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parts per billion

by luminescence


it's harvest season and early august acidity

lingers on my tongue; the grapes are slightly unripe,

bruised, but they'll make an unforgettable wine.

(if your standards are as low as the ground, that is.)

                                                  

the older the wine is, the better the taste is;

i'm tipsy off old-fashionedness and traces of arsenic.

the lower the consumer price, the higher the chances

of foul play behind the company doors.

                                  

i feel fine (besides the fact that alcohol is

enslaving), but the old man on the news doesn't.

it's not my problem to fix, it's the company's issue

yet i continue to feed them my paychecks.

                                              

"it has as many effects inside the body as cigarette

smoking does," says an official connected to the story,

and "it's highly toxic; it's astonishing."

i don't feel fine anymore. 


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Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:01 pm
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ShadowVyper wrote a review...



Hey luminescence,

Shady here with a quick review for you on this fine Review Day, courtesy of the Imposters ;) Let's get started...

it's harvest season and early august acidity

lingers on my tongue; the grapes are slightly unripe,


This line break felt a little odd to me? I know sometimes phrases are broken up between lines in a poem to have more of a dramatic impact, but I'm not sure that I necessarily how that ends up working out in this one? I think I'd like the part before the semi colon to all be on the first line so it reads smoother.

i'm tipsy off old-fashionedness and traces of arsenic.


I really like the imagery you use here with "tipsy off old-fashionedness" -- I feel like it was a really nice... not really play of words, but kind of? Like, talking about old wine, but then spinning it around to old-fashionedness. It created a bit of intrigue in my mind and made me really interested to read on and find out what this poem is all about.

i don't feel fine anymore.


I think you do a really nice job throughout this poem balancing the "news story" with the inner thoughts of the narrator. It's fairly relatable to know the allure of alcohol and understand the cheapness and low quality, but then as you move through the poem it gets progressively more foreboding and "uh oh what's in the wine?" and builds until this line is the PERFECT way to end this poem.

I really liked this poem, overall! You used some really great imagery in this poem and made it both emotional and intriguing. I really enjoyed reading this!

Hope this helps!

~Shady

And, the obligatory Schadenfreude and Fahrvergnügen in the spirit of review day ;)




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Sun Jan 31, 2021 7:02 pm
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veeren wrote a review...



hello there lumi i am here to give you my small two cents on your poem here

now i have to start by saying i was quite surprised reading this because i didn't expect it to be as good as it was. that is not to discredit you as a writer, but rather to explain that i myself have really low standards when going into a work so as to not find myself disappointed when i reach the end. as far as your writing goes, it flowed very well. of course there are bits and pieces that could be tweaked, but i liked more than anything that i could follow along with this strand of an idea that you have given me to think about.

is alcoholism the main theme here?

addiction is never mentioned explicitly, but it is hinted at heavily throughout the stanzas. what you do differently is not only mention the victim of alcoholism, however, but the CREATOR of it as well. the companies that are okay doing things they shouldn't if it means keeping their money; the bad wine, the bits of poison, the paycheck turned hush money. you've presented the piece very well.

what you end the piece with is the realization that something may be wrong. perhaps all these unforgivable offenses should no longer be forgiven? that shift in mentality gives the poem life and helps us understand the reasoning behind everything. while we may already dislike what is going on, now our narrator does too, which gives us the closure we as readers need.

overall, i enjoyed the poem and i want to thank you for sharing it. i hope to see more from you soon!




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Mon Jan 25, 2021 10:34 am
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silented1 wrote a review...



This is really well written.

it's harvest season and early august acidity Your enjambment works well here because you're creating separate ideas with it. It could be bad because the ideas might not flow. It did here because you started out with it's harvest season.

lingers on my tongue; the grapes are slightly unripe, good pairing again.

bruised, but they'll make an unforgettable wine.

(if your standards are as low as the ground, that is.)



the older the wine is, the better the taste is;

i'm tipsy off old-fashionedness and traces of arsenic. I'd drop the ness from this line. It cuts into the flow.

the lower the consumer price, the higher the chances

of foul play behind the company doors. good foreshadowing but not totally in line with the poem because the poem ends on feeling fine, not the company.



i feel fine (besides the fact that alcohol is

enslaving), but the old man on the news doesn't. The idea of alcohol being enslaving is an awesome line, but maybe you tried to put it in the poem? Because it doesn't match.

it's not my problem to fix, it's the company's issue

yet i continue to feed them my paychecks. This is in line with the last line of the second stanza, but it's a dead end. Your poem still works without it because you mentioned the news already.



"it has as many effects inside the body as cigarette

smoking does," says an official connected to the story,

and "it's highly toxic; it's astonishing."

i don't feel fine anymore. [b] Good ending.


I noticed your poem changed from being about the taste to company to news to health. Something to think about! You don't have to focus in on it by the way. Don't think that you do.




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Sun Jan 24, 2021 7:29 am
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GrinningMan wrote a review...



What an interesting little story. If I had to interpret this, the person making the wine intentionally made it bad to give the company a bad name. There's no remorse to this person, what I can assume is just the motivation to harm the company overcomes the morals to harm a person. As such, they made a truly "unforgettable wine." The cost was so low that people with poor taste would easily pick it up, and perhaps you do get what you pay for.

What I like is the last couple lines, specifically the use of "astonishing" when regarding that this botched wine is highly toxic. It's extremely surprising or [impressive]; amazing. And suddenly, this person does not feel fine with it anymore. I'm not fancy with interpretations, but the best one I have is that this person didn't make a botched wine to be impressive, considering what it was meant to do. The fact that it can be seen as such makes them uneasy; maybe it was too impressive?

Overall, this was a short and enjoyable story, and I'm impressed that you've given me the chance to speculate on such a simple structure. Sometimes the best stories told are ones that people can piece together from very little given.





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