It’s easy to romanticize the past,
that we once had it so easy
because damn,
it sure hurt a hell of a lot
at the time.

At the core of me is a
jaw breaker centre
filled with ghosts of all the people I could’ve been
all the tears I shed, in defence
and how they turned me to cement

All I wanted to say, realized
only after I’ve walked away.
Like trying to subdue a snowstorm,
I should have been Miss Behaviour
and turned back around.

I always thought we experienced pain now
because our future selves deserve more;
they’re worth more than this ache
and frankly,
they have more important things to tend to
than themselves.

We hurt now because pain hurts less (later on)
when we’ve already
quietly forgotten what we cried about.

But as it turns out,
it has been quite the effort
to keep afloat.
The promise of “later”,
a doll, dulled
waiting in the cold so long,
waiting for the water to run warm
that once I dipped my toes in,
the drastic change burned me, even so.


54 thoughts on “23

  1. “The promise of โ€œlaterโ€,
    a doll, dulled
    waiting in the cold so long,
    waiting for the water to run warm
    that once I dipped my toes in,
    the drastic change burned me, even so.”

    Fantastic work as usual, you continue to inspire me to become the writer I want to be.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Tylor J. Mintz

    Elle, I’ve really been enjoying your work. I find your poetry to be somber, darkly truthful and wise in a beautiful way. I also made sure to cast my vote for your article — which presents a viewpoint that more people (particularly of my gender) ought to be aware of. Thanks for writing. I’m Looking forward to all your future creative output!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is so thoughtful of you to say! I’m actually not quite as big a fan as this one, as I thought my concept of pain only hurting in the past because at the time, it’s the present–was not fleshed out enough. Something to work on! Thank you again for your support of me and my work. โค

      Liked by 1 person

      1. rishhu

        Ah, I see. Hmmm. Some poems you can just relate to, they seem to make such sense that you cannot stop smiling (or if the theme is too touchy to evoke a smile, the least you do is relate). In my first reading itself, I could relate with the words you speak here. This was enough for me, and I feel comforted. Great (for me, and from my point of view)!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. These are lovely lines:
    waiting in the cold so long,
    waiting for the water to run warm
    that once I dipped my toes in,
    the drastic change burned me, even so.

    My question is, Why the word doll? I would love to understand that. “Later’ a doll,” Loved the alliterative and assonant “dulled” following it but do not quite see why or where “doll” enters here. In my humble opinion each and every word choice matters in a poem, so if I am missing your intent, I would love to hear why you chose that word, what it means to you.

    Lovely poem otherwise. Simple, direct yet mysterious as well. And those closing lines are stunning.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Pamela!
      I chose doll because oftentimes we feel like we are floating through our lives, rather than being an active part of it. Being a doll is being at the mercy of someone else’s choice, or even like this poem, being at the mercy of your past self. Of telling yourself that there will be a perfect time to dip your toes in–finally–until you realize that the perfect time is one that you decide is perfect. Being a doll is to be dulled, to be complacent, to be floating through, not living. Thank you so much for your insight!


  4. Hey Sweet Lady! Just voted again!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

    You write now of something I’ve been contemplating so much lately. Your second paragraph shouts at me. I’m so ready to stop sucking on the past like it’s a jawbreaker. That’s a cowrazy wonderful, perfect image. Chew it up, swallow it and be done. I forget sometimes that everyone is walking around with that inside them. All “that”.

    Sending huge hugs and crossed fingers that You win! ๐Ÿค— Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi there!
      First of all, thank you so much for doing that for me! I appreciate your time and your care.
      I am not in first place, one of the competitors in the Undergraduate section is at about 730 votes, and I am at roughly 500. However, there are still 25 days left, and I am very optimistic at the content of my essay, as well as the authenticity of my support from you all! I am so motivated by everyone’s dedication to helping me, that maybe I’ve won already.
      Thank you again for your support!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I thank you a million times over! You are so sweet in your dedication, I hope you’re like this in everything you’re passionate about! See you soon!! ๐Ÿ™‚ โค


    1. I just checked now and Iโ€™m ahead in first place! Only by a handful of votes, but I absolutely believe it is from you and your gracious help. Thank you!๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป


  5. It hurts because the words are dripping with the truth and yes, we are burning everytime we indulge in that hope of ‘later’.
    Beautiful poem ! Loved the simplicity and the ease with which the message was conveyed.

    Excellent essay as well !

    Liked by 1 person

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