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About Literature / Artist Member Grae MatternFemale/United States Recent Activity
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I've decided recently that I need to delete most of the old stuff on here. I'm probably not, but if you want to read poetrythen ignore all old stuff.

Thank you so much for either if you choose to favorite/comment.



i don’t remember the first breath of air
these lungs took in. i can’t recall
the way it burned through my body, leaving a
trail of embers and lightning and ozone and
life. i imagine i cried.
but since then i have learned that sometimes
to begin to exist you have to burn all the old out of you.

let me tell you, i have never hated you more than i did today.
and i have never understood you more either:
you are not a boy who is running from something
he finds he doesn’t believe in anymore.
you are a boy who is turning into a man much faster
than he ever imagined, who knows he has to leave
but doesn’t know how to do it fast enough
for the pain to be minimized.

don’t go slow. don’t be afraid anymore, don’t be afraid at all.
don’t be sad, either. smile again, maybe. a lot. build
yourself a new smile no one has ever seen before,
out of all the stupid shit that has ever made you cry.
don’t lose your honesty or your faith or the selfish
things you’ve learned to take for yourself.

burn. build yourself a funeral pyre, light it and cast this life behind
you—you have always been more than what
you have cut yourself down to. so burn. then bloom. you wanted this;
you deserve this too. you deserve whatever it is
you find yourself running towards and i hope it’s good.
i hope it’s the very best.

i understand you and i understand you and i swear
i am trying to understand that one day you will put the key in the ignition
and gun it away from here and you will never have
to turn back. you may want to for a bit, but trust me,
i have known you longer than i have not known you and
i know that you never will need to.

but years from now when you have learned
all you deem necessary, when you have triumphed
where you once failed, when your feet itch with
the need to run again and your fingers grasp
for something they can never truly hold, i want you to
open your lungs and breathe in and remind yourself to remember
that this is how it feels to burn for the very first time
and i hope you cry, too.
re: "Stop Romanticizing Poets 2K14" summary

nascent (adj) latin=nasci: to be born- beginning to exist

(part of a short collection of pieces that I may keep writing that I like to call  "honest poems to people who deserve my honesty")
This is how I write my poems:
You’re blonde and you have blue eyes.
You’re the perfect subject for my next great hit,
a long rambling epic or a two page sonnet
which would start by comparing your hair
to rays of the sun and your eyes to the ocean
at daybreak. Even if you’re more of a dishwater blonde
than sun-colored, and your eyes are less ocean and
more sky, I swear I write this poem and think
vaguely of you.

But here is a secret: I’m not writing a poem about you.
I’m writing a poem about the idea of you.
And I don’t know if it will be a love poem or
a break-up poem or a “please don’t go home and
commit suicide” poem or one of those
heartbreakingly honest poems that feels like
you put your pencil on paper and bled.

I don’t write poems like that often.
No poet does, not really,
we write poems about you and your blue eyes
because we don’t like how bleeding feels,
and it is much safer for us to pretend to fall in love with the
span of your fingers over our chests as we exhale
poetry that ghosts over your lips before falling into the dip
of your collarbone and pressing its words into your heart.
To be honest, we are hardly ever honest with you.

No, seriously, date one poet and you’ve dated them all.
Next time you get a love poem from a poet built out
of pretty words and prettier promises, look at
the eraser smears, look at the crossed out words—don’t
ignore them because in the next line you are compared to a
nebula. Study them until you realize that poets care more about
syntax and diction than they ever will about you.

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t fall in love with poets.
I’m saying that you have blonde hair and blue eyes and so
do millions of other people in the world. I’m saying fall in love with
the poet, not the poems he slips into your locker when you’re
trying not to look like you’re looking. I’m saying that
you do not embody the world, that it is not your job to rise
with the eastern sun like a phoenix kissing the world good morning.
I’m saying that all you are is human.
That is the kind of special that doesn’t make good poems.

But if you write that down and repeat it
over and over and over again, you won’t need poets
to tell you about the lightning rod of your spine
and the weather veins in your wrists.  You already will know
this, be able to feel the energy thrumming through your body.
You believe it, you become it, you make yourself
into the most beautiful poem you’ve ever read.
You don’t need poets.
We need you.
We need you to think that the only way you’ll ever be
special is if we tell you about the beauty of your soul,
about how big space is, how tiny you are,
how fucking incredible it is that your eyes are blue
and your hair is blonde.

Stop listening to poets. Be satisfied with your own
flesh and blood and bone. Love the dirt crusting your fingertips,
the scars marring your skin. Breathe and take another step.
Remind yourself to look at things for what they are.
You are real. And that is better than any poem
that a poet will ever manage to write.
Stop Romanticizing Poets 2K14
So I'm pretty sad today. Well, right now. Most of today was a really good day, but then I got some news from a friend and it just kind of turned crappy really fast. 

this poem really has nothing to do with any of that but whatever, enjoy this poem (and don't take this poem that seriously, there's a lot of lines that are really flowery and stuff and they sound really bad but they're supposed to be 'classic' poet-y lines) and have a very nice day!
1. i get up at ten.
this is an accomplishment.
by eleven, i’m awake enough to miss you.
to be honest, that part never goes away—
but eleven is when the typewriter grows fangs
and threatens to swallow everything i am
if i don’t put a name to the feeling. even the dog’s
tail does not wag. he keeps watching the door.
he will not even touch his food until the sun has
set as deep as possible. he is giving you every
chance to come back.

i try to tell him there’s no use,
that you will never come back.

but dogs don’t understand things like that,
don’t believe in the concept of ‘never come back’.
they believe in the sound of a key turning a lock
and the inevitable stomping of feet on the welcome mat
no matter how many times they’ve heard
the car engine start and the crunch of gravel as it pulls away.

2. this must be what missing you feels like.
i have lived lifetimes in the minutes i keep breathing.
i keep breathing. this is an accomplishment.

3. i would mail you a letter, but i do not know if
it can reach you where you have gone,
and i’m not sure if i’d handle it well
when it is sent back, unopened.

4. come back.

5. talk to my dog. tell him you still love
him, tell him you miss him like crazy,
tell him he should eat some food,
tell him he did nothing wrong, but if he did
you’d forgive him.

6. forgive me.

7. maybe we should all love like dogs do—
wholly and even when we know better.
maybe we all already love like that—
painfully and even when we’re alone again.
i don't have a dog
a poem with two of my favorite things: numbered stanzas and heartbreak

have a nice day
i think i’ve figured out the reason you’re sad all the time.
it has something to do with your mess of a tongue, bitten through
and scarred from the times you’ve tried to hold your words inside.
stop doing that. let them out,
they’re not worth the blood in your mouth.

neither is your parents. and i’m not going to try
and tell you that they’ll understand one day
because some moms and dads never will.
but you’re always gonna have a skyline, you’re
always gonna have something to look forward to.
believe me, the world never ends.

not even on the days you want it to.
not even on the days when you’re looking
for gods in the weirdest places, like the broken
spine of the book you’ve read thirty-four times,
the front seat of your brother’s truck, the gap growing
between your niece’s front teeth, and all the other things
you find holy.

the world doesn’t end; and for that matter, neither do you.
the only thing i learned in my freshman year physics class
is that energy cannot be created and it cannot be destroyed,
and i think that’s a good way to think about yourself, because
i know it’s easy to forget that a failed class doesn’t destroy you
but at the same time, a college diploma doesn’t create you.
you are more than your accomplishments and your failures.
you are bound for greater things than a handful of  useless acronyms
and an assortment of random letters. and i’m not talking about
the sky, i’m talking beyond that, you are bound for a place we
cannot even fathom yet.

so on the days when you talk of autumn like the season of death
is all you can bring yourself to live for, take your medication.
it helps. listen to your favorite record. arguably, that helps more.
and on the days you are too sad and grounded to reread Lewis Carroll,
read this poem instead and know
that someone has written it with you in mind.
for magdalene
1. her name is not actually magdalene.
2. not all of this poem matches this girl perfectly
3. i like to think that she will not mind.
you’ve never seen a dolphin in real life,
or a bat, or a cow. your coffee is half milk,
but the way i drink my tea is sacrilegious to you.
your feet are always cold, your words always blunt.
you are not one to be poetic,
but i have a spray of freckles on my shoulders
and you tell me sometimes that it looks like
i’ve got the stars stenciled on my skin in constellations.
one looks like orion, you say, so i respond,
“the virgin’s lover,” and you say, “don’t be so judgmental,
you’re a mess of contradictions too. we all are.”

i like that line. i like how true it is, how you’re the first person
to ever tell me that i don’t have to be perfect,
or definite, or constant. how someone has finally understood that
a human being is a pile of delicately stacked miracles, a shift
of muscle under a pull of skin, a pair of lungs inhaling
a melody of ‘leave, leave, leave’ and exhaling a
plea to ‘stay, stay, stay.’ every word i speak is two-faced
and you’ll have to look in a mirror to understand
what i’m really trying to say.

i have bad days—i’m not talking
about those ‘bad days’ where i want to go
back to bed, i’m talking about those bad days
where i’m sixteen and don’t want to be anything at all.

but i have good days too, and i can’t describe
one of them to you, but i know you know what i mean,
those days that fill you up with a kind of wonder
as you look at the world and are amazed at how
big your heart must be to fit all of that in there.

so i want you to know:
my brain is a mess of knots, a tangled ball of
yarn that’s never gonna come out straight.
my morals are loose around my hands
but tight around my heart. given good music
and a strong engine, i could probably drive forever,
but i promise i will never want to walk away from you.

so here’s the red marker, here’s a couple of freckles.
tell me they’re stars, and i’ll tell you they’re bits of skin
that’ve had too much exposure to the sun on a girl who
sneaks out too much at night. maybe, eventually, we’ll both
find the beauty in that.
a deliberately puzzling paradox
the title is one of the multiple choice answers on a question on the AP English test in 1991. My English class took some of it for practice, and I got that question wrong, so....Well, before we went over it in class today, this poem was just called 'paradox' but I couldn't resist adding in the other two words, even if they might not be the perfect fit for the poem. call it an inside joke.

sorry i haven't been on in a pretty long time? my laptop broke down and i was left pretty much stranded back in the twentieth century.
you guys give me a Daily Deviation??? I love you all so so much. I mean, seriously, seriously thank you. Every single one of you is amazing and perfect and just wow okay I'm still wow'ing.

And it's more than just a DD, you know, like, I'm super touched and flattered and all these other adjectives on the response "welcome to the real world" got. I loved reading your comments about how you perceive the real world and what you were afraid of when you were graduating college/high school.

Which is another thing. I can't even begin to describe how amazing comments like, 'I just graduated high school and I think I needed to read this' or 'Just finished college, this helped me so much'. Good. Thank god, because that's what I wanted that poem to do to you. I wanted people to read it and feel, well, maybe not helped, but at least not so alone. My oldest sister graduates college in June, and today is my other sister's high school graduation and today was the last exam of my sophomore year of high school, so we're all another step into having no idea what we're going to do later and I know it scares me and it probably scares them, too.

So I'm just really glad that people read this poem and liked it, or even if they read it and hated it, or read it and messaged me all the ways that I'm an ignorant, privileged sixteen year old. This is true. But like I said earlier, I wrote "welcome to the real world" so people could read it and feel like they're aren't the only ones facing these problems. Cause sure, from what I've seen the Real World sucks and it's awful and yeah, there's little bits of 'this is great' but it's mostly twenty-somethings wishing they were preteens again. And it would doubtlessly be better if no one thought they were the only ones going through the same adjustments.

I got off all track--I just really wanted to say that after the week of exams I've had and Ending Of The Year blues, this was amazing. Thank you so much. I'm still smiling.


MisfitableGrae's Profile Picture
Grae Mattern
Artist | Literature
United States
I hate talking about myself for any length of time. My favorite part of the summer is the fireflies. My mother doesn't understand why I like the rain so much, but let's just put that on the ever-growing list of things my mother doesn't understand about me. I don't know what to do about that. I do this weird thing where I don't reply to comments and don't tell everyone that follows me that I love them but I love them and on Bad Days, I reread the comments and look at my watchers and I smile and fall a little bit more in love with humanity in general. I'm allergic to every nut but peanuts. I am a horrible human being. But some days I can convince myself that that doesn't necessarily mean I'm not a good person.

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OfOneSoul Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Hi, dear. :wave:

I just wanted you to know - I stumbled onto your piece "i don't have a dog" by accident and am SOOOO glad I did. I went to suggest it for a DD but then saw you've already gotten one in the last 6 months. I just wanted you to know how highly I thought of that piece. I read a lot of lit. on this website... and that poem was not only memorable, but touched me.

I actually recently considered the concept (of humans loving like dogs). Mainly because - I have a dog. My fiance and I disagree about him. I love him unconditionally and my fiance says he "hates" him. But then I thought to myself... you may "hate" him - but Rambo (my dog) still loves you.

I'll be watching for future amazing works from now on. Just wanted to stop by and thank you for sharing. :heart:
AcidSpades Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2014
Look, I know you're probably not going to respond but your poetry is amazing and you seem like a really awesome person. I wish I could write as well as you, and maybe even make a biography that sounds pretty damn awesome as yours. I like fireflies too, although I haven't actually seen them
Before. I guess we
Can blame owl city for that. Haha. And the rain is beautiful too. And you like supernatural.. So that gives you a bonus on why I even decided writing this weird comment.. And I really suck at endings... So, yeah. That's all. :p have a good day!
iMariposa Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for faving my journal!
jadeshade34 Featured By Owner Jul 30, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
keep up your amazing work, I hope one day you become even more famous and become a write. I love your poetry is very emotional and it tells that you are a strong person. havr a great day
Sannleikur Featured By Owner May 22, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
As I can see, you get this kind of response a lot but... I still find it oddly necessary to say something. You are an amazing artist. I'm not saying it from a technical standpoint, as I know very little of writing and especially poetry. In point of fact, I actively dislike poetry as most of it seems over done some how. I say it because while you are clearly a poet, I find myself drawn to read whats here anyway. You are someone who truly thinks as well as feels. I have the utmost respect for that, and as it is one of your qualities, you. Thank you for posting. 

p.s. If your mother really doesn't get your love of rain, than play storm tracks at night. It's incredibly soothing, and EVERYONE loves to sleep. maybe that'll clear the point up. XD
Kokorococoa Featured By Owner May 21, 2014  Student Digital Artist
iMariposa Featured By Owner May 21, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
You have an adorable smile! And your poetry is wonderful :love: :hug:
That-Red-Panda Featured By Owner May 21, 2014
Your work is simply amazing to read, you are extremely talented to be able to write the way you do, beautiful work.
locosquirrel Featured By Owner May 15, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Hi, you just sound like a great person and the words that you write cut straight to the bone and that's awesome. Yeah. That's all. :) 
ButeoLineatus Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I love your work! It is absolutely beautiful
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