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somewhere, folded in under the horizon

by Hijinks


Author's Note: Hi there! This is a mash-up poem set, meaning that these poems were creating by taking lines of other various poems I had already written and putting them together in new ways. You can find the original poems that inspired this set in my NaPo '22 thread. Because this poem set was created by mashing together lots of different poems, the poetry is going to be a bit abstract in nature; that's part of the fun! :)

i.

sometimes i cry myself to sleep when nothing went wrong with the day;

a crackly VHS reel of over-exposed and over-nostalgic memories that haven't happened yet,

(which is what i imagine it would mean to turn up the saturation)

until my ribcage is a pirate's barrel

and i'm coughing up shells

like dumbbells. I sleep.

ii.

it's funny to remember there's a horizon in both directions

(so inspiring and mundane that you just have to).

i am just a wheel

needing a destination, even when that singes,

trying to fly antennae-first into the moon.

i think i could metamorphosize into an angel or a demon

being measured up against some standard of isolation

round and round: it's not an altogether unpleasant feeling,

knowing the canopy of my funeral.

iii.

i think they think i find comfort in the way i can fit

But there's a balance to the universe, so they don't fit

iv.

In retrospect, if we had taken note of the changing behaviour of the ducks

They were holding their heads at too high an angle for an ordinary day


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Sat Sep 03, 2022 3:32 am
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alliyah wrote a review...



Hey Seirre! Just some thoughts here; hopefully some of them are helpful! :)


Interpretation
As I read the first two parts I thought "Aha" this poem is about someone living in a sort of cyclical nature - perhaps dealing with a polarizing life of highs and lows (or death/life) - and even though there's a sadness to having the realization of those lows there's a peacefulness to the narrator's voice in the first tow parts with the notes like "nostalgia," "sleep," and ""not an altogether unpleasant feeling" - maybe the peace comes from being aware of their emotions / experience or maybe they hope for the second horizon.

I don't usually think your poetry is very religious; or I would tend to think of the second horizon as a heavenly / or even reincarnation to go with the wheel/cycle imagery allusion - and to me being able to see your funeral canopy is actually a hopeful thought because it means some aspect of you is still alive / aware! I actually thought the whole part two felt very Buddhist - not knowing whether in the next life will leave them an "angel or demon" with a pleasant or unpleasant rebirth; leaning into life as a cycle; and finding peace in becoming aware of death. The line "over-nostalgic memories that haven't happened yet" also I think lends itself to that.

And then the third stanza is a bit more unsettled but still finding their part within the whole in a balance (<- another big Buddhist ideal expressed as 'the middle way').

But then I get to part four and all my ideas are kinda flip flopped / confused for interpretation - as it doesn't seem to have anything to do with peace / perseverance / cycles / or religion/philosophy outside of the fact that I do note that the narrator has changed from "i" to "we" so maybe have had some sort of epiphany and are one with the ducks <.< but I think that's probably a stretch!

So suffice to say - as I was reading it, I was really finding a lot of connections / ideas and then when I got to the final couplet was not sure what to think!

In light of the final two lines maybe the theme is contradiction or just absurdity in general?

~~~

Favorite Lines
I thought you had a lot of SUPER intriguing lines in this that really hopped out at me as philosophically rich.

Your second line is such a surprising twist after the first line because the 1st line sets up - okay is this going to be something very angsty/confessional? and then it turns into this interesting deep psychological twisting statement "a crackly VHS reel of over-exposed and over-nostalgic memories that haven't happened yet," - love the image and the whole line. Very interesting.

"it's not an altogether unpleasant feeling, / knowing the canopy of my funeral."
I just liked this image too - because it was surprising and unexpected but also made sense when thought about!

I also liked the blend of formal and informal language / phrasing throughout because it sort of gave the reader a mental break with all the heavier pieces of imagery to have sort of some lighter phrases throne in, and also gave the poem a unique and modern voice.

Suggestions
I liked a lot of what was happening in the poem, but for me had a hard time figuring out how to connect the last two lines with the rest of the poem - I do see you've sandwiched the poem by making both the first and last lines end in observations about "the day" - but maybe there could be a little more connection? I think that the first two stanzas although had a lot of variety and breadth still had some common themes / images with time and cycles / spinning (VCR Tapes always have sort of cyclical film and barrels, coughing, and sleep also feel like they fit in the "cycle" family of imagery. I think it'd create more points for connections if the final two parts of the poem also had some more cycle references - or if there was another thread that sort of linked them altogether (though maybe there is and I missed it; also totally possible!).

I also thought the line "metamorphosize into an angel or a demon" was a bit hard to wrap my mind around; and felt a little disconnected from some of the other conflicts expressed which seemed more like internal struggles with emotions & external conflict with time / living versus angels/demons which implies maybe an inner moral turmoil they are fighting which doesn't come up anywhere else in the poem.

Overall this was certainly an interesting poem to consider and think through! Side note: I also enjoyed the presentation of it - and thought the break up of sections with really diverse line lengths went well with the content and mood of the piece.

Let me know if you had any questions about my review!

~alliyah

ps. happy revmo!

Image




alliyah says...


Me: re-reading the author's note and Lim's review and wondering if this is not to be read as one singular poem but actually 4 distinct poems <.< hmmm! Curious to know more about your process / personal interpretation here!



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Wed Aug 31, 2022 4:48 pm
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Liminality wrote a review...



Hi there Seirre! Lim here with a short review :D

First Poem

My interpretation of the poem would be that it’s about someone feeling inexplicably sad. It seems to cover the physicality of sadness through the sea imagery, like the hollow pirate’s barrel and the heaviness of the shells. Meanwhile, the mental dimension of sadness is depicted through the camera imagery, which seem to represent thoughts or imagined scenarios.

I like that the first line establishes a personal connection immediately. It feels like the speaker is someone confessing their inner thoughts to another person, or perhaps to themselves. Even though it’s a mashup, I thought the imagery formed a cohesive pattern, first with the camera imagery (VHS reel/ over-exposed/ saturation) and then with the sea imagery (pirate’s barrel/ shells). Additionally, I like how the rhyming ‘shells’ is at the very end of the line. It kind of highlights that that image is going to become important later, when it is compared to “dumbbells”, which really conveys the message of heaviness.

Second Poem

This one seems to be a musing about life, purpose and death. The line “i am just a wheel/ needing a destination” stuck out to me. It seems that this is the main focus of the speaker, who is searching for meaning in a world of meaninglessness.

Like the first poem, I really appreciate that the imagery is connected to one another. I could imagine images of travelling down a road while reading this. The colloquialisms, for example, “it’s funny to remember” and “it’s not an altogether unpleasant feeling” create the speaker’s reminiscing tone. I also like that balance between portraying a stream-of-consciousness, such as with the bracketed interjection and the meandering flow of thoughts and images, with it being understandable and accessible. The repetitive structure “i am . . . i think . . . “ helps with that, I think.

Third Poem

This one is quite mysterious! The ‘story’ of the poem seems to hinge on the comparison between the first and the second lines. I get the impression that the “they” in the story are misguided, and the speaker is supposed to be telling the truth of the matter, so it comes across to me as a poem about subverted expectations, if that makes sense.

I like the simplicity of it. It feels like no words are wasted here, and just changing who it is who is doing or not doing the fitting is what brings the meaning of the poem home. I also like that it’s ‘breaking’ a rule of poetry not to rhyme a word with the same word in a very purposeful way. The repeated “fit” made me re-read the first line and reflect on how the two lines compare and contrast.

Fourth Poem

The speaker in this one seems to be making a realisation, but in a very observational, chill tone. It was not an ordinary day, but they are using very ordinary language to express that.

I like the focus on a concrete image, the “ducks” which helps me contextualise the poem, even if it’s a bit on the abstract side generally. I also like the scientific/ reporter-like voice, which contrasts the simplicity of “ducks” as a poetry subject.

Overall

I think these are really well-done mash-ups! Some phrases are distinct enough to tell they came from different sources, (for example “antennae-first into the moon” vs “so inspiring and mundane”) but are still able to tell a cohesive story or show a contrast in their own poems.
I like the variety in the voices of the four speakers, as they make the whole set more interesting. The voice in poem i is more intense and melancholy, while the voice in poem iv seems more distant and maybe a bit more light-hearted. It certainly takes you for a poetic adventure!

Hope some of this helps, and feel free to ask for more feedback!
-Lim




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Sun Aug 21, 2022 7:07 pm
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vampricone6783 wrote a review...



I will try and interpret the poems.The first one is about depression, the second one is about finding positivity (the horizon) in life (the destination). The third one is about pretending to be someone else in the eyes of others. The last is about paying attention to the little details in life that might help. These are all just my interpretations! It could (and probably does) mean different things. I just hope that you still have a lovely and amazing day and night.




Hijinks says...


Thanks for sharing your interpretations! Those are all quite similar to how I'd interpret the poems myself. I do find it interesting that you read the second poem as being about staying positive, as it certainly has some more morbid lines ("knowing the canopy of my funeral"). Perhaps you're viewing lines like that as not being afraid of the future!



vampricone6783 says...


Yup! Exactly how I viewed the second poem.




It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.
— Albus Dumbledore