Discourse | Poetry Breakdown

Hello everyone,

I hope January is treating you well!

Discourse

There are a lot of discourses in my life
from the heavy pounding piano chords
unnaturally paired with the sharp voice.
They sound like a melodic construction site, so
I turn up my music and risk going deaf
just so I could have my own peace.

From the approval I try to seek, but it slips out of my fingers
and fingers are turned on me, shouting
“You ceased to try!”
Like the thread of fate wasn’t tied on tight enough
and I watch it fall into a void that whispers
“Just one step and you’ll be mine.”

From the aching past and the roaring current,
they stretch my frame and I hear my goodness
begin to pop and crack, leaking all over the floor.
All I can do is watch myself begin to die
while I get chastised for making a mess.

From my quivering legs in Louboutins and
carrying a red lip drawn and practiced to perfection,
my eyes can barely hold together my tears.
I walk faster and make it to work
and put on the mask I perfected before I learned how to wear lipstick.

From the many eyes I’ve gazed upon and a reflection of myself peered back
and I watched their hands, their mouths and their steps
in hopes that their gait can match mine
although that never quite works out
even though I have shattered hearts and dreams.

To the people who don’t throw out memories
To the people who don’t tip 15%
To the people who erase instead of color
To the people who don’t hold open doors
To the people who shout instead of love
To the people who loudly chew their gum
To the people who slap instead of kiss
To the people who deceive and smile
To the people who steal and never give,
I am like you
with the unbearable discourse
and the unheard story but
unlike you,
I am me.

This poem is about life and the harsh reality that surrounds it. When I wrote it, it was written out of frustration based on how things in my life are going right now. If you’re a reader who personally knows me, don’t worry – I’ll be alright. 🙂

Starting with the first stanza, I start with the image of dissonance as a visual and audio aid to discourse. When there’s discourse in your life, it’s never a pretty ordeal. Moving on to the second stanza, it’s about approval and finding a balance between being impulsive and ambitious while needing go through the time of being criticized and the temptation of easiness.

In the third stanza, it’s about the difficulties of living in the moment where you’ll be somehow reminded of the past but slightly forced to move on. It’s hard because most of the time, you’re not prepared for how fast time can move but once things are over, there’s no turning back. The “leak on the floor” can be regrets. I’m sure you’ve had many people tell you that you should avoid having regrets, but in my opinion, they’re kind of inevitable. Either way, you’ll have regrets – it will just depend on the weight of the regret and whether or not if it will weigh down your life.

In the next stanza, I realize that it could be a fight about gender, but because I am the narrator, I chose to have a female voice. It’s about the need to have a mask or different persona from your own when you’re outside of your comfort zone. Sometimes you want to give up, but it’s best if you continue.

In the fifth stanza, it’s also about regrets, but more specifically, heartbreak. As much as you can have an idealized person, they never will quite be as you expected nor will situations ever play out to how you envision them. There will always be loss and hurt before a time of happiness. And in the next stanza, the finishing, mic-dropping, change in pace stanza, it’s about the many discourse and little annoyance we see on a daily basis. Behind every person that does these things, there is a lengthy story that isn’t shown through their actions and we may assume we know their stories through their actions, but that’s never the case. We all make mistakes and we all have parts of ourselves that probably annoys someone, but that’s what makes us who we are. What a weird way to validate individuality, but it’s true.

Also, I wanted to make it clear that I think it’s a lowly move to compare someone’s journey with your own as a sense of motivation or a sense of satisfaction. Why would you feel the need to bring someone down just so it brings you up? We all have our fair share of hard times and good times, so the sensible thing to do would be to have empathy to the best of our abilities and sometimes all that takes is to listen completely. There will be times when they need advice. There will be times when they don’t. I have a lot to say about this issue, but I think I’ll leave it here before I get carried away.

Thanks for reading!

Stay warm,

Alice

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