try too hard3You say you want the real me,
I say I want it, too.
But how can I destroy me,
reveal myself to you?

We all of us have demons,
dark things we’d rather hide.
Though, honest, we’re not heathens,
still it can’t be denied . . .

That none of us is perfect,
no beauty is unflawed.
And what appears a defect
should sometimes be hurrahed.

But maybe that’s my downfall —
it’s too late, I’ve bought in.
Won’t listen to your windfall,
perfection is my sin.

You say you want the real me,
I say I want it, too.
But how can I destroy me,
when I am my own glue?

Click below for an audio recording of this poem.

“I have never started a poem yet whose end I knew. Writing a poem is discovering.” – Robert Frost


Image: Google

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38 thoughts

  1. You’ve just made yourself a gluon, colorful and unpredictable in the quantum world, who obeys perfectly the uncertainty principle.

    Verse 11-12 are interesting in the change of rhythm while you lament about occasional imperfections, which actually are not. I can see that you put in much time and emotion in this piece of work.

  2. reminds me of my favorite Pink Floyd – Final Cut by Waters…

    And if I show you my dark side
    Will you still hold me tonight?
    And if I open my heart to you
    And show you my weak side
    What would you do?

    • Thank you, Johnny! I think this is one of my best poems so far… Hopefully they will just keep on getting better. I really appreciate your comment! And I liked the “glue” line, too. :) Hope you’re having a great day!

      • I read that, it’s a clever and well composed image. I’m assuming the white area is glue? I would like to think it is. Very fitting with regards to your poem Jess.
        I admire that you choose rhyme as your poetic voice, it’s difficult to do well because so much focus is put on language structure, and on finding appropriate words that at the same time convey a sense of flow to the story being told. You do it very well, and you humble me.

      • Wow, what a compliment. I am honored. I don’t do it well all the time! There are a lot of poems I’ve started that never see the light of day… You’re right that creating both rhythm and rhyme while conveying meaning is not always easy. I definitely rely on and a thesaurus at times!

        I lucked out with the image. Always find pictures to accompany my poems after I’ve written them… Found this on a quick search of Pinterest last night. After I’d read the text, I was sold.

        Thanks again so much! Hope you’re doing well!

      • Maybe the unfinished poems are exactly as they should be and they are just waiting for the right moment.

        I’m doing good, immersed in study once again (now half way through a languages degree), linguistics is kind of my thing I suppose so I’m loving it.
        I hope you have a great week Jess, and I look forward to reading more of your lovely work.

  3. Incredible poem Jess, and also listening to you reveal the poem in your own voice made it even more special. To me, it is a poem of hope but also very sad in that in order to gain something, you give up so much. Makes the line “perfection is my sin” stand out so clearly among the others. Beautiful.

    • Thank you so much, Randy. This one comes straight from the heart (as does all my work, haha). To allow oneself to be vulnerable, to take that risk — and to accept our imperfect selves — certainly *is* giving up a lot. But only by doing that can we gain — anything, really… So I think you’re right. There *is* hope in this poem.

  4. Another poem of yours that has dark undertones and uncertainty. Glue…it’s a word you don’t hear quite a lot in poetry. Interesting that one stanza is italicised. Is it for emphasis?

    • You’re a keen observer, Mabel. :) I italicized that stanza because of its rhythmic difference from the others. I’d actually like to rewrite it — most of my poetry takes at least a few drafts — but I was too excited about it to wait to post it was “perfect” (if there is such a thing).

      You’re right that a lot of my poetry contains sad undertones. Melancholy is my muse, it seems — it’s that introverted artist part of me — but that doesn’t mean I am unhappy. Rather, I am… thoughtful. :)

      Hope your week is going well! Always love chatting with you!

      • The italicized stanza has the same rhythmic structure as its previous one. How’s that broken? I know your sound recording isn’t quite faithful to your poetic rhythm anyway, but saying “it’s *too* late, *I’ve* bought *in*.” sounds alright to me. A short pause before “bought” makes it sound better and more natural.

    • Haha. You’re so sweet! My voice is soft and silly, but I can’t really change it, so oh well! Hope you’re doing well!!! Thanks for reading and listening. :)

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