SS11 3rd Draft Alex

13 Jun


Our parents are just people

he said, it scared me

that he’d come to this revelation quicker

than me. The backing track

of the past eighteen years

rolled like mouthwash down a plughole.

They didn’t mean it.

Me and him, we are not almost even.

One day hairless from the temples down,

its about being beautiful at the right times.

Me and him. Days spent paused.

I’ll be a poet and he’ll perform.

Sleep the daylight, gone

on the prowl in our flannel shirt and pearls.

I’ll take things in and he’ll pour them out,

I absorb the image,

he throws himself into the crowd.







Sorry this is late!

One Response to “SS11 3rd Draft Alex”

  1. MouthyPoets June 16, 2016 at 12:56 pm #

    Hi Alex
    This is a beautiful succinct portrait of siblings – it’s great. I love the opening line, and also past rolling away like ‘mouthwash down a plughole’

    I wonder if you could avoid the repetition of ‘me’ in your 2nd and 4th line. Perhaps you could adjust ‘quicker than me’ to ‘so fast’ or ‘so much more quickly’ ‘so much quicker than I did/had’….Or alternatively you could adjust ‘scared me’ ….. ‘scared’ is an abstract emotion, but I’m interested in it – why would it scare you? Perhaps you might replace ‘scared me’ with some physical description of the reaction….e.g, ‘it made me shiver’ (just as an example)….after the line ending ‘plughole’ there might be room to expand a little on why him arriving to the though before you scared you….was he much younger? What was it that triggered the realisation? How does it change us when we realise our parents are just people?

    ‘We are not almost even’ is a fantastic line. In my opinion you could cut the line ‘I’ll be a poet and he’ll perform’ –it’s not such a strong line, and you’re going to be on stage performing this poem – poems that reference being a poet are a bit tricky (or perhaps just too common). I like the line break after ‘gone’ on the line ‘sleep the daylight, gone’ – how it gives us two ways of reading At the end you have the line ‘I’ll absorb the image’ – again I love the conciseness all the way through and how the language serves it, but I wonder if you could give us a specific image at this point. Which image might you absorb?

    – love the flannel shirt and pearls image too. Really enjoyed reading this, thank you.


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