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book of honest poems #1 i stole my wife's smile

she never laughs
the full laugh
of a comfortable lover because
she came home early from work
on a lark
june sixth two thousand
and four to find me in our garage
with the door closed
passed out in the drivers seat of my
running car
you go on from this because
there is no choice
that is life
a series of unthinkable occurrences and
the thing now that
has become a morbid joke
and a true hurt in her is
that i did not leave a note
it comes back to that
so many times
why would i not leave a note
if she was my one true

19 Jun 06

Rated 8.5 (8) by 6 users.
Active (6): 6, 8, 8, 9, 10
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Your line breaks are off, but this is damn good.
 — DianaTrees

oh. this poem effectively ruined my good mood. i guess that means your poem is very good, though.
 — inutile

ohhh... ouch.  it hurt to read this.  well written.

 — jerotich

I am pretty sure  I have two brains.

One wins.

I am not going to fight now because of something in this poem.

I could cri no, yeah, Good job. Maybe I am tired.
 — pra3torian

I'm a little curious, too

I wonder how often she thinks about it
 — imahabit

thank you for reading.

 — fdostoev

This is life at it's most blunt.  I can feel this because I would be responding the same way if you left no note.  The unfinished of that would eat at anyone.  You caught it all and shame on you if you try that again!  
 — Isabelle5

I really liked this. Thanks.
 — Seeker

true hurts never go away but they can eventually be absorbed.

good poem.  sad tale.  she will laugh again i am sure.
 — unknown

Interesting reflection which captures something deeper than dark
 — larrylark

ah.. this is very good.
maybe some of the line breaks are off.

though slimmer forms usually go better with no punctuation.

very good.

 — midare

That's a terrible thing to happen to anyone, you have my sympathies.

 — unknown

get a new wife mate
 — tony

love the title. fits the poem well, which in itself has the perfect mold.
 — listen

Wow...this totally sucked me in.  It's like a bad Valentine's Day or somethin'.   And yeah...it's really effective as Inutile has commented because it ruined my day too.  That, therefore, makes it an awesome poem.  Some line breaks and punctuation are in store and will no doubt REALLY kick the reader in the ass.  I'm with your wife/girlfriend.  You could have at least left a note.  That's cold, dude (in my opinion anyway).
 — starr

More like
awful story
very bad
 — unknown

this is great other than it needs punctuation great job
 — xtormentedx

Oh, God. Tragic. This makes me feel so bad for your wife. Got me thinking. Brilliant.
 — marieF

I love this.

The title is the one I wish I had the courage to write in front of my poems (maybe I will). Whether this is your truth or someone else's, it feels honest and that is why it touches other people. Keep writing.
 — smugzy

i don't get what happened...call me young and naive but I still don't get it.
 — unknown

 — MEB

well for once i was happy and u just took away that
thanks cause i thought there was something wrong with me,
awesome poem by the way
 — Cherish

I read this through the first time without paying attention, but as I got to the end I felt something and had to reread it. To be honest, I fel in love with these words. great writing.
 — Rousseau

clever. unpleasant but very good. line 18, the instead of "a" true hurt in her?
 — bleach

I agree with the line breaks being off, but lovely poem.
 — iamgit

Amazing. I love this !! (10)

I love this.
but I would drop the 'june sixth two thousand and four'.
not only is it awkwardly divided in your line breaks,
but the date is insignificant to the reader.

but I still love this.
a lot.
 — theair

also, I'd make a new stanza between lines 10 & 11.
consider it.
 — theair


Thank you for your comments -

hamsun rings in my ears and
bukowski eats at my ankles,
i try to make it another day
in this jive and huslte.

 — fdostoev

Is the poem about Peter?
 — unknown

Oh wow. You convey an amazing amount of emotion in this, simply by describing the situation.

The line breaks and lack of punctuation feel a little forced, but as well, they seem to make the reader a little uncomfortable. At least, they did me. If this was intentional, bravo.

I get a little pang thinking about the kind of feelings that would result from the absence of something like a note. Beautiful.
 — WindingRhyme

really, really don't like the line breaks. perhaps reconsider them? make this into one long line of text, and then snap it off where most effective.
 — inutile

GREAT poem.

 — unknown

I was sold after the first three lines.
 — Krttika

What does it mean, to come home on a lark?
 — unknown

A lark is a spontaneous adventure, it is also a practical joke-
In spite of that, when I first read lines 3&4,
my brain formed an image of some woman
riding larrylark home from work,
which I haven't been quite able to shake off. ;-)

Still, this is a great poem.
 — Krttika

so, she took the magic bus then.
 — unknown

There is much to like in this poem. The line break on 3 appeals to me – it has me wandering because..what? …she came home early from work and ha ha you got caught! – then …shit. Brilliant.  L15, excellent choice.

The only suggestion I might make would be to consider the necessity of  L’s 23 & 24. L22 is a strong finish.

great work.
 — hobby

ah yes. why do so connect with this.
thank you. this is nicely writ
 — ari

The next time she asks about the note say "I'm going to the garage to take a nap."
 — monkeyofgod

Have I not rated this thing yet? It's a wonderfully emotive piece, and it's fantastic.
 — jcameron

I loved it.  Especially the last few lines...so sad
 — KaraQ

I don't understand this? Please explain?
 — unknown

how sad.  this is an amazing poem.
 — sgh0011

incredible. only great poems like these really seep into the reader and don't lose their hold. im slightly speechless, all i can say is very well-written and vivid. keep up the good work.
 — lanezfairy

this really seeps into my mind. fantastic! it is so...stabbing.
 — GreenDreams

You could use stanzas here to improve the poem.
 — Arymill

It is amazing how so many here want better format and punctuation, looking past how well enjoyable (in a lamenting sense) this piece is. It serves almost as a flash back, a kind of revelation.
Read the damn things, stop being boorish english instructors.
 — Misnomer

Unfortumately, misnomer, grammar and writing are very interrelated because.  In poetry, they are very related because the use (or misuse) can help enhance a poem or be an author's signature or many other things.  

That being said, I love this poem as is grammatically and with the line breaks.  Although it makes reading it only a tad more difficult, it creates a tone and an atmosphere to this poem that I wouldn't give up for the world.  This poem is definitely on my favorites list because I keep coming back to read it over and over again.  I keep finding more and more in it as I read it.  I love it.
 — eyesParadox

"...came home from work on a lark"
I love that line.
I'd like to see you do something to the first couple of lines to get a reader hooked faster.
over all good poetry,
nice diction,
line breaks are interesting
kept me reading once i got interested, but try and grab a reader sooner.
that's my only advice on this one
good luck
 — winsofmornin

there are good lines in here, but as someone else commented, how does the enjambment you use strengthen the poem?  the poem also falls short in showing the action, and rather seems to tell the reader what to think.
 — unknown

I really really like this!

Personally, I think the date should stay, although it is technically irrelevant for the reader, it still holds immense weight and importance for the author and this came through to me.  If this happened to me I would remember that date for the rest of my life.  

Very good.
 — HollyB

wow great stuff
 — jittery

because your one true love was your own selfish ass
 — unknown

I like this poem. It is stark, honest and ironic. It has an almost amusing lilt which of course contrasts with the morbid subject matter.
 — catherine

Good message, maybe some more thought in the punctuation and how you portrayed it. Man that sucks. Pretty good poem though.
 — Spencer51320

i am not sold on this
for some reason i cannot put
my finger on
 — jumpoline

i love the imagery, i was left baffled and cold- thank you, though it dampened my mood.
 — skxe

Well, it was okay until I got to line Nine and Ten, then whole poem fell apart.
How the hell could anyone be sitting in a running car in the garage, the car was not going anywhere, it was presumably the engine which was running.
So much, for readership, and supposedly top rated poetry.

 — Mor

honesty is the best policy.
 — Reverend

>>Well, it was okay until I got to line Nine and Ten, then whole poem fell apart.
>>How the hell could anyone be sitting in a running car in the garage, the car was >>not going anywhere, it was presumably the engine which was running.
>>So much, for readership, and supposedly top rated poetry.


We in Germany call it attempted suicide, and with that in mind this whole poem makes perfect sense. I actually didn't think it was that bad myself.
 — Maximilian

Sitting, in a “running car” especially in a garage, could indeed be suicide, the irony apparently escapes you.

 — Mor

Well, it apparently it follows you around as a tin can tied to your prehensile stump.
But there again the irony escapes you, may be it is your low attention span.

Or, may be your motor, is just not running at all.

 — Mor

my motor works.

yours according to pat, your ex, was a 2 cylinder moped engine masquerading as a maybach.

jiffylube it
 — unknown

Mine was a Triumph Tiger 100C I also had an AJS 7R and one of the first BSA Gold Stars ever to Race in The Isle of Man Clubman TT. I also had a Hogan Bantam I loved that little junk pile, it was a buzz bomb if ever there was one.

 — Mor

lines 1,4,23 -- "she"
line 7 -- "me"
lines 9,23 -- "my"  
line 18 -- "her"
line 19,22 -- "i"
line 11 -- "you"??????
any chance of changing to
"one goes on..."?

nice poem
 — chuckles

 — topop

Oh dear, this hit a soft place, for sure. It feels like reading a novel though, and not seeing a picture. Good work on line breaks though; I love the title.
 — bbucsis

This is very authentic. Very real. My friend's mom did this and he cried all night. Later that year he took 32 tylenols. Then he met me in a mental hospital.
 — Bandrews

... that is an awful feeling poem. amazing.
 — unknown

This is beautiful. I disagree about the line breaks. It doesn't exactly "flow," but it moves well. Nice.
 — unknown

it made me cry.
 — OKcomputer

I read this months ago and have remembered it often since.
 — unknown

I loved the essence of this.  The honesty of it.  How could you leave a note?  There would be too much to say that couldn't be said.  
 — unknown

It took my breath away, well done.
 — BrokenJoke

i hate this poem. but it is exceptional.
 — unknown

You didn't leave a note 'cause you didn't really want to take a dirt nap.
But, some of em don't leave notes.  My brother didn't, he just jumped.
 — unknown

Movie of the week on the Home Shopping Newwork. Trixie the poodle pees on the rug and Pops leaves a note for the cleaning lady.
 — unknown

awe, no! Not good.
 — unknown

I love it, but i cant really put my finger on what i like
 — unknown

I have always thought this to be one of the best poems here.
 — violet

 — photobooth

second reading - no opinion yet
 — greenmantle

have I really never commented this? I think it's because I've never been able to pinpoint or put into words exactly why this affects me so much, but it does. I guess I'm still not able to. just beautiful.
 — EchoesRemain

vivid imagery????? unique look at a tired subject? this is very average.
 — unknown

"I'm going to the garage to take a nap" caused me to spit my coffee at my computer and now I feel guilty for laughing. thanks.
 — amaviena

 — seekinglight

thanks for reading.

 — unknown

So simple. So effective. So subtle and smooth and heartbreaking.

Beautiful. No suggestions.
 — musicwords

i wouldn't call this an honest poem because i think that there are two dimensions here, a complicated poem of two personalities in balance, and they aren't reconcilied. the author has simply commented on the other to his own advantage. i know that saying smart and ironic things is supposed to be part of "poetry", but that's a poetry for children, where you're supposed to say things against whatever you don't understand... you're not expected to know anything. in this, because some grownup words are used it's expected by me at least that this will be a recreation of the relationship, showing its life or death as some reality outiside of the author's "comfort". it really doesn't... it's just consumer talk about a "wife unit", and not even getting into her space enough to make her real for me... it's like i'm supposed to already agree with the author on certain basic premisses... not biologic but simply social: "women are like that". they aren't.

there's no such thing as a "message poem" -- simply "messages... post it notes. graffitti.
 — joey

really good
 — steveroggenb

every week in english we have to pick a poem and write a paper on it.. last week i chose this one :o)
 — iamswanson

wow, I've never read this.
how unbelievably heartwrenching,
ugh, I hate you!  (not you, justin),
Damn, this really is good.
ugh, you can relate this to so many things.

 — jenakajoffer


The only suggestion I might offer would be that perhaps your format might benefit were there two separate sections; line 1-10, and 11 to the end.

Good Luck.  
 — unknown

Ditto the previous comments.  Excellent central idea, maybe a bit off in the execution of line breaks & punctuation.  
 — brainhaven

This is truly an honest poem... Honesty has a way of cutting right to a persons heart, which is exactally where it touched me.  This is Beautiful!
 — ninabaladina

I adore the sentiment here.
The last few lines hit you like a run-away train.
Anincredible poem that has a ring of truth about it and implications of the lament within human nature.
 — Samaross

oh my.
it's alive.
 — gnormal

this is really well written. i love the flow of the poem
 — Renai

I have nothing to say except that this really got to me. Really great and a terrible thing. It must have been hard to put it into words.
 — Rynne

very nice
 — pahs

there is a difference but the relationship is evident.
 — unknown

wow. theyre both great.
i like this better.
for me denser better.

in the other, you make it sound like a possible misinterpretation.
thats interesting, but the poem doesnt take that anywhere.
rather its point scatters and dispurses too quickly than i can follow into war and religion.
and perhaps naming a key impetus.
but it's too perhaps.

i really think there is a hybrid that is better than both
that carries both points-
the lovetorture of fetus and wife.

definitely not one i would attempt to rewrite!
but hope you do.
 — gnormal

 — shizzay

10-faved finally.
: )
 — fractalcore

-- whoa you've captured our human frailties and fears in this piece with images that are gut wrenching -- we fall, we get up, some don't -- your voice is even and without judgement it goes on to describe the moments in contrasts that the words edge out themselves -- then the human personalities and how can they not take it personally -- eyes are wide open seeing all the world and sensitive to every innuendo: the boon and bane of the Poet -- well writ with pathos in it
 — AlchemiA

 — advisingaway

i have read this a couple times and apparently did not understand --

because i read it again just now and it crashed into me.

this is aching and gorgeous.
 — chat-noir

 — unknown

This is sweeeeeeeeeeeeet-- Not the cutie cutie type but as in one of the coolest poems on this site.
You know you can say sorry bro--just playing man.
 — basketballj

 — quietus

this is honest because it doesn't over elaborate and doesn't use fancy words when good, solid honest words are more apt-
the sort of poems i usually like reading- hit the nail on the head. very good
 — mr_e

The title is apt because this poem is honesty in its truest form.  I agree with others about some of the line breaks, but that's just a minor annoyance.  This is a damn good poem.
 — PaulS

It took me awhile to see past "Office Space", and then I realized how much I like this. It sort of gouges into the mind of the guy, very well too. Thanks for this.
 — mindbodysoul

In L3, the “because” is clearly implied in what follows.
I’d like to know more about the lark. A specific would add give some needed dimension to the wife.
Second because, same as the first.
“that is life” comes across as didactic, maybe even a little flippant. And unthinkable is not a good or truthful adjective. Of course it’s thinkable. Even some who’d never do it think of it. This kind of story needs honesty, to be laid bare.
L16 is a waste of space.
This may be a story worth telling, but it’s not particularly poetic. It looks like a poem at first glance, but I find no irony, simile, metaphor, or rhythm---no music---no interesting syntax, nothing that goes towards the making of poetry.
 — unknown

Nice story.  I love this.
 — Inspire

this is so honest and sad
it made me cry.
 — JL

Suicidal thoughts are unhealthy and it's creeping up again because of this.
 — majan

you forgot to add

your one true love is yourself

suicide is selfish for most people and can be remediated
 — unknown

the line breaks are a bit jagged, but this is some powserful stuff.
 — nemissk8

My cousin slit her wrists in a bath and passed out - her husband came home that day at lunch - unusual - and found her, saved her. It was not time for her, or you, to leave. They are well now - as well as any couple who struggle in their own private ways to get through the darkness.
The open lines are perfect. I like the idea of regatherings. And the note is so very much more than a note. Well done.
 — Cocoa

I'm so glad to see this at the top again, where is does need to be.  
 — Isabelle5

This poem has the potential of being excellent... Pardon me as I nitpic:

I think there should be a line break after line 10 and again after 15... also, some of your lines are phrased awkwardly: "that is life" and "the thing now that".
Also, I think in general the lines are too choppy, maybe work on flow?

But as for most of the content itself, it is very strong...
 — andyleggett

re-visited. still a winner. good work.
 — SarahMichele

love it
 — Flux

Read it again and it is still like a punch in the stomach. So good.
 — Rynne

Good read
 — BxPR

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Jesus Approved
 — JesusInDrag

This is the note.
 — mould_jesus