Peer Review by ruzahk (Australia)

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Beautiful Home

By: PalmLeaf


PROMPT: Sijo

They are like foreigners to the land in which they were born.
Beauty is a word they don’t know, “happy” means “small” in their tongue.
They search for a home they’ll never find, for they search only outside.

Author’s note: I wrote this poem around the theme of low self-esteem and a negative body image. I know how it feels not to feel at home in your own body, and I wanted to express that in writing.


Peer Review

I really was admiring of the way that the poem sort of alienates the self from the body by using a 'language' barrier ("in their tongue") and bringing themes of immigration, belonging and home to the discussion of body confidence. I think this is really cool because it separates the self from the body but it also sort of separates the self from others and from friends, family etc. It references the feeling that self-hate can spur where you feel out of place from everyone around you.


The poem evokes a really hollow and sad feeling towards something I'm sure many have experienced. I think this is a really beautiful way of showing the sadness of self-hate and prompting readers to perhaps consider being more forgiving to themselves.


Reviewer Comments

I thought of a possible interesting direction that you could take this poem - it might be cool to change the "they" pronouns to "us" and see how it sounds! I think this could be really interesting and create a sense that the problem is chronic, and add a bit of emotion to the 'suffering' that people experience with body image and feeling out of place! Just a weird little idea that I thought you might want to try :)