My collection of these poems is tentatively titled "The Medication Chronicles." When I say "Medication," I'm mostly referring to psychtropic medications. These include antidepressants, antipsychotics, mood stabilizers, anxiety medications, etc.These medications have been an ongoing theme in my life recently - not because I'm taking them. Rather, I was a psychology major in college. I did an internship, worked part time, and am now a full-time residential counselor at a home for children with behavioral and emotional challenges.
Medications with children has been a huge topic of controversy in the world and in my life. Inside my heart, it just feels wrong. For a class of mine, I had to research the topic for a debate, and it just reinforced those feelings. These medications are typically not tested for children- they are created for adults but used on children regardless. We don't know long term effects, and that's just plain frightening. However. Working with these children on a daily basis and seeing first hand the difference between those on their meds and those off their meds, it's night and day. Though I hate the concept of drugging 8-yr-olds, sometimes it's all we can do to breathe.
This collection is a series of poems about my experiences with these kids. Some is fact, some is twisted truth, and the rest is utter fiction. It conveys my feelings on the matter - on meds and my job.
I welcome your comments, critiques and suggestions. 3nodding
screaming red mouths and
friends who no one else can see
whisper in his ears Pairing of scream and whisper is nice.
clouding his vision,
helping him to decide - Go 'helping him to decide' seems incomplete somehow, and gives him more agency than in the rest of the poem, where he's confused and driven and falling but not an agent in it.
attack. Attack. Go--
they hide in shadows
and call out to him in his dreams,
confusing what we've This stanza break really bothers me - it breaks mid-though, unfinished. It grates.
taught, muddling the
little that he thought he knew,
driving him to run
to hit, scratch, bite
to dig nails in and This line being two syllables short is really effective: it makes it stand out. I like it.
never pull them out.
or just imaginative,
his mother's got it
too, and we all pray
for his clonidine at six -
he'll close his eyes and
fall into dreams and
understanding until at
last, we too can breathe.
I like the structure of a series of senryu. The highly ordered format works well with the subject matter.
tough guy number one:
ingenius with slinging slurs
on education slurs on education aren't as common as the next two named, so this seems like a false start to something else entirely
race, and sexual the comma here annoys me: you have no comma after the first item in the list, so it's stylistically awkward
preference, and he could name
and ace every woo internal rhyme
level in call of
duty; he's only seven
but he knows his s**t. the juxtaposition of harsh language with his age at the end-lines is excellent
tough guy number two:
he's got swagger to admire the half-rhyme of swagger/admire is odd
and biceps of steel. biceps of steel isn't a normal child-image. Probably deliberate, and so well done in having it jarring
with a smirk for the
ladies, he knows how to shake
it in the face of
women who could care Do you mean could or couldn't care less? Also this entire image is strange, and not as elegant as the first
less, who could be his mother,
just to get a rise-
and though they both can
throw a punch or break some teeth,
can shatter my skull
both of our tough guys
wake up each morning to change
soiled piss-soaked nightmares.
Repeatd structure ties the series together well. Last stanza has effective punch.
-I agree. Helping to decide isn't as strong as it could be. Hmmm. I'll ponder that.
-Stanza break's a result of the form. Any suggestions? XD I have one idea to fix the break, but then it muddles the next couple of lines.
-Damn it. I'm glad the short line is effective, but I wanted to stick with the form. It might work well, but I'd prolly get called out on it. Argh.
-i see what ya mean. I can try to reword it. it was meant as education level (like, bullying the special ed kids) - did that come across ok?
-comma removal is super easy. =]
-heh. i didn't even notice the internal rhyme. XD
-it was deliberate. that and swagger. lil kids should not have swagger. lol
-i think i meant couldn't. XD oops.
-i see what you mean with the strange image. i'll think about it. if i can't come up with anything better, oh well for now... but i'll work on it. that image was meant to represent how a kid likes to be oddly sexual and ridiculous when he's evil hyper, shaking his butt at us. XD.
young girl as twitchy
as an addict in withdrawal
tries to sit so still
that though her body
has yet to move, it vibrates
faster than the wings
of a hummingbird.
her small form buzzes around, 'around' seems imprecise: it implies directed movement, when she's trying to stay still. Around a fixed point would almost work except for the syllables, but as it is, the preposition detracts from the image
and jittery knees,
as she tries to sit and wait
you have to take care
to never say no but get
creative and think,
like "well maybe not
now" or "we can try later"
to soften the blow
or you'll have scratches
down your arm, and every
time you catch them in 'them' also feels very imprecise, and oddly so, especially since you explicitly say a young girl both earlier and later
your patience twitches much like
young girl's jerky knees.
Not as much to say on this one, as it was my favorite, and the form worked really well to enhance the ADD feel of it.
As a series, I think it works well together. It's tied together by type of main character, form, theme, and title, and they complement each other for lots of instability.
And yeah, the "around" thing. I was trying to think of a concise way to describe it, how even when she really is sitting still, you can almost see her insides buzzing, not quite hitting the skin. just bundles and bundles of energy trapped in this little form, dying to escape. XD