|Reviews for When her ghost lays beside me|
| Gilee7 chapter 1 . 7/26/2006
[If she could see me now, / a woman, and not a child / I wonder what she would think?] Nice first stanza. It sets up what the whole poem is going to be about. You should have a comma after "child," though.
[If she could hold the torso] Personally, I don't like the word "torso" here. I think of a dead, lifeless body when I see that word. "Torso" gives me the image of one of those CPR dolls. And with the "full breasts" description coming directly after this, it's like a big sex doll or something. I don't know. Just doesn't fit with what you're actually trying to portray.
[She who saw me / last in dance class, tap shoes] Why is it that like every little girl takes dance class, and yet hardly any of them are still in it by the time they're a teenager?
[the / satin customs I rushed out of / the apartment with;] I believe you meant "costumes" here.
[My mothers fragrant embrace when it was all over. / My mothers arms while I cried.] Personally, I could do without both these lines. They don't do anything for the poem.
[Carolyn sitting on the bed next to the body] I know I criticized the "Sean" in "Sean's Hands," but that was different. Here I actually like the insertion of a random name. We don't know who Carolyn is exactly, but it doesn't matter. All that matters is that the author knows. It gives the poem a very personal feel, like this is a work of non-fiction.
[Knowing that I was seeing your body yellowing / in the coffin] This is a very strong image.
[If I could go back] You can't see italics in reviews, but you have both "I" and "could" italicized. "Could" is the only word that actually needs the italics.
I just went to a funeral last week. I didn't really know the dude who had died, but he was the father of one of my halfway-decent friends, and so I went for my friend. I think that's only like the second of third funeral I've ever been to. It was very strange. I didn't know anybody, and yet I'm shaking hands with all these people, saying "I'm sorry," which I know they've heard from a million other people, and those two words don't even seem to carry any real meaning anyway- they're just required. But yeah, I saw my friend's father lying in his coffin. First time I've ever seen him. Everybody else would just quickly glance at the body and keep on walking. I stood and stared, though. He didn't look real. He looked like a wax doll instead of a human. I wanted to touch him, poke him, see what he felt like, but that would be like an abomination of some sort, and so I didn't. But yeah, the whole experience was very surreal.
I haven't had to deal with the loss of a close family member . . . yet. My great-grandmother died when I was like five, but she was in her mid-nineties and had Alzheimer's. I often worry about my grandmother, though, who is the most amazing, caring person I've ever met. She's my hero. I don't know how old she is exactly, but I know she's pushing eighty, and it worries me. She's in fine health now; we hang out occasionally and go eat out and stuff. But I know that barring any strange unexpected casualty, she'll be the first death I'll have to deal with. I don't want to lose my grandmother. I love her so incredibly much. I was thinking about her the entire time I was reading this poem.
To address the actual poem instead of all this Dr. Phil stuff, I quite enjoyed it. I thought it was good, though definitely not your best. It's not as solid as some of your other poems, nor does it pack the emotional wallop that I figured it would. It's still an emotional poem, though. Very personal feeling. Touching, too.
Write on, Juliet. And . . . I'm sorry. -shakes hand-
| like a lover chapter 1 . 7/11/2006
heavy... I don't mean that in like, the cheapened "deep" sense, but more like a heavy feeling on your shoulders.
"If she could hold the torso/with full breasts rather than/kiss the curve of my honey/flavored neck"
honey flavoured neck, amazing.
| Halcyon Impulsion chapter 1 . 7/5/2006
Beautiful and full. For all the differences in the world, grief and longing remain something we can see in each other and so see in ourselves.
| Mass Hysteria chapter 1 . 7/2/2006
I don't know what to say really. I really enjoy reading your poetry. I don't know. I don't want to sound too silly; I guess since so many other people use the same exact words to review these other junky poems without really meaning it, but your poetry is just so entrancing, human and it "really brings in the emotions." I mean really, my eyes never water up reading stuff over Fictionpress, but your poetry does. This piece touched me because it reminds me of the mother in my own life.
Yeah, us humans, we are so frickin weird.
Thanks for writing.
| account not in use chapter 1 . 6/27/2006
breathless. i love the way your words affect me.
| breezy nostrils chapter 1 . 6/24/2006
creepy...yet it provokes emotions and imagery. nice work.
| The Breakdancing Ninja chapter 1 . 6/23/2006
The Breakdancing Ninja gives this a 4 out of 5. It expresses mature concepts that I enjoy reading about. It's not bleak. Refer to criticism below for further analysis.
The piece has its moment of being straight-forward; part of my frustration with poetry, not just at , but everywhere abroad is that, sometimes, I have this cynical nature about it. It comes with feeling a lot safer with most prose, which spells everything out.
This disarmed me with a simple quality, it held no bitterness in it.
I had to read this a few times over, but I think it means... well, here is the excerpt. [If she could hold the torso/ with full breasts rather than/ kiss the curve of my honey/ flavored neck] It is a more poetic version of the first line. The child only barely reaches up to the waist of the parent (grandparent, to be more accurate, but for the purposes of this analysis, I will use them interchangeably), and when the parent bends down to kiss the child, they nuzzle necks. "honey-flavored" almost looked like pretentious figurative language, but in order to settle my cynicism, I decided to think it meant, the scent and taste of a certain kind of shampoo, or the sweetness of youth. When that child gets older and more developed, they are charmingly at par, at height with the parent- "the torso/with full breasts" shows a deeper mother-daughter intimacy that surpasses the adnomishing relationship between the mother and the child. The actual words seem a lot more sensual than its meaning, but I've noticed that even in movies, there is a deep, autoerotic bond between a mother and a daughter- sexually charged and very emotional.
I'm a dude, but I'm pretty alright with my mom. We're good.
[unrecognizable? She who saw me/ last in dance class, tap shoes, the/ satin customs I rushed out of/ the apartment with;] After a few reviews under a different pen name, I've come to label this sort of thing as child-parent regret- a mother sees her daughter as an aspiring dancer who will grow up to be an underwriter for a real estate office or something. It's a lot like Christmas parties, where the uncle or aunt claims to have sworn you were four inches shorter and a little chubbier.
[Not understanding that as they slipped/ the communion in, and her eyes fluttered/ she wouldn’t be coming back.] I saw this in two ways. The "communion" could be, the people that gather around at her funeral, or the congregation. But I also saw this as the roman Catholic rite, where, at the time of near death, they absolve the person, say a prayer, and present to them a concecrated host and send their soul to heaven- I'm sure, that most families who watch this usually don't hope that the person'll die, and if they do, it's with wishes that they'll smile from the clouds- but that's the image I got.
[My mothers fragrant embrace when it was all over.] I like this sensory image. I remember even as a kid that my mom always had a good smell. Some perfume that she still wears. She used to kiss my forehead and hold me real tight after christmas programs, saying I sung real well (even though I'm near tone deaf). This had a good feel to it.
I wonder who Carolyn is. A close friend of the family?
[If you could see me falling asleep, suddenly/ inhaling the whiff of flowers,/ a scent that overtakes me from out of nowhere/would you rush to me again?] And in my friend's culture, you know the spirit of a family member has come to visit you, when out of nowhere, you could smell the fresh scent of burning candles. It freaked me out, because we smelled it one time and there were no candles in the house. I'm an idiot, so I said, maybe someone's barbequing, but I guess it would have been more appropriate to say: 'Welcome in.'
[Knowing that I was seeing your body yellowing/ in the coffin;] Christ, I see this.
[Survive inside the offbeat millenniumyou will never live through.] It really is an offbeat millenium. But it is a universal paranoia that all people presently living feel, like something is off-kilter.
[If I could go back -/ I’d pull the tissue, and/ chromosomes from my/ body until I was stripped/ done to the bones of/ that little girl, I would/ kiss your rosy cheek] This image, the idea of physically stripping oneself down to innocence is that purifying process that everyone feels in a major part of their life, which is accompanied with either guilt, regret, or this need to 'shed old skin'.
The titles to pieces are always hella important to me. They show the author's conscious (and if they're real good, Subconscious) summaries of their own work. "When her ghost lays beside me" in a literal, poetic sense means exactly what it says. Going deeper, I think the idea of revisiting innocence, seeing death, and remembering a representative of womanhood is accompanied with dreams, and spectres. Concepts personify themselves in people- you might know Mother for Gentleness and Father for Strength, that kind of thing. And for The ghost of Womanhood to lie beside the speaker is for the speaker's bed and ream world to be inhibited with the want , the feeling, the desire of maturity. The reminder of the cycle, the reminder of innocence long ago. The poem is right in sasying "If I COULD go back"- the poem recognizes that all you could do is go forward, and that childhood is something to be reminiscent of, but not something you could physically do, you can't strip yourself of what you've learned and experienced, no matter how much you're ignorant to it.
Old people in fiction and even non fiction are representatives of wisdom and the life cycle, and it makes me happy to know that your conscious and subconscious are roving around these concepts.
the poem was excellent, even if the line breaks were a little eclectic, as well as a bit frustrating (only because I'm not well-read when it comes to poetry). The imagery was sweet, succulent, crisp. It had a good authenticity to it and was fruitful and purposeful. Very awesome.
If you have any contentions with my reviews, questions, comments, or anything, just e-mail me. A returned review would be kind of nice- I've resorted to actually having to physically type this and beg for reviews, since it's becoming an almost fruitless to hope for an ample return. I only have one story up, and the chapters are very brief- not more than 450 words, more often than not, they're 300 or so. Maybe reviewing a chapter or two (or three) would help, something constructively abusive is what I prefer, it doesn't have to be more than three sentences, I'm not asking for much- if you have time to even review, that is.
Anyway. Enough begging. XD;
This was a good, refreshing read. I happened to stumble upon your name over and over again in other favorite authors and reviews, so I thought after all this time, I should come and see your work. It's awesome. Hopefully I'll see you again soon and we could bounce reviews off of each other.
Rock on, Juliet. Breakdancing Ninja out.
| kaylajac chapter 1 . 6/22/2006
Beautiful. You take the ideas of growing up and death and weave them together perfectly. This is really amazing, and I'm not just speaking empty words here.
| Fabian Cortez chapter 1 . 6/22/2006
Wonderfully sad, and beautifully composed. There is absolutely nothing I would change here.
| Chandra-Moon chapter 1 . 6/21/2006
Sweet, and sad. Different from normal, much more straight forward and direct, but still lovely and sad.
| MallowsWins chapter 1 . 6/21/2006
I loved how this portrayed the image of innocence as a child, naive and sexless. Then the image of a woman as the image of humanity, I suppose. I could almost see the innocence being stripped off as the little girl grew up, developed. Subtle differences between girl and woman seem to enforce your poetry here: the curve of a lip, the length of her fingers, her eyes. Its like as a woman developes (and this goes for men too, obviously, but for the sake of your poem we'll stick to the woman metaphor) life experiences change the body as well as the mind. And the contrast between this young woman and the Grandmother was so sad, you could feel the anguish, how much she misses her Nana. Such a simple emotion, but emotion is never simple really. I really enjoyed this poem, Juliet, but it made me sad. It spoke so clearly to me that I'm not sure if is not as complex as your other works or if I just understand it better. I'm really touched by this one.
| simpleplan13 chapter 1 . 6/21/2006
sad and beautiful... i love it