Friday, May 13, 2011 | By: Brianna

Poetry Friday -- Hate Poem

Despite Blogger's updates and hiatus yesterday, I decided to go on with Poetry Friday during which I will read a poem and reflect on it, write about it, or come up with ideas related to it for my writing. Simple as that!

Today I read "Hate Poem" by Julie Sheehan from a book titled Seriously Funny. It's an anthology from one of my classes last semester. When I first read it, I fell in love.
The beginning rhymes are really great as an introduction to the poem because it gets the reader used to the rhythm of the poem right away. But my favorite part about this poem is the concrete imagery. Well, semi-concrete. "The history of this keychain hates you" is just so completely brilliant, I want to write a line like that one of these days. With the history being abstract, but a history of a keychain evoking a thoughts of being attached to random house keys, backpack zipper pulls and all sorts of things. I also enjoy the line "A closed window is both a closed window and an obvious symbol of how I hate you." I love the meta-fictive strategy of bringing attention to the symbol being a symbol. And ending on an image is always classy.

Because this poem is about hate, a hopeless hate that might not actually be hate as shown by the "idealists in a broken submarine," write about love. Sure, it has the potential of being trite, but let's see:

I love you. I love you with all the running in fields of daisies, rose petals on the bedroom floor movie cliches that I can name. The callous on my right hand, middle finger, loves you. The backstory of this library DVD loves you. My voice, singsongy and teasing, loves you. With every autotuned note of contemporary music, I sing your virtues, from that cluster of freckles across your cheeks to the way your feet turn out at the toes when you walk. When the sprinklers are out in summer and I run barefoot through the soaked green carpet of grass, I love you. The empty fishbowl with the plastic flora loves you. This cup of pens, sixteen, loves you. This backpack zipper, teeth pulling apart, loves you. My hair in the morning: love. The way my voice cracks when I speak to you: love. That time when I sat a little too close to you and worried about if I should move over because maybe you might notice and be weirded out: love. I love you more than six year olds can spell and more than accountants can add. My heart beats with the tradition of making lemonade out of life's lemons. It sits as an empty glass next to the pitcher on a little girl's lemonade stand.


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