Peer Review by Christy Wisdom (United States)

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Stay Awake, or Writing a Poem About Not Sleeping at 3AM, Which Contributes to the Problem I Suppose

By: rainandsonder


Smoke-wreathed mornings and
black-ichor nights:
bags like sideways moons
under your eyes
and the feeling of drowning
in your own blood.
Watch the walls
until they swim with
the breath of the sleepless
and a thousand thoughts
like tally marks.
Stuffy nights and
freezing days,
a heartbeat under the bed,
a heartbeat scared that if
it slows it might stop---
if your heart drums through
the night and no one's around to hear it,
what's to say it's not there?
The shapes behind your eyelids
give you bad dreams
so best to stay awake tonight.
Smoke-wreathed thoughts
and black ichor heart.

I'm honestly kinda proud of this but I'm afraid it's too pretentious. Thoughts?

Peer Review

I love the descriptions in this piece. It's very beautiful, and has a sort of dreamy quality to it. I also like how its written in second person, although you can clearly tell that it's talking more about the narrator than another person.

I'm sort of confused about the "and the feeling of drowning in your own blood" part. Why would they be drowning, or why would they feel like that?

Reviewer Comments

I have to say, I really love this poem. I like how it plays with the concept of what insomnia feels like, and at the same time wanting to stay awake because you're afraid of the shapes in the darkness of your eyelids, and the idea that if you're all alone, who's to say you're still alive. Again, really great poem. Probably one of my favorites of yours :)
Happy writing!