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Dark Room. Attic. Corner Bookshelf.

by zc927

dark room.

in this room in which I should fall asleep, I can’t help but stare at the ceiling

and watch as dust particles dance across my vision. they dance

like I do, not much of a dance, but more like a shaky gait from one point to another,

with awkwardly bent arms that jellyfish from

side to side.


I climb out the window onto the roof. it's hot. my hands and feet burn

from the black sandpaper-y roof. but I like the burning,

it finally feels like something, so I stay there.

I like the satisfaction of the sweat beads that cascade

down my back, rugged and bony like a


corner bookshelf.

it sides wedged between my desk and closet door, on it my flower pot

crudely crafted in the ripe age of fourth grade. it has a large split down its belly

broken, but not broken enough to fix

kind of like me.

too broken to use properly, but not broken enough to receive concern

or to fix.

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299 Reviews

Points: 26590
Reviews: 299

Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:30 pm
starlitmind wrote a review...

Hey there!
This is quite an interesting poem. I love the things you chose to talk about, the dark room, attic, and corner bookshelf. I really enjoyed reading this poem! I have a few things I'd like to point out. These, of course, are just suggestions, so you don't have to listen to them if you don't want to! :)

I recommend dividing this into stanzas. I think each new thing you describe should be its own stanza. It would make this an easier read and less intimidating. It's not wrong if you don't, but personally I would. If you don't want to, feel free to ignore this!

"and watch as dust particles dance across my vision. they dance

like I do, not much of a dance, but more like a shaky gait from one point to another,"
You use "dance" three times in two lines. I recommend changing it up to avoid unnecessary repetition.

"it sides wedged between my desk and closet door, on it my flower pot"
I believe you meant "its sides" since you're talking about possession.

"from the black sandpaper-y roof. but I like the burning,"
I searched the word "sandpaper-y" up, and the only spelling I saw was "sandpapery" so I recommend changing it to that.

Overall, this is a lovely poem! Your title is intriguing, and I hope this review helped :)

User avatar
79 Reviews

Points: 108
Reviews: 79

Mon Jun 15, 2020 5:49 pm
Em16 wrote a review...

Wow! This was amazing. I really love the narrative voice. It adds a mystical, otherworldly tone to the poem. I also love how you focus the poem on three specific spots. You have some really great imagery and descriptions of these spots. For example, the way you compare the dust particles to jellyfish. I don’t know if you intended it that way, but because of the comparison, I associated the dark room with the ocean. It made me think of the depths of the ocean where jellyfish roam, and what mysteries they contain.
However, I was confused by the second section, “attic”. Why does the speaker like the sensation of the “burning”? With more explanation, I think it could be a very impactful point, and reveal a lot about the speaker’s character, but as it is, it just feels weird.
In the third section “corner bookshelf”, I love the way you compare the speaker to a broken flower pot. It’s masterfully done and very impactful. You put such a unique spin on the idea of being “broken”, and I think it’s a very relatable sentiment. However, it feels like it comes out of nowhere. The first two sections don’t mention any kind of “brokenness”. I would suggest putting hints of it in the other sections, so the final comparison of the flower pot is building on the other sections.
Overall, great piece! It’s well-written, and has some great imagery.

zc927 says...

Thank you so much for your suggestions!

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90 Reviews

Points: 3650
Reviews: 90

Mon Jun 15, 2020 2:55 pm
Plume wrote a review...

Wow! This is a marvelous piece. I really love the sort of poetic-ness of the format. And I really, reallly, reallllly felt that last metaphor. I love how each paragraph (stanza?) focuses on one material object or place (dark room, attic, and corner bookshelf) and then delves deep into what it means and what significance it holds. It's simplicity at its finest.

A couple suggestions, mainly about word choice and diction: the phrase "in this room in which I should fall asleep" is slightly wordy, especially with the repeated "in." I'd suggest condensing it to "In the room where I'm supposed to fall alseep, I can't help..." Also in the first section, you use dance three times in a row. You might want to change one of them, just to put in some variety.

Overall: marvelous job! I found this thoroughly striking and entirely moving. My favorite part was definitely the last bit.

zc927 says...

Thank you for your review! I never thought about how wordy that first stanza was, thanks!

Inspiration usually comes during work, rather than before it.
— Madeleine L'Engle, Author