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quiet hello, quiet goodbye

by alliyah

i loved you hesitantly –
in the nod at the radio static and the daily rain report,
in the pause at the cross-walk and polite hello-goodbye between
another hello, and wondering what you are thinking now, and i’m probably busy
this weekend but maybe another time, and trying the radio again –
and almost getting caught in a thunder storm, and in drawing maps out of your words,
in trying to catch the pattern in the wings of mayflies and the cracks on sidewalk edges,
remembering too many of your stray details that don’t belong with me
so i leave them on my countertop hoping i’ll have a chance to return them
before we collect any more dust,
in the days that make up seasons,
but only ever one at a time
little by little, because i knew
if i loved you how you were meant to be loved,
i’d never be able to let you go.

and i remember you hesitantly –
in the weight of the syllables of your name – heavy; but silt-like
always sneaking through my fingers – until you return again
like a wave to a shore and these conversations echoing in my ears
over and over – between strained goodbye, and radio-static again,
in the recollection of uncomfortable hush as we listened that summer
to the snap of cricket choirs and foot steps on pavement,
and wondering what i am thinking now
or if the rain could fill up these broken fault-lines – keep land from separating,
draw close miles stretched out too thin, bring us back
if only to give up mapmaking, if only to misinterpret every sign of rain,
if only to pass at cross-walks and polite hello-goodbye
between hello again.

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59 Reviews

Points: 688
Reviews: 59

Sun Apr 18, 2021 4:49 am
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NivedaJames22 wrote a review...

Hey alliyah!

First of all, wow! This is a beautiful poem. This should totally be in the literary spotlight!!

I really liked how you repeat hesitantly in the first lines of both the stanzas. It makes it very powerful in a gentle way, like the soft patter of rain on the roof, gentle yet unyielding.

There's something soft about the whole poem. That's probably a dumb way to describe a poem but that's what comes to my mind so...

It describes a gentle, soft kind of love, hesitant and mildly regretful, almost wistful. It makes you think about everyday things, so mundane but yet so precious. This feeling is also expressed in the title. You've done a great job with the poem.

I really loved this part:

always sneaking through my fingers – until you return again
like a wave to a shore and these conversations echoing in my ears

The "wave to a shore" was a lovely way to put it. <3

On the whole, it was a wonderful poem, like a gentle summer breeze, cooling you for a second, making you smile, and then leaving you wistful. Great going! :)

Can't wait to read more of your work.

Keep writing. <3

alliyah says...

Ah thank you! Loved hearing your perspective on the mood/feel of the poem. Thanks so much for taking the time to review.

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13 Reviews

Points: 406
Reviews: 13

Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:38 pm
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Ilium417 wrote a review...

Hi! Ilium here for a review!
Ok, now that that outburst is done, let's get to the review, shall we?
First off, the way you write is beautiful. You draw beautiful symbolism through radio and its static, and I find that to be absolutely amazing. It's also soo cool how you seem to think about (I'm a guy, so I immediately thought about a girl for this poem) her a lot, and all the things that your relationship can mean and all the- I just, I relate a lot to this poem on multiple levels, and that's really cool. It's hard for me to write poems that relate to someone else well, but the way you did it was phenomenal.
One line confused me, it was the "and wondering what I am thinking now." I just didn't quite understand that line.
I think this poem is amazing and you should continue writing stuff like this. Peace and Tacos be with you!

alliyah says...

Thank you! 2nd stanza is a mirror of the 1st so that line goes with "wondering what you are thinking" -> in the speaker's remembering their question focus has shifted and they are sorting out their perspective.

Thanks again!

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5 Reviews

Points: 18
Reviews: 5

Sat Apr 17, 2021 9:04 pm
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AddisonHardy wrote a review...

This poem is very beautiful. However, something about the way you write this confuses me a tad bit though, is it a crush? A lost friendship? A previous relationship that ended? Not saying it's bad, but it's quite intriguing. The symbol of the radio static is another thing I quite like about this. Good Job!

alliyah says...

Thanks for reviewing Addison - I was trying to get across the gentle ambiguity of the relationship, so it looks like that came across. Anything you think could be improved upon? I also see that this is your first review! Welcome to YWS, hope you're enjoying it so far. I find this resource to be a really good one for getting started reviewing around the site. :] Have a great day!

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.
— Leonardo da Vinci