67

Find discomfort in the hem
of your occasion dress
zips on the side–
boys left behind
gawking at the sheer sight
of your lacy best.

Have you ever entered
a room filled,
familiar-faced
but not acquainted enough to
strike the ice?

All dressed up, nowhere to go
you arrive and yet
feel uninvited before
opening your lipstick mouth.

Surface-level small-talk: to
ask questions of others, to
keep conversation alive
I wonder if they sense my
mild polite engagement
as attention nonetheless.

My discomposure
a child nagging at my leg
pulling the sewn thread
and unravelling until I look
as naked as I feel.

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62

 

 

frothed, agitated

you’re always picking a fight

no milk, no sugar

 

 

 

60

I once had this beautiful silk dress
dotted with oil stains
I couldn’t get out.
I’d wring my knuckles raw
trying to scrape this pattern
from a spot only I could see.

I would question everyone:
“Do you see a difference?”
“Can you tell?”
I could feel it on me
like bullet holes in my shoulder blade
lodged into my skin
and yet I only quantified myself
if someone else noticed, too.

an impurity
a part of me
that ached from the inside
at a time I used to count calories
and revel in my whittling
8, 6, 4, 2, 0
I embarked to be even more invisible than
those defects I desperately wanted someone
to notice

I wonder if that girl with the silk dress
understands why I gave it up
and why it was that
she so desperately tried to
erase an imperfection that wasn’t really there.
I certainly don’t fit in those
clothes of a time long past
and I may never get to 0 again
but at least
my knuckles are soft again.

41

Everything I am
and everything I will become
is already within me.
All the tools I’ll need to cultivate internal growth
are hip-holstered, at my disposal.

I find comfort in that
there is nothing new that will become of me
but the fate that was decided
the day I was born.

Like an abandoned backyard set,
I thanked everyone who entered my life
for all they taught me
as I looked at that empty swing
nostalgic and grateful
for the way they’d leave.

“Everyone you meet has a story to tell you,”
forces us to take those coming and going
as gifts
of shaping us;
that they can’t resist leaving because
that’s what they were meant to do.

The lesson of leaving is not in the longing
clinging to the memory of a back, receding.
The lesson is in dusting off your jeans
and reaching to your hip
to find out what to do next.

 

Thanks to skycielo for the prompt “empty swing set”! If I use a prompt you’ve left for me, I’ll give you a shoutout!

37

Keep the candle alight
so you can see me
even with less.

Crescent moon:
those going through the hardest times
often seem the softest.
Check on the strong friends
because they’ve learned to glow at night
even with only a quarter of themselves.

If you often find solace
against someone else’s shoulder,
always be sure to leave the floor to them
when your tears are dry.

I’ve felt the helplessness
of losing a friend
who couldn’t tell his story
loud enough so I could hear.
Did we fail each other?

There comes a point where it’s up to us
to open our ears
pour some tea
and listen to the strong ones;
their stories of sadness are just as sad
as the ones they gave advice on
when the words came out of your mouth.

 

Thank you to skycielo for giving me the prompt ‘crescent moon’ and AP Christopher for giving me the word ‘solace’! If I use a prompt you’ve left for me, I’ll give you a shoutout if I use it!

Inspo from you!

Hi everyone!

First, I wanted to say THANK YOU to everyone following along my summer ELLEventure on my Instagram, @elleguyen, as I’ve been in my internship for a full month now. You’ve all been so sweet and asking how it has been going–and I’m happy to report that I LOVE it! It’s so amazing to be surrounded by brilliant marketing and PR minds, I’m learning something new everyday. I’ve even been given the responsibility of launching some campaigns on my own which is such a great experience.

Second, I’m sorry that I haven’t been as responsive as I usually am, but as always, I’m taking the time to leave comments on your blogs when you comment on mine. Everything is about taking and giving! 🙂

The thing with the right campaign is all about the right word choice. And since I’ve been in a bit of a blogging rut, I was hoping to pick your brain and find out what words or phrases you specifically love.

For example, my current writing ‘prompt’ list has some ideas like:

  • illuminate
  • an elementary school solar system styrofoam model
  • a beach and crashing waves
  • quiet defeat
  • addiction vs the real you
  • post-concert depression

Please comment below some words, places, descriptions, quotes, ideas or anything that really gets your creative juices flowing! If I use your prompt in a Sunday post in the upcoming weeks, I will leave a shoutout to your blog at the end of my piece, so you get that exposure too.

Thank you for your help!

Love,

ELLE

2000 Followers!

Are you guys for real??

When I began this blog on October 1, 2017, I was in search of a place to land. Somewhere to put my dozens of dusty journals filled with poetry, songs, short stories and anecdotes where they could catch a bit of sun and bloom. And my goodness, did they ever.

I had no idea I would find friendship in so many of you. I am unbelievably grateful for the endless support you have shown me. In reblogs, likes, comments, even in your help in getting me 4 100 votes in my scholarship essay! This community really is a village, and I am in love with it all.

I always get inquiries from readers about blogging help and I only thought it fitting to share those tips with you all today!

Please note that I put a lot of effort into this blog because I also use this as a portfolio for my professional life as a PR student. Showing that I can generate that traffic is integral to my work as a future communicator in my field. You and I probably have different goals—please don’t think that my journey has been grown naturally or of luck. I have read some incredible work from WordPress writers, and someone who is using their platform as a personal diary and someone like me who uses it as a portfolio piece will not have similar results. Do what works for you!

Without further ado, here are my top three tips to boost blog traffic:

1: When someone leaves you a comment, comment on their blog!
I can’t stress this one enough! If someone gives you that courtesy, return it. This is a community of writers who love comments and feedback from other writers. We are all here to learn from each other. 

2: Utilize your other platforms!
And I don’t just mean put the link in a new tweet—add a little blurb about what it’s about, or a great quote from it you love. Engage in the community by following hashtags! On Instagram for example, if you view the #poetry hashtag and follow/like some posts there, you’ll build a new connection on a platform that will link back on WordPress—and maybe get you some Insta-friends on the way!

3: If someone likes your post, like three of their posts.
This one is a bit aggressive, but stay with me here. Everything about traffic generation is giving courtesy back when it has been afforded to you. Maybe I’m just Type A, but I always remember those users who leave comments and likes on my page. When their blog comes up on my feed, I won’t hesitate to leave a few comments on their blog as an appreciation of their ongoing friendship with me.

I want to STRESS the idea that this blog takes time and effort. I spend at least two hours everyday—and I mean everyday—going through new posts, leaving likes and comments, optimizing my social media outlets and always writing new content in order to get those numbers up. On Sunday for my big posts, I am easily mulling over my page for five cumulative hours. There is A LOT of work behind the scenes; don’t be discouraged if we are at different points in our blogs!

Elleguyence is the first place I ever spoke publicly about my struggle with bulimia in my post, 18. I cried the night before, terrified that I would be judged or misunderstood for attention-seeking. I had a lump in my throat as I clicked “Publish”, and I cried again as my inbox FILLED with women telling me their stories, too. It was a rush of relief, knowing we weren’t alone (and we never were).

When we were born, we were put on this planet with other people. We are nothing without the support of each other, and this community has shown that to me tenfold. Please, don’t hesitate to ask me questions about this blog, whether it’s diagnostics, widgets, content creation and more, comment below!

Thank you all again for your support. This little pocket of the internet has really become a facet in my life.

Love,

ELLE