, I see, no I understand what you mean. Thank you for clarifying! <3

Apricity says...

Ah crap, I'm going to that annoying thing where I reply twice. I do appreciate you saving the critics though, it does grant me the freedom. <3 (put the critics in spoilers? So I know when I redraft xD, that is the time to click)

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5 Reviews

Points: 428
Reviews: 5

Fri Jan 06, 2017 10:48 pm
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Judge94 wrote a review...

I thought this was an excellent piece!
I don't know exactly how to review, but I liked this a lot and hope I say something helpful.
I love the section about zipping up their jackets and how you don't want them to be cold either, I thought that was a cool role switch--like you were parenting your own parents.
However, "we muse about a future as perceptible as the boundaries blurring in the horizon." didn't make a whole lot of sense. Do you mean that the horizon is blurring, so the future is blurry too? Or are the boundaries referring to something else? You might want to clarify.
Also, this part was amazing to read, but needs some rephrasing in terms of tense.
"When had my fingers started meeting more bone than solid flesh? When had the circles crept under her eyes, or age inscribed its mark in the slight bend of her spine?"
It was a really good way, though, to show that she is getting older.
The ending of that part was incredible and very nicely done!

The second one was also impressive, and I like the list of things you associate with "name redacted". I did feel like the switch from coffee sourced from god knows where to "it's over" was a bit sudden. You might want to add in something about your actual relationship and/or the nature of its end so that "it's over" doesn't seem so out-of-nowhere (unless that's the feeling you really want).
You might want to change your line from "it's impossible" to "that's impossible" to make it clearer.
The paragraph after that is fantastic and poetic, and absolutely my favorite part.
The penultimate paragraph is also one of my favorites. I love the imagery of streetlights leading to your heart (hopefully I interpreted that ok).
All in all I think you did a great job. I know I didn't make that many corrections, but I hope I still helped. A few grammar mistakes but a read-over could fix those; another reviewer pointed some out. I really think you have a beautiful style!

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Points: 506
Reviews: 4

Fri Jan 06, 2017 6:39 pm
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Younnez19 wrote a review...

You have many comma splices and fragment sentences.

Your first two sentences are both independent clauses. Don't connect the two with a comma. That creates the comma splice.

"I look at my parents in twilight, their profiles silhouetted against the pastel sky."
To fix this: add a conjunction word (and), or simply remove comma, and add semi-colon or period.

"I want to say, ‘zip up yours too. Don’t be cold’ But the words are lodged in my cords."
Here it is better to use the double inverted commas when indicating speech, or dialogue. And of course don't forget your punctuation after the dialogue contained within the brackets. in your case a period before 'but.

The rest of are recurring problems that you can quickly spot yourself. You don't seem to have a problem with comma placements and so forth, so i believe they just went by unnoticed.

"At night, when the shouting have died down"
Here the verb 'have' is incorrectly placed. Use has, since has belongs to singular. he has, she has. the shouting has. 'Have' for plural. They have. The cars 'have,' and so forth.

Otherwise, all in all. nice piece. Nice combination of words. Keep it up, and hope to have helped.

Apricity says...

Hey Younnez, thanks for taking your time to review this piece. Grammar is definitely my weak point, so I'm really thankful that you took the time to pick out what was wrong. I've changed the tense problem, however the comma splice is there because it's intentional.

I know I placed this under novel and chapter, but the form is like paragraph poetry if anything else. I wanted to maintain that rhythm but, if I add a conjunction it breaks the flow. However, I want to say that what you have pointed out is absolutely correct and valid. I have yet to find a way to balance out creating flow as well as not violating rules of grammar.

Younnez19 says...

Your positive feedback to reviews will only help you grow. If there is anything out of place, but intentionally then it can be excused. I don't know how far it can go, but keep up with this, and certainly with better reviews from more professional writers, you will obtain what you seek to achieve.

Apricity says...

Don't sell yourself short of your reviews, all opinions or reviews are helpful to me. You see things that the so called professional writers may not see as well. : )

We know what a person thinks not when he tells us what he thinks, but by his actions.
— Isaac Bashevis Singer