View Full Version : agoraphobic tendencies

May 1st, 2010, 05:09 PM
I feel a crust form
over my eyes,
too afraid
of blinking.

I cannot miss
the chance to see
the time lapse
of broken families,
or even worse,
happy families.

The stories I make up
as I watch the moving
of their mouths
cannot be far from true.

The neighbors to the left,
man beats his wife
generally around supper time.
You'd think she'd
just cook a little earlier
and avoid it all.
They tend to have a pity fuck
right there in the kitchen.

Across the street,
aunt and uncle raising
niece and nephew,
their father
is in jail and their
mother is on the way.

To the right,
old woman recently widowed.
Her husband had a gorgeous
garden that he would tend
every day of the year.
She sold his boat.
She threw out all the junk
in the garage.
She lets the dog inside
at night.
But she keeps that garden
just as he did.

So I sit here at the window,
tears begging
to quench my eyes,
and wonder what their
story for me could be.

May 1st, 2010, 05:36 PM
Intriguing, on many levels - the agoraphobia intro, fear of closing one's eyes; what is true vs imagined in the mind of the narrator in the descriptions of the family dynamics of the neighbors, bitter sweetness of the last verse.

I am a bit befuddled by the reference in stanza two about the "time lapse" - would that be referring to missing something going on w/ the neighbors? Like - "next episode"?

I also wondered what a "pity fuck" is! I must be too sheltered!

I was wishing at the end there would be some tie-back to the narrator's feelings or perceptions... all the observations of the neighbors - how do they relate - if at all - to the narrator.

I enjoyed the piece... a bit disquiting - maybe because so many families seem to be dealing with so much "true life" drama just like what is described. I think so many more sad situations could be added - one night viewing of the news alone could be inspiration for ten more verses, but then the reader might be bored or depressed by the reality.

Anyways, enjoyed your writing.

May 1st, 2010, 06:08 PM
some how when i copied this over i left out the final stanza and didnt realize it immediately. sorry about that.

i was attempting use time lapse like time lapse photographs, as in the "i" in the poem doesnt see everything, he just sees images of them when he looks out that window and compiles them all together into stories..... i dunno if i have to explain it it generally means it doesnt work.

if you dont know what a pity fuck is, im sorry, i wont be the one to enlighten you.

i agree.... i could make this poem infinitely long just going through the things i see from my friends and the people i just see around.... we all got our drama...

thanks for the comment... especially for pointing out my silly mistake

Chesters Daughter
May 1st, 2010, 06:18 PM
Truly you, G, and truly enjoyed. I'm going to pick a little because I know you won't mind. Loved S1, grabbed my attention and held on tight. Initially, I didn't like coming, thought forming would be better, but then it grew on me. Too many gerunds, though. May I suggest, from being too afraid to blink to eliminate one. I found some of the breaks a bit awkward, especially in S3. May I suggest:

The stories I make up
as I watch the moving
of their mouths
cannot be far from true.

In S4, I'd move earlier up to the preceding line. Loved pity fuck, sex so often follows violence, much cheaper than flowers. In S5, loved the double meaning of mother is on her way. In S6, lose the apostrophe in lets. Fantastic finish.

I found this piece extremely appealing for a purely selfish reason. I can completely relate to it. Ill health has tethered me close to home for over two years, and a little bit of agoraphobia has set in, I get jangly when I must go out, but I digress. I live across the street from an elementary school and I do a bit of watching just for the sake of seeing others and sometimes weave stories in my mind to accompany the snippets I see. So, my dear, I really do get this. Fine work, love.

Chesters Daughter
May 1st, 2010, 06:23 PM
Oh crap, we were posting simultaneously. I've read the final stanza, bravo, an even more fantastic finish. For what it's worth, even if I didn't indulge in watching, by necessity, mind you, *wink, wink*, time lapse would still have worked for me.

May 1st, 2010, 07:11 PM
Trent, you did it. I was enrapt! And have only one nit at the end. I have nothing but total appreciation and respect for your talent, exemplified here. I think it's your best. You, the voyeur, travel through windows and yards, picking up on neighbor's "existance" or "drama". You are writing about what I love to write about "The Nature of the Human Condition". And that you hone in a community makes for a very strong statement. That of people's treatment of each other. What's taken for granted.

You get across the agoraphobic's condition very well and I'm in the position to know because like Lisa, I have an uncomfortable touch of it. You did good!

Your ending was profound. Here's the nit which I think would make it "perfect".

So I sit here at the window,
tears begging to quench
my , eyes
and wonder what their
story for me could be.

I say, "no eye balls!"

Loved it! Laurie

May 12th, 2010, 08:15 PM
i could have sworn i responded to yall... im so sorry.

lisa, your suggestions have been taken in full. thank you very much, you are good at fixing my arbitrary line breaks. you my dear are someone i simply could not do without ^^
i found myself staring out the window for about 2 hours just watching the day i wrote this, and then i just started coming up with stories. so to prove im not crazy i wrote a poem and said the train of thought was "research"^^

laurie, you flatter me too much, i dropped the balls (thats what she said?)
thanks so much, love, you always leave me smiling. something few people are capable of.

May 12th, 2010, 09:57 PM
I love this one of yours Trent. You've captured the feelings and made me feel them too, which is as good as it gets. :)

May 12th, 2010, 10:53 PM
Trent, I flatter you. You flatter my flattering. What are we to do? Create our own club. You are the best! Laurie

May 13th, 2010, 12:57 AM
thank ya cindy

laurie. our club name. we needs it. as to what we are to do... flatter the flattering flattery until its unflattering

May 13th, 2010, 01:42 AM
It would get down right saccharin! :D

May 13th, 2010, 03:55 AM
I like the concept, and I can relate to it on the level that I’m always concocting scenarios about strangers.

However, the line breaks don’t seem to happen in natural places, that emphasize words or phrases, and it just doesn’t seem to have much flow or pacing -- and so I found myself just kind of plowing through it.

The 6th stanza felt particularly cumbersome to me – especially that you mention the garden once and then circle back to it.

It just seem like much of it could be simplified and in the process, you could make it read more smoothly.

Here’s an example.

The stories I make up
as I watch the moving
of their mouths
cannot be far from true.
Could be something like this:

I watch their mouths,
and make up stories,
that can’t be far from true.


They move their mouths,
I make up stories,
that can’t be far from true.

That their mouths are moving is implied. I don’t think any meaning has been lost and there’s some rhythm to it also.

You could likely go through it all and cull out words that don't do anything for you, like "generally" for example.

Good job. I think you've got something here, but I think it needs work.

EDIT: I should have said, Some the line breaks don't happen natural places. I was overstating things a bit.