You Said It

Someday Our Youth Will Be Behind Us

Our inaugural edition of reader poetry.

Kirby Knowlton



on rifling through the drawers of my neighbor, who is gone for the weekend

i remember rainier days than the ones
we get now spent in her backyard,
grinding clovers to tint rocks green,

watching chalk dust rivers find
shelter between cracked brick.
jealousy was a monster i didn’t yet

know how to name, but even the
way she could peel bread crust off
in one piece reminded me of a

caterpillar’s patient wait to transform
& i was a chick pecking with a beak
still only halfway firm, eggshell

littering the ground like the snow
we wouldn’t see for years. we had
always said that when it came down

we would help melt it together, as
if our exhalations of breath alone
could have risen mercury, but we

never tested the theory. maybe i
meddle now instead of asking what
happened, dig through revlon tubes

to unearth the lipsmackers i once wanted.
it’s not my job to be the archaeologist
who tracks the progression of her bra

size, to unfold notes from her gym class,
but fossils are easier to handle than
words & i’m running out of time.



gone to seed

the summer it stopped raining,
we ate things we weren’t supposed to.
as the grass began to die in patches,
we turned to pica like a last prayer.

we tried so hard to be different,
knew the taste of acorns, pencil
shavings, friendship’s fading days.

when you got sick with cicada
shell i held your hair back in the
yard, knowing that you would
pretend it never happened.

one night i touched to your lips a
watermelon seed, an almost kiss to
pocket for days when you were most
afraid of growing a garden belly.

when the rain finally came, i hoped the
fruit in your stomach would grow to be
one we couldn’t name, something new
to wet our grasses again, to keep what
roots remained alive.

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34 Comments

  • whatever April 19th, 2013 3:12 PM

    what a great collection! i’m going to print out some of these and stick them on my wall ♡♡
    “rather” on page 11 made me laugh

    ♡♡♡♡
    http://teenmoonwitch.blogspot.co.uk/

  • Ree April 19th, 2013 3:23 PM

    Gosh, Rookie readers are the best, this is brilliant in every way :-)

  • dreamygirl April 19th, 2013 4:09 PM

    “There is a 13-year-old girl,
    tall for her age, gangly.”
    This is a perfect description of me. Perhaps the exact definition of my appearance.

  • FlowerandtheVine April 19th, 2013 4:30 PM

    This is really a tremendous collection. It’s amazing how people can feel so many of the same emotions, while going through completely different situations!

    http://flowerandthevine.wordpress.com

  • indigosunday April 19th, 2013 4:49 PM

    Such a great poetry collection

  • KatGirl April 19th, 2013 5:50 PM

    Summer Nights T_T

  • paige.xo April 19th, 2013 6:14 PM

    perf

  • Jasmine April 19th, 2013 6:39 PM

    very lovely to see so much talent c:
    it definitely inspires me

  • Bianca April 19th, 2013 6:52 PM

    Aw Rookie has such talented readers! Their words and hearts on page move me greatly…nice job everyone <3

    PS – I also followed the links left in comments above by readers to their blogs…also very cool.

  • Maddie April 19th, 2013 7:21 PM

    This is such a beautiful collection of poems! I love that Rookie publishes reader work… thank you!

  • Miss Pink April 19th, 2013 8:28 PM

    LOVE this collection!! Such talented poets! <3

    http://mostlikelytowearpink.tumblr.com/

  • TessAnnesley April 19th, 2013 9:26 PM

    looooooooooooord i love all of you

  • rockwrenroll April 19th, 2013 9:36 PM

    I just watched Dead Poets Society, so I’ve been on a bit of a poetry kick lately. These are wonderful.

  • AnaRuiz April 19th, 2013 9:39 PM

    Things like this help me understand what Mary Poppins referred to with “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.”

    http://anaruizwriting.blogspot.com

  • wishfulwanderer April 20th, 2013 12:54 AM

    These are so great! I am kind of disappointed though that I didn’t submit my poetry… will there be another edition of reader poetry?

  • Tara A. April 20th, 2013 1:00 AM

    Rookie readers are amaaaazing and so talented! This collection is the best!

    http://www.unlockingpandorasbox.blogspot.com

  • Tangerine April 20th, 2013 2:01 AM

    This is so so great

  • Cactus Woman April 20th, 2013 4:35 AM

    I have been waiting for something like this for SO LONG. You’ve no idea. Can’t wait to submit to a future one!

    ~*~**THANK YOU!**~*~

  • diniada13 April 20th, 2013 6:30 AM

    Love these!!! But if I want to submit poetry should it match the monthly theme?

    • Anaheed April 20th, 2013 6:34 AM

      No, it doesn’t have to.

  • Alex S. April 20th, 2013 10:51 PM

    I can almost feel the words behind these poems, is that weird? It might be but these are beautiful, can’t wait to see this revisited in the future.

  • cornly_ April 21st, 2013 9:05 AM

    BEST THING EVER

  • cornly_ April 21st, 2013 9:12 AM

    P.s Childhood Playmates made me kind of tear up, it was just beautiful.

    • chestnutsumo85 April 21st, 2013 3:22 PM

      thank you so much! – Sophie

  • Ella W April 21st, 2013 1:26 PM

    I wish this was a monthly piece on Rookie!

    http://gorillalegs.blogspot.co.uk/

  • Maddy April 21st, 2013 10:26 PM

    IS STEVE HAPPY?! More poetry! :D

  • abby111039 April 22nd, 2013 8:06 PM

    I wish I had read these sooner. What a lovely collection of poems.

  • April 23rd, 2013 1:25 PM

    This was just beautiful.

  • HaverchuckForPresident April 27th, 2013 4:47 PM

    I really love these. The fact that they are from this community with people around my own age thinking and going through similar things as me makes them super-relatable. I especially like Keep Open, Consumable Yourh Rebellion and Divorce is a Dirty Word :) :) :)

  • pubertyblues April 28th, 2013 11:44 PM

    every single one of these made me cry

  • Rini July 29th, 2013 11:13 PM

    So fresh:)