Peer Review by paperbird (United States)

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the bride

By: Oscar_Locke


white -- sand, seashell, lips
swing open, my eyes and heart
bleeding pink gauze, sore

the altar

with love; the pulse of
muscles on bones, strapless dress
stapled to my skin

the altar

strips back; and the man folds out
furred and feral for
my beard, my caress, sweetness

the altar

waiting; the welded kisses
of engagement ring,
gasp alone to empty airs

the altar

hungry; howling for your face,
the maul of embrace
stirs and roams, the mind

the altar

runs out; wounded cry of crowd
silence; the sound of
love. i stand so still

the altar

for you; i now vow
the loneliness -- my
doves in black, rotting bouquet

the altar

darkens; the shore waves,
ripples; i am white
as dawn as dusk as day; O

the altar

Message to Readers

Comment how you think I should end this poem using a couplet.

Peer Review

i’m always astounded at how well you use words—everything is presented with immense concentration to detail. you use poetic puns and slowly introduce new ideas while keeping flow and tone steady. your consistency in this area is wonderful, and your poems are always worth reading for this reason.

the biggest improvement to be added to this work is clarity about your characters. i found two things confusing—“i” and “you”. it’s clear that neither is bride or groom, but it’s unclear what role they play in the wedding. is the first person narrator a spectator of the wedding who loves the bride? that’s what i gathered, but i’m not sure. and i have no ideas about who “you” might be—is it the groom?

Reviewer Comments

i highlighted most of the stuff i particularly liked, and also the things that need clarifying.
again, i’m totally in awe of everything you write. keep it up; i look forward to reading more of your work.