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Honey and Sunshine

by Aranya


Does this thought ever cross your mind
That you’re not totally straight
But contain in yourself
A pint of honey and sunshine

I was probably 10, when I first wanted to hold hands of a guy friend of mine
12, I wanted to stay in boys’ locker room a little longer
13, I felt an urge to know who I am
So, I caught hold of a dictionary
Flipped its pages
And found a word called GAY
Gay, a noun
Spelt G, A, Y
Meaning , an incurable illness that the society spits upon
Synonyms, Faggot, Hijra, Filth
Eg. Children should not play with John, he is gay.
And in tiny letters at the end of the dictionary it was written
“Rights of this dictionary owned by a corporation called THE SOCIETY.”

An illness
I first thought to express this to my dad and mom
But, an illness
What if they take me to a doctor
An illness
What if the doctor bleeds me to death
An illness
I was 13, and it freaked the hell out of me.

So I lied
Lied to myself
Hid myself in the closet

And made friends with darkness

But in a bleak corner of the closet, I kept writing poems
Love poems with misplaced pronouns
Replacing boy with girl
Him by her

Time went by, and
With each passing time
Pain and agony started oozing out
And one day I decided to come out
Not because somebody gave me a pep talk
Neither unicorns came knocking on my door, but
Simply because I started feeling too claustrophobic in my congested closet
The cozy space between the hanger that hung my favourite baby pink sweater and the hanger
That hung my darkest poems got flooded with my own tears.

So, I came out
I came out, dressed in rainbows
Bitch, it was time to see the sunlight everybody’s been raving about!

But when I saw the sunlight
I saw myself
I saw that my sexuality isn’t the most important thing about me
I saw that I was gay
Which simply meant that I was happy
And I was proud of every inch of who I was
I was never born to be silent
I was born to be gay.

And
One fine day
I met him

I was in a bookstore
Dressed beautifully

You know ! the perks of living in a closet for years!

I was in a bookstore
Dressed beautifully
Carrying the selected books to counter
When we collided

And the books slipped

My heart slipped too

I sat down to lift them

And he held my hand

Holding hands, looking into his eyes
I felt warmth, warmth of a thousand suns
Each pouring honey and sunlight over us
Like celestial vessels
Seemed like an eternity passed away
Yet we remained lost into each other’s eyes

It was the first time, I kissed a boy

We went to the back of the bookstore
His hands clutched to the back of my hair
Our bodies so close together
That I could listen to our racing heartbeats

Boy’s lips were sizzling like melting sugar

We met, we kissed, we loved and stayed together.

Until

Until, one day he left

And he left a note too, that read

Dear
Loving you is no more legal
Thank you

Your partner in crime

And I cried

Cried till my lungs got torn
Cried till my soul got ripped

Love is blind, right?
And hence knows no gender

Then, why?

Why does our breath chokes your existence? Why?
Why is our love unnatural and our desires carnal? Why?
Why are we an infectious illness?

I ask you, why?

Do you know what!
Don’t answer
Because I don’t care

I am gay, and it doesn’t mean I am a slut and your opinion doesn’t matter
I am gay and I know my mother and God forged me from the first sunrise, I manifest moons when I speak
I am gay and I know everyday is a tightrope strangling around the neck, I know my dad doesn’t hug me as tight as he hugs my brother
I am gay and I had the best boyfriend ever

People ask me these questions

Is your pee-pee too tiny?
Do you have like half-baked organs?
Do you feel sad that you’re God’s mistake?

Yes! Yes!!
I do feel sad that God made us imperfect
Cursed us with bodily defects
Because he gave us ears to listen to what you say
And a heart to cry upon

Is it too much to ask, the Right to Love?

You call us gay, but ask yourself, are we really?

You see before every rainbow there’s a heavy rainy day
And that’s the tragedy of my life, being a sad gay!


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Reviews: 713

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Wed Jan 16, 2019 8:27 pm
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LordWolf wrote a review...



Hey there Aranya. Sorry it took me so long to get around to your request but I haven't been in the right state of mind to review for awhile. And this poem does strike close to home, as any work that focuses around a queer community issue does. You have a lot of material here and I understand that some of the format is due to it being slam and spoken word, but I have a fair amount of commentary for that issue as well.

Does this thought ever cross your mind
That you’re not totally straight
But contain in yourself
A pint of honey and sunshine

I've seen the imagery of "honey and sunshine" used in reference to being gay before, and it's never been something that matched up with my own experiences. So including that at the very end of this stanza, adds an off vibe to the entire work, changing my vision of any content to come.
And that's in reference to how the first stanza works in any poem. You need to draw the readers in and I simply do not see that happening with what you chose to present to me. The first line is rather plain. It doesn't do much for me but maybe it would do better in the action of speaking the poem out, when you can add certain things to how it sounds.

I was probably 10, when I first wanted to hold hands of a guy friend of mine
12, I wanted to stay in boys’ locker room a little longer

I know that this also comes back to the performance involved for these lines, but they're just rather plain. I've heard this story before and I've certainly seen these examples before. The simple urges from pre-teens and young teens about anything concerning "gay", seems to pop up in a sweet concept in every queer poem. I'm not saying that it's a bad thing to include but it's certainly not anything original.
I was expecting for this content to be more impactful and more focused on getting the job done with strong personal experiences.
This is lacking in that key piece

13, I felt an urge to know who I am
So, I caught hold of a dictionary
Flipped its pages
And found a word called GAY
Gay, a noun

Using the dictionary example is also a staple of this sort of poetry, it doesn't add anything but it's not taking anything away either. One thing that I'm a bit put off by is the lack of punctuation and how it just popped up here for a moment. I think that maybe it would add more to the performance of this poem if you added in a few commas and periods, designing how it's spoken.

Spelt G, A, Y
Meaning , an incurable illness that the society spits upon
Synonyms, Faggot, Hijra, Filth
Eg. Children should not play with John, he is gay.

The continuation of the dictionary scene doesn't do anything for me and I think at this point, it's beginning to take something away from your poem. I know that I am put off by the use of "hijra" as a synonym for gay because if I am remembering correctly, that is referring to an entirely different queer community. And I know that you are choosing the word "filth" because you're trying to come up with similar insults towards people identifying as gay...
But again it gives off the wrong vibe to me, turning against the rest of the content.


And in tiny letters at the end of the dictionary it was written
“Rights of this dictionary owned by a corporation called THE SOCIETY.”

I think that a lot of the material in this poem hinges on how other people view you and how you view yourself. That certainly comes alive in this portion where it's turning the narrator against the entirety of society, creating a massive fear for the future. But calling society a corporation and the inclusion of all caps to address the matter, is not holding a particular pressure towards the work. I just see it as being overly dramatic and trying to get attention, which does seem to be the purpose of the entire poem.

An illness
I first thought to express this to my dad and mom


But, an illness
What if they take me to a doctor
An illness
What if the doctor bleeds me to death
An illness
I was 13, and it freaked the hell out of me.


Both of these quotes, which i decided to separate for the sake of clarity, are dealing with the common idea of being gay = an illness. These are probably reflections on your person experience and certainly hold some of the feeling that you put forth, but I am still off about the impact. The reader is only getting so much out of this on the other side and I hope that your poem picks up later on. It's one to thing to write a poem in a simple way that people can relate to and generally feel the pity that the narrator is striving for. But it's another to truly bear your soul in a way that creates a real inspirtational feeling within the reader's heart.

If you are so dependent upon the phrases and examples that you think are acceptable to share, or easy to explain, this poem is never going to bring the feeling all together.

So I lied
Lied to myself
Hid myself in the closet
And made friends with darkness


But in a bleak corner of the closet, I kept writing poems
Love poems with misplaced pronouns
Replacing boy with girl
Him by her

Also splitting these two sections up so that we can talk about the issues within them easier. I know what you were going for and I'm enjoying the greater feeling that comes through to the reader. The narrator is viewing the two sides of being in the closet over their sexuality. On one hand, they do have to deal with hiding in the darkness that many people associate. But then in the second part, they are dealing with the possibilities of the future and keeping themselves occupied for the time being. This does seem like a standard way of looking at it but these two parts had more effort put into them than I had seen before, giving me hope for the rest of the poem.

Not because somebody gave me a pep talk
Neither unicorns came knocking on my door, but
Simply because I started feeling too claustrophobic in my congested closet
The cozy space between the hanger that hung my favourite baby pink sweater and the hanger
That hung my darkest poems got flooded with my own tears.

Skipping over the section before this one with no reason to quote it. The lead in portion is good and it represents the gradual process that some people need to find their way to freedom. And while I haven't really liked any of the lines so far in this poem, I was able to resonate with this section. It's no longer using the culturally accetable versions of experiences that someone might have.
And it also brings in the points about how each coming out experience happens for a different reason.

So, I came out
I came out, dressed in rainbows
Bitch, it was time to see the sunlight everybody’s been raving about!

I'm not quoting this part as much for the content, as something I meant to explain before. This poem needs a language rating (which I say as a mod telling you to please bump your rating) and it would also be nice if you included a trigger warning. It's not something that I can force on you to include but you use certain situations and words that are harmful to some. For example in this part, b*tch is a 16+ swear word and it's also considered a slur by some parts of the queer community. Overall, it needs something put on it.

But when I saw the sunlight
I saw myself
I saw that my sexuality isn’t the most important thing about me
I saw that I was gay


Which simply meant that I was happy
And I was proud of every inch of who I was
I was never born to be silent
I was born to be gay.

These two parts bring about an interesting look at the word "gay" and I think you meant this section to be almost comedic. That's the main thing that occurs to me as I work my way through it and how "gay" is addressed.
It is nice to have the moment of realization for the narrator, where they detach themselves some from their identity. I like seeing this shift of focus and it does change a bit of my opinion about your work.
The final line does feel a bit off but I think that's because you're playing back into the common cliche.

And
One fine day
I met him
I was in a bookstore
Dressed beautifully


You know ! the perks of living in a closet for years!

I'm not quite sure what is going on in this section, besides playing a joke into another stereotype. I'm guessing that you trying to joke around a bit by saying that people who were in the closet for so long have that fashion sense, in the way they might have been in a literal closet? It's a hard joke to reach and if it was not intended to be a joke, I think you've lost some of the meaning on me.

I was in a bookstore
Dressed beautifully
Carrying the selected books to counter


When we collided
And the books slipped
My heart slipped too
I sat down to lift them
And he held my hand


This is set as a very careful and bound to be sweet scene, which stirs some trouble for me. I manage to keep coming back to the experiences that you are presenting and I just don't find myself relating. It sounds more like something that might be taken from a hallmark movie than anything else, making it out to be very sweet. But then it's not bringing much else to the table.

Maybe that's just me though.

It was the first time, I kissed a boy

First thing, add a period.
Second thing, this line picks up on an issue that I've spotted a couple of times within your poem. You go from a state of very dramatic imagery to a line containing dramatic information, that is just put off in a very casual way. I can see where this might have had the potential to work but to me, you're just undermining the point you're trying to make.

Skipping through the sexual imagery because I have no intent of unpacking all of that.

Until
Until, one day he left
And he left a note too, that read
Dear
Loving you is no more legal
Thank you
Your partner in crime

You have a fair amount of typos within this work and based on the other content in this section, I'm pretty sure you meant "Loving you is no more illegal." The relationship seems to be based on the risks that the two partners are taking in being together, which is a point that comes back for a lot of people. I'm glad to see more effort being put into this section.

I am gay, and it doesn’t mean I am a slut and your opinion doesn’t matter


I am gay and I know my mother and God forged me from the first sunrise, I manifest moons when I speak


I am gay and I know everyday is a tightrope strangling around the neck, I know my dad doesn’t hug me as tight as he hugs my brother


I am gay and I had the best boyfriend ever


These sections that are comprised of "I am gay" statements are nearing towards the edge of annoyance. I know that you needed some level of repetition to make this big point about how it impacts the way the narrator deals with the world, but it does bring that biting feeling back. Repetition is always one of the trickiest forms to use and it seems that you did manage to cut this off before it working down on the reader's brain.

I am slightly put off by the last statement including the ex-boyfriend, when it seems the others were working towards the positive side that might be occuring for the narrator.

Just very mixed signals.

People ask me these questions
Is your pee-pee too tiny?
Do you have like half-baked organs?


Do you feel sad that you’re God’s mistake?
Yes! Yes!!


Question sections never do much for me and I find the same issues here that I have been finding within the entire poem. This is the point when you need to bring everything together but it seems to be straying away again. And one of the lines seems to imply a particular insult meant towards a particular kink, as far as I am aware.
The typos come back again as I am fairly sure you meant a word other than "organs".
And then we come to the oldie but a goodie of being called a mistake, which never seems to turn out very well in any presentation.

Let's just skip down and see how you present it.

I do feel sad that God made us imperfect
Cursed us with bodily defects
Because he gave us ears to listen to what you say
And a heart to cry upon

This was a surprisingly positive viewpoint for what I was expecting to happen with the answering of the mistake question. I did enjoy this part of the poem because it was so different from the rest of the material that you chose to present. And this portion is doing more to work towards closing the holes up and pushing the reader towards the end.

Is it too much to ask, the Right to Love?
You call us gay, but ask yourself, are we really?


You see before every rainbow there’s a heavy rainy day
And that’s the tragedy of my life, being a sad gay!

I don't have too much to say for these last two sections, which bring back the tone I found to be joking before. Certainly "sad gay" was meant to have this effect on the reader.

Overall, I don't think much of your poem because I've read so many poems that were focused around coming out and struggles with identity. It was nothing special but it wasn't entirely bad, hitting on some of the major points that everyone needs to pass.
For improvement, it needs to be shaken up a bit more and a more personal touch added.

Good luck.
Sorry I'm late.
- lizz




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73 Reviews


Points: 7551
Reviews: 73

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Fri Dec 21, 2018 5:19 pm
Daughter wrote a review...



Hello, there! Elisabet here (as requested) to review!

Let's go ahead and jump right in!

Does this thought ever cross your mind
That you’re not totally straight
But contain in yourself
A pint of honey and sunshine

Being bisexual, I do remember having a bit of this type of feeling when I was younger. I wasn't like the other girls that I was friends with at that time, girls who always talked about boys and which guy they liked. I just wasn't into it. I started learning more about different sexualities and found that I really identified with being bi.
I currently have a girlfriend and we've been together for two months. Throughout reading this piece I found that I recognized a few of the struggles you covered.
Your story made my heart pang, and I'm glad that you've embraced your sexuality. It's really important that you came out, and I'm very greatful for your telling of your journey.
I love that you threw in of the struggle of realization. The element of poetry and the little entries made me smile. You have a good way with words when expressing yourself.
I did find a few parts a bit iffy, especially towards the end. You lost the flow quite a bit, which was unfortunate, but I'll give you that this piece was very long and it can be difficult to maintain a theme/flow for the whole thing.
You seemed to also have a certain intensity that you maintained, which kind of intimidated me as the reader. If that was what you were going for, well done! It was effective. If not, however, you should probably consider going back and asking yourself these questions while editing:

1. What do I want to portray with my words, and how can I do so? Consider how to make your words flow better, and how you can attempt to blend paragraphs instead of scattering them and making the piece chalky.
2. What do I want to bring to the table, and what sort of message do I want to give to my readers? I found your piece lacked a meaning and it seemed like a bit of just a story, but with not much to take away from it.
3. Could I edit the length of this piece? It seemed you added a lot of unnecessary detail that contributed nothing or very little to your work. Perhaps consider editing and trimming down things that don't add to your main focus (being gay, and what you have gone through).

Overall, good work! I would definitely look back and see what you can edit, but you've done a good job!
Good luck on your competition and in life!

Best regards,
Elisabet




Aranya says...


Could you pls highligt some of those details that I should be trimming ? Will be of great help.
Thank you so much Elisabet. It was lovely to read your review.



Daughter says...


Sure! Underneath the spoiler will be your piece and I'll put in bold what should be edited/removed (in my opinion).
Spoiler! :

Does this thought ever cross your mind
That you%u2019re not totally straight
But contain in yourself
A pint of honey and sunshine
I was probably 10, when I first wanted to hold hands of a guy friend of mine
12, I wanted to stay in boys%u2019 locker room a little longer
13, I felt an urge to know who I am
So, I caught hold of a dictionary
Flipped its pages
And found a word called GAY
Gay, a noun
Spelt G, A, Y
Meaning , an incurable illness that the society spits upon
Synonyms, Faggot, Hijra, Filth
Eg. Children should not play with John, he is gay.
And in tiny letters at the end of the dictionary it was written
%u201CRights of this dictionary owned by a corporation called THE SOCIETY.%u201D
An illness
I first thought to express this to my dad and mom
But, an illness
What if they take me to a doctor
An illness
What if the doctor bleeds me to death
An illness

I was 13, and it freaked the hell out of me.
So I lied
Lied to myself
Hid myself in the closet
And made friends with darkness
But in a bleak corner of the closet, I kept writing poems
Love poems with misplaced pronouns
Replacing boy with girl
Him by her
Time went by, and
With each passing time
Pain and agony started oozing out

And one day I decided to come out
Not because somebody gave me a pep talk
Neither unicorns came knocking on my door, but
Simply because I started feeling too claustrophobic in my congested closet
The cozy space between the hanger that hung my favourite baby pink sweater and the hanger
That hung my darkest poems got flooded with my own tears.
So, I came out
I came out, dressed in rainbows
Bitch, it was time to see the sunlight everybody%u2019s been raving about!
But when I saw the sunlight
I saw myself
I saw that my sexuality isn%u2019t the most important thing about me
I saw that I was gay
Which simply meant that I was happy
And I was proud of every inch of who I was
I was never born to be silent
I was born to be gay.
And
One fine day
I met him
I was in a bookstore
Dressed beautifully
You know ! the perks of living in a closet for years!
I was in a bookstore
Dressed beautifully

Carrying the selected books to counter
When we collided
And the books slipped
My heart slipped too
I sat down to lift them
And he held my hand
Holding hands, looking into his eyes
I felt warmth, warmth of a thousand suns
Each pouring honey and sunlight over us
Like celestial vessels
Seemed like an eternity passed away
Yet we remained lost into each other%u2019s eyes
It was the first time, I kissed a boy
We went to the back of the bookstore
His hands clutched to the back of my hair
Our bodies so close together
That I could listen to our racing heartbeats
Boy%u2019s lips were sizzling like melting sugar
We met, we kissed, we loved and stayed together.
Until
Until, one day he left
And he left a note too, that read
Dear
Loving you is no more legal
Thank you
Your partner in crime
And I cried
Cried till my lungs got torn
Cried till my soul got ripped

Love is blind, right?
And hence knows no gender
Then, why?
Why does our breath chokes your existence? Why?
Why is our love unnatural and our desires carnal? Why?
Why are we an infectious illness?
I ask you, why?
Do you know what!
Don%u2019t answer
Because I don%u2019t care

I am gay, and it doesn%u2019t mean I am a slut and your opinion doesn%u2019t matter
I am gay and I know my mother and God forged me from the first sunrise, I manifest moons when I speak
I am gay and I know everyday is a tightrope strangling around the neck, I know my dad doesn%u2019t hug me as tight as he hugs my brother
I am gay and I had the best boyfriend ever
People ask me these questions
Is your pee-pee too tiny?
Do you have like half-baked organs?
Do you feel sad that you%u2019re God%u2019s mistake?
Yes! Yes!!
I do feel sad that God made us imperfect
Cursed us with bodily defects
Because he gave us ears to listen to what you say
And a heart to cry upon

Is it too much to ask, the Right to Love?
You call us gay, but ask yourself, are we really?
You see before every rainbow there%u2019s a heavy rainy day
And that%u2019s the tragedy of my life, being a sad gay!


And that's about it. Thank you!



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Reviews: 34

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Sat Dec 15, 2018 9:37 pm
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LanaOverland wrote a review...



Hey-o. This is Lana. You requested a review from me and I am delivering. First off this is a particularly difficult one for me to edit because it is EXACTLY the kind of thing I would write. Long long poems with that cursing poetic colloquial and GAY. So bare with me on this cause I always have difficulty self-editing.

Synopsis: So this poem is about a gay boy who at first doesn't know what being gay is. He thinks it's an illness he needs to hide, but then says FUCK IT, I'm comin' out. He learns to accept himself and what pride means. He meets a boy, and he loves him, but the boy is afraid and the pressure breaks them up. He begins to question himself again, but finds that he doesn't care. He doesn't.

Gotta say off the bat that I relate a lot. I'm a genderqueer asexual lesbian myself (I feel like those labels may be in conflict with each other. hmmmm...). I've been in one very unhealthy relationship, and though no one has ever told me off for my identity, I felt that societal burden before, and in some respects I like that your poem reflects that it comes back time after time, but narratively I have some problems with it, but I'll get into that I guess...

Hmm... where to start here. Slam doesn't really go well for a line by line... Okay. Let's jump right in and see where this takes me.

Stanza the first: In theory I like this stanza, but the relation between "straightness level" and "containing a pint of honey and sunshine." For me at least the measurement comparison didn't relate. I sat for a good while trying to understand it and I know that it's not a line meant to be understood, but I just don't get it. It sounds great. Don't get me wrong, but the images are so different that I find them distracting. Like if I didn't know this was heterosexual straight I'd be here like: "straight... honey.... Straight is food???" I'm not literally that dumb, but like some part of my subconscious went on that tangent.

Second: There's a couple of lines here. "13, I felt an urge to know who I am" I thought the grammar was off. Normally when we think about discovering sexuality it's a what rather than a who. And since this is a time period where your narrator thought they were ill, then what would be entirely appropriate for getting across the sense of discomfort with the self. Also it's was. I know your narrator is still gay, but was is the correct grammar for this. Then there's the use of a certain f word, which you do need to be conscious of. I know why you're using it and it makes sense, just be aware. Then "And in tiny letters at the end of the dictionary it was written/“Rights of this dictionary owned by a corporation called THE SOCIETY.”" I just honestly didn't get this line. The call out to society felt cheap and a little childish. And since you're not inspecting the ways in which society creates queerness, it felt tangential

Third: I liked the repetition of "an illness" I felt like that summed up anxiety and the all consuming nature of that figuring out your sexuality has on your thoughts. "I was 13, and it freaked the hell out of me." this line felt like it didn't belong. The other lines were more feeling driven and in the moment whereas this one felt retrospective and "freaked the hell out of me" felt like it broke the voice you had (very pitchy in the word "freaked" and that was tonally different from the other words) which was calmer and more professional. Tempered.

Seventh: "Pain and agony started oozing out" Wasn't sold on this image. I felt like you could develop those emotions better and really get the feeling across to the audience.

Eighth: "Neither unicorns came knocking on my door" What is this line supposed to mean? I just don't know. "Simply because I started feeling too claustrophobic in my congested closet" I wasn't sold on this explanation really. I didn't even really feel like it needed an explanation if the explanation was "just cause." "The cozy space between the hanger that hung my favourite baby pink sweater and the hanger/ That hung my darkest poems got flooded with my own tears" WHAT IS THIS ANGST! Much Emo, Very Angst.

Tenth: "I saw that my sexuality isn’t the most important thing about me" So this line. I like the sentiment, but I feel like narratively it's too early in the poem, and I also feel like the audience doesn't get to see that there's more to your narrator than their sexuality.

Nineteenth (ish): "Holding hands, looking into his eyes...Like celestial vessels...lost into each other’s eyes" I know I'm ace, and I don't get what it's like, but is this what it's like? Like what is the emotion you're trying to get across? Lust, romance, beauty, euphoria, the final heat death of the universe? I have no sense of it in this description. You're falling back on abstraction and good sounding words which can do alot, but they aren't quite specific enough for me. This just makes me feel suffocation and sticky. Which...might be the emotion???

Twenty-Seventh: GRAMMAR??? "Loving you is no more legal"

Thirty-One: "Love is blind, right?/And hence knows no gender" I get what you're going for, but there's a lot more senses to gender. Sound, for instance, touch if you're real close. I doubt taste, but scent is important. Might just be me, but for me the metaphor didn't work.

Thirty-Sixth: "is a tightrope strangling around the neck" Again the metaphor fell a little flat for me. Tightrope is underfoot. Noose is around the neck. I get the connection, but now I'm thinking: You really don't know how to tightrope do you? It's a distracting metaphor really. Also that line about hugging his dad was so great! I loved it.

Thirty-Seventh/Thirty-Eighth: I feel like here's a good point to address the overall narrative of the poem, in which you say that you have it all figured out and you don't care, but you do care and it still hurts...But it's fine cause I cause you can just ask pointed questions about how it doesn't matter? I didn't quite know where your narrator stood at the end. What effect the boyfriend had on him and what emotion he was at beside anger? It seemed like he was saying that he was proud, but it felt more angry, still the kid in the closet. Not a changed man. He was actually more happy in the middle than the end. And that is a nuanced response, but if you don't address that it sometimes gets worse after it gets better than the audience will be confused about why it seemed he was the most proud in the middle of the poem. I felt the poem was saying that it knew how it felt, but was emotionally confused at the end, and that could be a organizational problem or a end of the poem problem. I don't know what to suggest because I don't know how you want it to read at the end, but I would figure out what emotions you want to conclude with and cut away any ideas that would distract from that emotion. Like the questions at the end lead you to say things that sound defensive and angry and you could just not address them in this poem.

Anyway. I felt it was a fairly strong piece, with some space to edit down and some to expand on. Emotions are really what you're going to want to focus on (both portraying how you felt and expressing them in your voice.




Aranya says...


Thanks a lot Lana, I'd definitely work on it again. :)



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Sat Dec 15, 2018 2:07 am
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EternalRain wrote a review...



Hello! Here as requested. Though fair warning, I really haven't done many poetry reviews and I don't read enough poetry to know the ins and outs - but I can give you feedback on what I thought! So just take it with a grain of salt.

Okay!

So this is definitely a more literal poem with a more literal meaning; the hardships of being gay. I really like how we, as readers, experience the whole thing - finding out, coming out, first kiss. The end we get a reflection piece from the author, which I really like because it ties together the whole question on whether being gay really is bad (it isn't!). Also, with a much more literal poem/the direct voice of the narrator, the small, descriptive metaphors sprinkled into the poem really pulled it together.

I thought the flow was a biiit choppy in some parts. Maybe that's what you had hoped for - but some of the sentences felt weirdly cut. I'll explain a bit more with this example:

Like celestial vessels
Seemed like an eternity passed away
Yet we remained lost into each other’s eyes


the second line of this just reads really awkwardly - I think it would work a lot better with even the simply addition of "It" before seemed, or connecting the first line and the second (a bit unclear where the first lie is supposed to connect). Anyway, this kind of thing was throughout the poem - some parts were perfectly fine but some were more like this example here.

In addition to flow, I recognized this was written in past tense. There were a couple of times when the tense switched a bit into present which kinda funked it up a little. For example:

13, I felt an urge to know who I am

"am" should probably be "was".


You see before every rainbow there’s a heavy rainy day
And that’s the tragedy of my life, being a sad gay!


I like this last line. It made me think at first because it seemed like it was going in a positive direction but then "sad gay" ends the poem, which brought in the negative tones. However, then I thought about it a bit more and I suppose it implies that this "sad gay"'s life will get better (reach the rainbow!). At least, that's my little interpretation of it. Nonetheless, I liked it.

I find that the poems I do read are not as often written like this; it is clear we are reading the exact thoughts of someone and they have a really strong voice throughout the poem.

Good job! Hope this helps you out!

~ EternalRain




Aranya says...


Thanks a lot Rain, it's a very nice review. I'll work on it.



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Sat Dec 15, 2018 2:06 am
Louisiana15 wrote a review...



Hello! Louisiana here for a review!

So, first off, a bold topic to discuss. One that is seemingly controversial. I am neutral in reviews, so if I say anything offensive, please know it is not intentional and let me know!!

Alrighty, here we go: If this is meant for a contest, I would guess there is a rubric of word/character limit. So, if so, make sure that you follow that seeing as this poem is considerably long. I like its length. It is appropriate for the type of poem. It almost seems like a whole life. Cleverly done as it engages the reader even more.


Rhyme Scheme: I did not see a specific AABB/ABAB, etc. scheme which would take away from the poem, but every now and then (such as the final stanza) I found an AA and that made a wonderful conclusion.

Diction: You used sensitive diction and it was properly placed, but I feel like being a controversial, complicated topic, this poem should have more formal words. Cursing definitely reveals the narrator's emotions, but the way it is used--towards the world--seems very personal. The narrator discusses their story, but they also attack the world in a way that the reader feels attacked as well. The anger, fear, frustration, etc. is felt perfectly without "bitch". I think you could go either way with it--keeping it or taking it out--but I just wanted to give a common reaction to the public. In the same category, your use of metaphors and imagery was beautiful. You painted a picture of love, of happiness, of freedom. It made me want to engage in the poem and hear the story.

Repetition: the repetition definitely proves the narrator's point and added to the beauty and power of the poem. Some of it, though made the poem seem too repetitive. Not necessarily same phrases but extremely similar phrases or similar points already made makes the reader think "Yes, we heard you say that already". But, it doesn't seem too much that it would distract the reader.

Overall, I thought this poem was nicely done and very bold. Not something I typically read, but it was engaging. I think this is contest-ready.




Aranya says...


Thanks a lot Louisiana, it's a very nice review.



Louisiana15 says...


My pleasure! Best of luck with the competition!!!




No person can be a great leader unless he takes genuine joy in the successes of those under him.
— W. A. Nance