Voice | Poetry Breakdown

Hello everyone,

I hope you’ve been well! I can’t believe that it’s already November. At my university, it’s very beautiful when it’s fall because most of the buildings are made of stone and with the bright leaves, it gives it a nice aesthetic. Sooner than later, snow will drape over the university, something I definitely look forward to in the winter months. For now, I’ll enjoy the crisp weather.

“Voice”

Your voice – so present
draws me close
and I am no longer enveloped in
constant worry
perpetual panic
everlasting nervousness.
I’ve become
okay.
I’ve become
better.
I’ve become
calmer.
Simply present
and never leaving
Simply appreciating
and never dreading
If you leave,
I will totter
I will sway
I will collapse.

What is happening? Can you tell me?
If I fall, every step up will become a mission.
With my left foot, my right will drag.
With my right foot, my left will drag. It’s a work in progress until I can stand again.
After being knocked over, I’ve become deaf.
After being knocked over, I’ve become numb.
After being knocked over, I say “fuck it all”.
But I still care.

My voice echoes down the grey corridors
and I just want someone to catch it.
What do I sound like?
Am I gently perusing like the fog
my fingers grazing through the invisible threads?
Am I causing you to lean in like Daisy Buchanan
with her breathy voice, drawing you near?
Am I like a thin curtain caught on a summer breeze,
Rising and falling, billowing to tickle the walls?

You give my voice definition
for I am able to stand up straight
without the fear of falling.
You restore my voice
when it becomes sharp and on the edge.
You caress my hand and say
“Keep at it.”
Your voice brings me comfort
and I am no longer afraid.

This poem was written and changed many times because I entered it into my school’s art and literary magazine along with another creative non-fiction piece. I wrote about something that was pretty close to me so that it would be as authentic as possible. I really hope they take my piece!

This poem is about questioning dependency on someone you’re dear to. We’ve all had gone through difficult times and there are always people who are there to help you. Yet, there are times when you feel bad that you’re possibly disrupting their time. Just know that in those instances, all they want to do is help you. There are three stages of this poem and follows the stanzas.

In the first stanza, it talks about how that person makes you feel. You feel so secure and comforted being around them. I use specifically voice because when someone’s comforting you, personally, the words mean more. Their voice is what pertains to them. No one else can have their voice  whether it be personality or the sound of their voice. And each person has their own way in comforting another person. There’s a general fear of that person not being able to be there for you because what if you go onto a difficult time again? What will you do? Well, you  just have to learn to fend for yourself.

In the second stanza, it talks about what does happen when that person isn’t there. It’s really difficult to get yourself going again. It’s possible, but it’s a work in progress as each day goes on. When I was writing this stanza with the parallels of “After being knocked over…”, I was talking about my own depressive states. It’s difficult to go through depression time and time again. After a while, you cease to feel, but deep inside of you there is still a little hope left. A slight side note, but if you know me as a person, then you would know that I don’t usually curse unless I stub my foot – usually meaningless or if I’m really angry. As I’ve gotten older, I know how to write with curses. The way I use them is to express anger and frustration rather than tone because it wouldn’t be authentic because I’m not one to curse. I just use them sparingly and if it’s necessary.

In the third stanza, it talks about recovery and seeking for my own strength/voice. It’s about questioning your own identity until you find something you’re comfortable with. All these questions are about voice are filled with imagery, but they all generally talk about how you could belong with various methods of using your voice. Personally, this stanza was the most enjoyable to write because I got to play around with words and what fit into a voice. There is kind of a theme with the questions and The Great Gatsby.

In the final stanza, it talks about the final definition of a voice. It wraps everything together from start to finish about voice, bravery and dependency. For my own interpretation of my poem, I would say that dependency is okay as long as it doesn’t turn into obsession because it helps motivate and drive someone. We are people who need others. We thrive on other people’s presence even if you are an introvert. It’s nice to watch or talk to people. You just need to appreciate the beauty that everyone carries in their own way and how we’re not all that different.

Be brave and have a great day!

Alice

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