United States

"ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which i will not put."

Message to Readers

draft ii

the sun is set but all i see are the spaces between the stars

June 10, 2019


and i’m watching the blood
in the sunset—smothered red
(like the cuts in my toes from
rough pool corners or pink twisted 
shells on the fat spiky shore), sun
descending from a splattered ink
sprawl, the fiery orb going slow and
then fast in the impenetrable drop—
a waning disco, a clambering countdown
(like new year’s day, like every day
was a new year, gone again as the
tide washes the colors away).  
so it sets but all i see are the spaces
between the stars, smelling gory ocean
air hot as hellfire, feeling chapped lips
like burnt parchment as a tongue passes over,
tans like strips of cardboard that cost
raw salmon rashes.  “the sky is blue”
but the ocean is bluer, a hasty murderer that
sent salt spewing down my pinkened throat
and into the world inside, little mollusks
that burrowed into my wrenching stomach,
burning like the orb.  but the sun is set.  
so it is.

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  • rainandsonder

    i hate those rough pool corners so much. that line feels so vivid and... sensory, i guess? i like the adjective "gory" as applied to the ocean, it evokes an interesting mental image and tone. additionally, i love how you pull the reader in with the gorgeous imagery at the beginning, the "blood in the sunset", and i love how you start it with "and" but that could just be because i have a thing for starting poems mid-sentence. from there, you introduce the "main" description of the setting sun, and can i just say that the imagery there is absolutely visceral. there are so many lines that make me want to scream: the waning disco, the splattered ink sprawl, the part about new year's day, and of course the spaces between the stars. from there, the poem begins to take a more--- i don't know the right word, conversational? philosophical? it goes from an enthralling observation to a sort of thoughtfulness, while still retaining the gorgeous style, like the mollusk part, the whole line beginning "a hasty murder that sent salt...", and the part starting "feeling chapped lips" and ending with "raw salmon ashes." i absolutely adore this. if i could print it out and sleep with it under my pillow without my parents finding out and having an awkward conversation, i would.
    ...and now i'm realizing how long this is and how borderline-creepy that last lines sounds... but anyway, FANTASTIC work!

    almost 2 years ago
  • pencils.and.paper.roses

    In response to your comment, yes I am Budding Mae! :D just wanted to change my name for a while.

    about 2 years ago
  • r|A|i|N

    thank you!!!!

    about 2 years ago
  • Pi_Pen

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! How do I even describe such a poem??? The description, the metaphors, AGHALHSGAG! I love the use of the parentheses to compare the sunset to other moments of life, so stunning- a surprisingly accurate description of how the human mind tends to wander. I also love the title... though it's not part of the poem, it doesn't express less than a verse of the piece itself. Truly, incredible work.

    about 2 years ago
  • JCWriter

    This is amazing! I love clear, vibrant imagery in poems, and you've definitely accomplished that here.

    about 2 years ago
  • Plausible.Poems


    about 2 years ago
  • r|A|i|N

    @loveletterstosappho thank you so much!!
    @ellie! yeah, this is one you’ve reviewed haha. i tend to change the titles of my poems from time to time depending on what fits. thanks for the grammar confirmation; i think there are some weird exceptions for indefinite pronouns but i’m pretty the one you suggested is correct.

    about 2 years ago
  • Ellie!

    Haha, I was only looking at the title so I legit just realized that this is a poem I reviewed with a new name. 'florida seems so blue these days' or something like that, right? I like the new one and it fits the poem well

    about 2 years ago
  • Ellie!

    The title is correct. If you were to say "the space between stars" then the title would be "the sun is set but all i can see is the space between stars." However, using "the spaces between stars" your grammar is fine.

    about 2 years ago
  • loveletterstosappho

    your description and use of parentheses make my heart ache-- i think my favorite lines are "(like the cuts in my toes from/rough pool corners or pink twisted/shells on the fat spiky shore)" and "'the sky is blue'/but the ocean is bluer, a hasty murderer that/sent salt spewing down my pinkened throat" and i also really love the use of "mollusks" rather than a word that's more common (e.g. snail)

    about 2 years ago