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teenage dystopia

The sky is gray and the grass is dead;
cold, empty, desolate;
Pope Gregory says its July;
The sun should be out,
yet every day is the same;
cold, empty, desolate

They say I have years and years to live,
though the thought of one more day
is enough to make me cry;
Your golden years, they say;
if this is gold,
then please, dear Lord, I won't
I won't stand for another day of this;
Golden years!? I guess so;
If you're pretty,
and funny,
and popular,
then sure.
but a life of solitude,
a life of pain,
the feeling of worthlessness,
of ugliness,
of loneliness,
of pain,
of worthlessness,
is unlivable;

O Lord, if you're out there,
why do you hate me so much?
this life you gave me is simply unlivable.
just take me out of it.

Review Request (Intensity): 
I appreciate moderate constructive criticism
Last few words: 
this is my first work, just spent like 30 minutes writing whatever comes to mind
Editing stage: 
Content level: 
Not Explicit Content


I seldom do "moderate constructive criticism". This is a poetry workshop, where people such as youself connect with people like me for honest criticism of their work. "Moderate contructive criticism" does not lend itself to poetic or literary improvement: you have to leave your emotions and your ego at the virtual door, and be able to read dispassionately of things you don't necessarily want to hear about how you write your poetry.
Having said that, I'm breaking my own rule because you state in the "Last Few Words" section that you only took 30 minutes to pump this out. That means you have something to say, and the skills - as unpolished as they are - to say it in a manner that will catch people's hearts, and drill into their minds. Now, you just have to figure out how to say it with power, with cadence and fluidity, so that you create a totality of poetry that is greater than the sum of the mere words.
So let's start.

There is little wrong with the first verse. You set the stage nicely, the cadence flows well, and you identify your religious belief with the reference to Gregory. I like it. The only criticism is the word "and". it's not needed, put a comma in its place, and you'll see what I mean.

The second verse is far too long. Poetry is not just about rhyme, rhythm and cadence. The structure of the poem, how the words and sentences are put together, can have a great impact on the reader. Again, you are using the word "and" unnecessarily.

"They say I have years and years to live,"

you can change the wording without changing the meaning:

"They say I have so many years to live,"

This makes the line flow a lot better. In the original, "years and years" makes the line sound choppy and repetitive.

Having said that, sometimes repitition is a good thing, particularly when trying to emphasis an emotion:

then please, dear Lord, I won't
I won't stand for another day of this;"

put a comma after the first "I won't" and you'll see what I mean.

Verse two should also be cut into at least two verses, and probably three. The end of it just becomes a rather repetitive laundry list of woes, some repeated. I'm not saying that they should not be there. What I am saying is that you have to think about your audience, those who are reading your work. Lists like this quickly lose a reader's interest, and that's not something you want to have happen, particularly in a poem like this: you want to grab their emotions and their attention, keeping it sharp and focused until the very end. So, find other ways to write about the unhappiness, after the line
"I won't stand for another day of this;"

The last verse is pretty good. It focuses the reader's attention of your religious beliefs again, especially the "Amen", which makes the poem distinctly judeo-christian, and it wraps the whole message of the poem in a bit of defiance, which, trust me, most of us who believe in god have had at one point or another. In other words, you get the reader to identify with you, the poet, and this is important. And oh, yes, try to use "cold, empty, desolate" in the last verse too. It will have greater impact on the reader.

So that's it, my criticism of your poem. I hope I haven't pissed you off...but if I did, use your anger in your re-write of your poem; I think it would be a great addition to it.

And please keep writing, because Paractise makes Perfect, and your first effort shows me a great deal of potential.

Respectfully, Race

"Laws and Rules don't kill freedom: narrow-minded intolerance does" - Race-9togo

Thanks Race_9tgo
As a new member (not the author of the poem) I found your constructive criticism of this poem encouraging. It has helped me to be perhaps more open (in a constructive way) when making comments about other people's work.

Welcome to Neopoet.
Criticism is what we are about, at Neopoet. The idea is to make people who want to write poetry, write better poetry, if you see what I mean.
I myself was hesitant at first to listen to what others had to say about my work. But when I stopped and really read what they were saying, I realized it would make my writing better.
And so it has.
It's encouraging, to see a new member opening up to the possibilities of improving their poerty.
Now, I'll have to take a look at your poems!

Respectfully, Race

"Laws and Rules don't kill freedom: narrow-minded intolerance does" - Race-9togo

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