poetry critical

online poetry workshop

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Welcome!

Welcome to Poetry Critical, an online poetry workshop. To post your own poetry you'll need to create a user id by typing a name and password in the box above and hitting 'New User'. If you just want to critique or jump into the discussion, however, you can go ahead and get started!

Random Poem:

to be the lilting laughter you loved above your pen
mandolyn

i won't dye my hair the color of what i thought
 1
we were at one time- fantastic blood, though fading
 2
now at my french canadian roots–
 3
you probably never knew how close i was to kidnapping Banff
 4
and calling it my baby – as if i need another mouth to feed
 5
when mine is still chewing on your over-the-top titles
 6
sucking on seaweed for some good reason i still can't explain.
 7
if i tried i'm sure you'd drop a cactus down my shirt to remind me
 8
the desert has nostrils and the pacific was just
 9
a distraction so i wouldn't cough during communion
 10
thinking about your boat on my shore, wondering if it's fully stocked
 11
with saltines, grape juice and dirty words.
 12
what you didn't know is
 13
i haven't been to church in over two years
 14
since i fell asleep the last seventeen
 15
praying with my eyes closed
 16
 
 
i won't wake up all Disney and twirl out of bed on
 17
the sixth day to read you, or the fourth, or second
 18
depending on the number of autonyms auditioning
 19
but you always got the part and i purposely sneaked
 20
you snacks within the time frame i had to explode
 21
on paper, or in this case white space,
 22
throwing words like we were born to do, so damn diligently
 23
doubting a nun will ever show up with a ruler
 24
standing off to the side, singling us out, sipping on our sinful play,
 25
keeping her eye on my rehearsal– knees crossed,
 26
messy buns beginning a riot with the rubber band,
 27
watching to see how many chairs you stack
 28
and if your desk has moved closer to examine the strand
 29
of hair always pirating my cheek, preparing the plank for
 30
my next itch as i scratch your curtain call
 31
 
 
i won't count all the syllables in the sea
 32
or admire the way you teach the sand to steer my feet
 33
gathering each tic tac i threw, squaring my shoulders so
 34
i wouldn't slouch when you told me there was no patch
 35
on the inside of my eye, but if a seagull snatches my smile
 36
be sure to get it back–
 37
after that i promised to never order pancakes for dinner again
 38
or make cinnamon toast taste like spare ribs,
 39
though you still make my pulse pig out
 40
when your poetry shows up with a six-pack
 41
and you're holding a weed by its' throat
 42
 
 
i won't attack the wall that became a good friend
 43
as i aged, braiding my ideas into a journal, while charles
 44
was in charge of bologna sandwiches on wonder white bread
 45
and frito lay bean dip i dared an O'boise to impress
 46
studying everything off the grid that allowed me access through
 47
a barbed wire fence, forgetting what asphalt smelled like
 48
when i raised a barn in my sleep, in honor of all things
 49
Little House on the Prairie, because they slept to the sound of
 50
purring buggies and grasses being brushed by a bygone breeze
 51
instead of trotting around a bottle of pills to give them peace–
 52
and i did fall, i did break to some degree
 53
my mind became driftwood, while stars
 54
flossed the gap between loves teeth
 55
 
 
i won't matter to money, nor will it matter to me
 56
you and i had very little and we still found comfort in
 57
questionable food we poked,
 58
sitting in little heartsick hole-in-the-walls
 59
eating stale chips and salsa, being disciplined by dim lighting.
 60
you couldn't count my laugh lines or describe the actual,
 61
real life color of my eyes
 62
but i knew yours, regardless of how many lamps
 63
wore black eye liner and how many waitresses
 64
hosed their pantalones
 65
 
 
i won't beg a beard to come out of your face
 66
but i might look for a trace of one if you go grizzly on me
 67
and i get the sudden urge to analyze your adams apple
 68
asking what a philosophy major smells like
 69
baking at four hundred degrees in your backpack, or if you
 70
gave college the middle finger like i did...
 71
taking off because my heart was so sore and so stupid and it so sucked
 72
being a mashed potato, a side dish no one decides on right away.
 73
i wasn't sure if you ever understood me,
 74
but i still rolled my eyes at the clock because
 75
it knew how many times you blinked during the day and my
 76
eyes were prosthetic back then, basically praying for a pipe
 77
to burst inside this dream and have you hug me harder than
 78
a first kiss, tangling my hair like a real tornado would.
 79
 
 
i won't keep saying 'i won't'
 80
anymore
 81
because the warranty on this water bed
 82
you moved into my eyes
 83
is about to expire
 84
so i'm hogging all the covers
 85
for the next deep breath or so...
 86
 
 
still, i left you trails of ink between each
 87
season and hopscotched through the mess of medicine
 88
marked "only take a night"
 89
just to see what kind of trouble i could cause inside my head
 90
before the janitor showed up in a Silverado,
 91
assigned to a mustard yellow attitude, saying recess is over
 92
and i was just about to toss a paper airplane
 93
and cuss something so pretty at you, you'd finally
 94
love the sound of balloons popping, instead of some girls inflated
 95
ass parading around you...
 96
not that i was taking notes in the back row, knowing no one
 97
would be rubber necking or sticking their nose in my biz, which
 98
was of course, your initials on the paunch of my pee chee folder
 99
chain-linked by a series of chiffon smileys and safeguarded
 100
by a trapper keeper that eventually broke its' neck after
 101
blind melons sat on it, when obviously it was reserved for the cure.
 102
 
 
and U2 would have gone on with or without me, changing
 103
the course of the sun that left us feeling immature
 104
on the back porch of a mountain. i still lasso every hill
 105
that jumps in front of me, cram every cave and tree i
 106
can into the glovebox, hoarding gobs of solitude because
 107
chaos flicks fire and it's not the fun kind.. not the kind
 108
you find camping, covered in marshmallows
 109
 
 
had you known my feet were afraid of feeling the bottom of
 110
the ocean, how splinters became a fan of my skin, walking
 111
to the edge of a pier, to peer into Leviathans stink eye and
 112
ask for a glimpse into your guitar
 113
the one i used to touch when you weren't looking, in hopes
 114
the vibration of your transcendent soul still lingered, lapping
 115
at my palm–
 116
 
 
not once did i crumble into a paper bag and throw up
 117
when the moon told me your torch was in the hands of
 118
another creative soul, who most likely wore lipstick and kissed
 119
your face in places i used to believe were destinations where
 120
real love resided, and only there could one be sure that
 121
eternity made a down payment
 122
 
 
meanwhile my lips listened to burts bees go on and on
 123
about rejuvenation and romance and natural beauty
 124
being the strongest alcohol in the bar. had i known you
 125
were gazing at the same road map, juicing a pulpy sun
 126
for our slumber, snuggled tightly in a crevice you chiseled
 127
out of my youth, i would have grown you the largest coffee
 128
bean made known to Kenya and traveled your taste buds
 129
as you drank–
 130
 
 
only i was destined to ask for cherry syrup in
 131
my pepsi for the many years of not knowing how
 132
to get the smell of coffee into a liquid i could drink without
 133
telling my tongue to stop curling as if i had sent it to its' room
 134
and to this day when i smell that morning roast riding shot gun
 135
in the kitchen i want to make love to caffeine just as bad as i want
 136
to peel back the blankets on your heart and climb in.
 137
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
now, i will wash your feet
 138

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