Peer Review by YayaZ (United States)

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Everyday Drowning

By: AtLeilaWriter

The sand beneath my toes pulls me closer to earth
She holds me tight against the waves the roll over my body
My head meets the surface and air rushes to replace water
My thoughts are cloudy like the gray, directionless sky
Cold water lapping in time with my strangled breaths
Drowned by the sounds of children swimming in low tide
Maybe if I hold on someone will come for me
I go down again, confusion and panic not showing in my eyes
which are shut tightly in effort to fight off hopelessness
My mind slows down as I stop fighting against the tide
I surrender to the water who decides to keep me captive
I'm drowning.

The voice of my teacher pulls me back to reality
She questions whether or not I understood what she has been saying
My head nods slowly as I rack my brain for an answer
My thoughts are blank like the paper in front of me
The hum of the ac guides my steady breaths
Which give tempo to the scat rhythm of pencils writing
Maybe if I keep trying it will come to me
I look down again, embarrassment and fatigue hardly showing in my eyes
downcast in effort to hide my feelings of hopelessness
My mind wanders again as I stop struggling to maintain focus
I surrender to the endless thoughts that rack my mind
I'm drowning.

Message to Readers

My WtW Poetry Comp submission! Looking for peer reviews.

Peer Review

As you've described the physical feeling of drowning to that of mentally feeling overwhelmed, I find myself relating to your tumult of emotions. I'm left examining my own struggles.

What kind of tone of voice does your teacher have when she pulls you out of your thoughts? Since you seem adept at personification, consider personifying her voice so that it seems like a cruel interruption to your "cloudy" and "directionless" thoughts. Quick question: was there a reason you didn't use punctuation except after "I'm drowning"? Consider putting punctuation in certain areas to break up the different scenes of imagery; a period after "roll of my body" would be an example of that.

"The sand beneath my toes pulls me closer to earth" and
"She holds me tight against the waves the roll over my body " are my two favorite lines. I love the way that the embrace of the sand is personified to be "tight" and suffocating. Normally, I'd never think of the sand as being a powerful culprit in the seas effort to drown someone. Your description forces my mind to think past my programmed thoughts about sand holding only positive connotations.

I wasn't quite sure where your piece was going when I first began, but I quickly fell in step with your poetic language and was delightfully taken aback when you connected the drowning scene to reality. In doing this, you made your entire piece a metaphor. Not everyone can put into words the sensation of mentally drowning, but your beautiful use of words did so!

Reviewer Comments

Since your piece is a unique blend of metaphor, I would suggest changing the title of this piece. I want other readers to appreciate your piece just as much as I did and by giving so much of it away in the title, it'll take away from the intrigue of your piece.