For today’s Poetically Speaking post I’m taking over to talk about a poem I wrote inspired by dystopian novels.
Dystopian Love Song
One day after the world is ended
when you’re ready to start again.
Maybe we can navigate this
broken shadow life
You can even be my rising sun
if I’m not the knife at your throat first.
This is the first poem I wrote once I consciously decided to do a series of love song poems. Unsurprisingly, I got the idea for it while I was pondering Mockingjay.
This poem came to me almost in its entirety. I only had to spend time tweaking the line breaks and stanzas. I knew I wanted choppy, abrupt language which is my some of the lines are so short.
I could have changed the first line to be grammatically correct but I decided against it because 1. it’s a poem and poems can do what they want and 2. I like how it sounds with the “is ended” instead of “has ended.” I think it’s much more visceral immediate that way.
I wasn’t as concerned with mood here because I knew the mood would come across with what the poem was saying. So instead I focused on the imagery I could create. I don’t ever talk about what the world is like or say anything to imply a dystopia beyond the title in this poem. I hope I still conveyed all of that, though, with the lines I do present talking about a “broken shadow life” and the ended world.
I chose to use some punctuation here so that each stanza feels like a sentence and also to add to the choppiness of the poem and the starkness of the mood. This poem has “love song” in the title and the speaker in the poem is asking someone to call her and navigate this strange new world with them. It’s unconventional, but it could still be romantic. Except I knew I wanted an ending that was not entirely expected from the rest of the poem.
I wanted this poem to be about a mercenary, a survivor, someone who did what had to be done and didn’t worry too much about the collateral along the way. That’s where the final stanza came from and it’s still one of my favorite poem endings that I’ve written.
Note: This poem is an original work by me. If you are so inclined you can share it but please do so by crediting me (Emma Carbone not Miss Print) and linking back to this post.
Talk to me about your favorite poems or who you would want beside you at the end of the world in the comments and be sure to check back every day this April for more poetry-related posts and guest posts.