Paisley Blue

United States

they/them | 6.2.2020
genderfluid | christian

Message to Readers

thanks to _Peanut_, Writing4Life, and FantasyOtter12 for the very helpful reviews!

Yellow Rose Baskets

August 9, 2021


Englishman stands out on our all-American block. The sun molds around his sweater vest and caresses the flowers he bends over. Daily he prunes them, coddling each bloom.

I hide behind the bush parting our houses, knees collecting dirt. He never strays from his yellow roses. Mom's flowers have brown leaves; Englishman's baskets whisper perfection.

With enough care, maybe they'll never die.

Englishman stops coming outside. All the neighbors talk in low voices and wrinkled foreheads.

I sneak to his deck. I bend over the flowers and caress the rounded blooms, and run my fingers along their plastic stems.
8.2.2021

Print

See History
4

Login or Signup to provide a comment.

38 Comments
  • don't you see the starlight (#TS)

    OH MY GOODNESS! ELL! CONGRATS! YOU DID IT! well deserved!!


    about 2 months ago
  • barelybear

    Heyy just wanted to say I love this!! I thought I’d commented before, but apparently not (ahah oops) Anyways I probably would have said something like wow this is really amazing
    But uh WOW THIS IS REALLY AMAZING!

    CONGRATSSS!!! Very very much deserved, and I’m glad to read it again c:


    about 2 months ago
  • ~Zoe~

    CONGRATS!!!!! I love this :) <3


    about 2 months ago
  • The_Sunrise_Queen

    WOW! I love this a lot!
    CONGRATULATIONS!!!


    about 2 months ago
  • sci-Fi

    AHHH CONGRATS!!!!! u 10000% deserve to win, this is incredible<3 <3


    about 2 months ago
  • almost flora kane

    congratulations friend:))) you totally earned it!


    about 2 months ago
  • philomel

    This is so good! Every line is deliberate and builds up to an incredible final line. Congrats!!


    about 2 months ago
  • rwong

    OMGGGGG ELLLLL AHHHHHH IM SO PROUD OF YOU AND YOU EVEN SAID YOU DIDNT THINK YOUD WIN A WHILE BACK WHEN I FIRST READ THIS AND OMG LOOK AT YOU NOWWWWWW 2ND PLACE DUDE OMG YESSSS SO SO PROUD


    about 2 months ago
  • ava_grace

    Hey, congrats! This was beautiful!


    about 2 months ago
  • ~wildflower~

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!


    about 2 months ago
  • Nikki

    OMGGGGGGG CONGRATS!! you deserve this every single bit <3


    about 2 months ago
  • SunV

    AH I SEE I BROKE THE CAPS CHAIN SO I"M JUST ADDING MY PART CONGRATULATIONS!!!


    about 2 months ago
  • SunV

    ohmigod paisley yayyy congratulations on the win!!! this is really really deserving, i'm so sorry i couldn't get a review in time :( but it's beautiful all the same i don't think my review would have mattered though lol
    once again CONGRATS!!!


    about 2 months ago
  • lucida

    CONGRATSS!!!


    about 2 months ago
  • MaryamWrites

    CONGRATS!


    about 2 months ago
  • FantasyOtter12

    CONGRATSSS OMGG FINALLY SOMEONE I ACTUALLY SEE ON THIS SITE ENDED UP AS A FINALIST :DDD


    about 2 months ago
  • mirkat

    liikkkkeeee whhhhattt this is epexctalarrr!


    about 2 months ago
  • mirkat

    PAILSEYYYY BLUUUUUEEEEEEE EELLLLLLLLO AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH I AM I AM OVER THE MOOOOOOON FOR UUUUUU


    about 2 months ago
  • Anne Blackwood

    Re: <3<3<3


    about 2 months ago
  • Anne Blackwood

    OH MY GOODNESS ELLIOT!!! I JUST SHRIEKED OUT LOUD. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!! YOU DID IT AND I AM SO SO HAPPY AND PROUD!!


    about 2 months ago
  • Writing4Life

    YESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYES!!!! QUEENNNNN YOU GOT 2NDDDD!!!!! I'M SO PROUD OF YOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!!! You 100% deserve it!!!!


    about 2 months ago
  • ultramarine

    Ahh congrats!!


    about 2 months ago
  • Writing4Life

    Even more gorgeous!


    2 months ago
  • solarflair

    re: well, the minimum page count for an amazon book is 24 pages. assuming you do one per page, you'll be alright. i honestly forgot how many pages my book has and i didn't number them so lol. but at the end of the day, that doesn't matter. some poetry books get along just fine with 20-30 poems. others have 100 pages or more. that's one of the cool things about putting together a collection. there's no set length.

    and i came up with the title after i wrote everything. it came pretty naturally once i took a look at the general themes. i find that stressing about a title before your poems are finished will just lead to your creativity being stifled. i would suggest waiting on it--then once your collection is finished you'll probably have a good idea of what to name it.


    2 months ago
  • psithurism

    re: aww thanks, that's the little dark academia poet living inside my brain escaping. lol i just realized how odd that sounded.


    2 months ago
  • solarflair

    re: i went through the exact same phase with my book. i thought i was ready to publish but then last second i completely transformed my book. but yeah. it's completely ok to know your strengths and weaknesses, but make sure that you focus more on the positives. it was the best move i could have made to scrap some of that material though, so don't be afraid to find what works and what doesn't.

    as for covers, i know minimalism is really popular right now for poetry books. personally, i looooooooooove the look of a book that pulls it off. it's a pretty style that is easy to do.

    but anyway what i did is i looked up some covers for inspiration and went from there. if you know a popular style that you like, then there will probably be a lot of inspiration online. for designing my cover i used canva (synonym for amazing.) if you don't want to fork over money for a crazy technical software then canva or one of the other online editors is the way to go.


    2 months ago
  • solarflair

    re: oh yeah minnesota has a ton of lakes (or so i hear.) i was actually up in chicago and wisconsin recently and it was so so pretty. a different type of pretty than where i live but still.

    and yes it's good to have it over. i enjoy school but it was getting to be too much.

    and driving scares me too lol. i can barely get on an elevator i just hate machines.

    and yep today i took it a little easier and won a couple of matches so

    and yep i've been working on the cover. i enjoy graphic design but not enough to actually be one lol..

    and it was pretty overcast here as well. it's so smoky cause there are fires in the mountains. hopefully, some rain comes


    2 months ago
  • Yellow Sweater

    Re: Yes!!! It's out next June! Okay, details... So it's going to be published by Poetry Northwest. I have to have a finished manuscript ready for editing by the end of January which is absolutely terrifying. The book is kind of half-formed at the moment. I have so much content, but only vague ideas of how I am going to organize it. I am pretty sure it's going to be essays and poetry though. I just put together a document of a bunch of my old poetry but distilled to its (mostly four-line) essences. That poem I recently posted was from that doc. I have some titles ideas: New Doctrine, Condensation, Spikenard... Brainstorming titles have been so much fun, but I probably should have a finished manuscript first hahaha. I have an insane fall quarter ahead of me. I just registered for classes: Ancient Greek, American Law, and logic, and I have a shit ton of work-study, and I have to finish my book. For someone who is as lazy as me, this is existentially terrifying (but kind of exciting also!!!)


    2 months ago
  • solarflair

    but as for the book i am to the point where i can basically snap my fingers and it is released. i wanted to see if i could gain some traction on IG before i publish but irnoically i've gotten the most amounts of followers when i'm inactive lol. i'm thinking sometime this month i will release it.


    2 months ago
  • solarflair

    re: ooh that sounds like a fun time. i love nature. i have never tried any activities on the water before lol... which is weird considering i live next to a giant reservoir. i actually hate swimming too (though i can swim in case anyone here has something against me.) i watched the olympics though and canoeing looks super fun. it's pretty amazing how good they are.

    so yeah the book lol

    i had some summer college courses and i also have drivers ed. i just finished my college and passed everything (woohoo), and i thought i would have one good week of summer and relaxation before high school starts up again... but i was wrong lol. i have tennis tryouts for the entire week and they get pretty competitive. i'm a competitive person myself so i do everything in my power to be the one that runs the fastest, does everything the quickest, hits the hardest, etc.

    and it hurttttttttts. it was 90 degrees today and on a tennis court it's around 15 degrees hotter. still won't keep me from doing my best but i'm considering toning it down a notch to save my body.

    i had a good and relaxing night tonight though. went over to my best friend's house. some of my other friends were there too. we played cornhole and a made s'mores. and i was not aware but two people who are more musically talented than i am played the guitar and we did a little unscripted worship session. it was a good night to connect with friends and spiritually too cause i'm finding i need that with all the crazieness going on.


    2 months ago
  • solarflair

    i want to meet the englishman

    btw how are you


    2 months ago
  • crystalline•galaxies

    i love how the character is just described as “englishman.” it gives him such a mysterious and compelling vibe.


    2 months ago
  • rwong

    woah ok just realized i forgot to actually read/comment on this piece *sigh* im so scatter brained at the moment arghhhh anywayyyy dude that ending though. really hit...the concept is interesting and spectacularly written, the descriptions are really vivid and its like im right there with the author...everything about it. i'd review but kinda busy at the moment w packing and stuffs and may be off the radar for a bit but also like i dont really have too much to suggest sooooo yea! anyway hope you're doing wonderfully, and have an amazing day!!!! all my love! <3


    2 months ago
  • rwong

    re: ahhh thank you!! im glad the piece (kinda) worked and made sense :) just realized i had a pretty serious typo so i had to republish it :/ i couldnt live with the fact that i used "solidarity" instead of "solitude" what was i thinking--
    anyway OMG YES OK WE DEFINITELY SHOULD DO THAT I SHALL TEXT/EMAIL YOU & MIR (wait are we actually gonna do this?)


    2 months ago
  • Coeur

    This is so impressively done!!


    2 months ago
  • FantasyOtter12

    Re: Maybe add a description in the line "He never strays from his yellow roses" or something? It might be just me idk


    2 months ago
  • FantasyOtter12

    Re: Glad i could help and thank you in return as well :)
    the plastic part was a little subtle touch at the end. for me it was too little too late, but maybe others picked up on that faster hehe


    2 months ago
  • FantasyOtter12

    wait does the younger character think that his flowers are taken care of really well, so they dont die and compares them to her moms dead flowers but in reality the flowers in his basket are fake? just thought of that after reading it like 3 more times lmao thanks again for the review :)


    2 months ago