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Poetry

Signs of Life: Poems for Remembering

By Meg Bloom

Worth reading 😎

An honest and raw collection reminiscent of Kaur and Lovelace; following a journey from Trauma to Hope.

Synopsis

A debut book of poetry to feed the soul

Meg Bloom's first book of poetry, Signs of Life, explores the feelings and experiences that make us alive: trauma, grief, loss, love, learning and hope. It offers moments to reflect on both the pain and joy that fill our lives, and what we can learn from them.

Bloom’s debut collection is immediately reminiscent of Kaur and Lovelace as she combines pithy thoughts with extended pieces which demonstrate Bloom’s talent for creating raw and honest imagery.


At times, this similarity let the collection down. My issue with the work of Kaur and Lovelace is how often the words read as discarded thoughts instead of poetry consciously crafted to evoke emotions within its readers. I often wish the four line poems in this collection, and others, were fleshed out - explored further - because instead I am left uncomfortably wanting.


Yet, Bloom illustrates a gorgeous talent for words in many of the pieces in Signs of Life. I loved the idea of the narrative journey - from Trauma to Hope. A journey one could experience in the short space of a year, or across a lifetime. The strongest chapters were Trauma, Grief, Loss and Hope.


Bloom drew metaphorical blood in nice boys


In fact I wish I felt as guilty
because resentment at my own
paralysis
stings
burns
from the place you invaded me
to the back of my throat


and tugs on heartstrings in for your children.


She reminds us all of our past heartaches in tears:


on the night you left
the ocean
licked
your footprints clean
from the sand
and I thought of you
as your sandcastles
faded
from shore
like lost ghosts


and to my unborn daughter is a beautiful reminder of the fears and hopes which accompany creation.


Thus, despite lacking originality in places, Bloom is clearly finding her voice, and I look forward to watching her blossom.

Reviewed by

I've been running my own blog for just over two years now, as well as editing the blog Free Verse Revolution which showcases the work of writers from all over the globe. I'm an avid reader and work as a freelance editor for indie publishers. I'm also an English teacher.

Synopsis

A debut book of poetry to feed the soul

Meg Bloom's first book of poetry, Signs of Life, explores the feelings and experiences that make us alive: trauma, grief, loss, love, learning and hope. It offers moments to reflect on both the pain and joy that fill our lives, and what we can learn from them.

Trauma

silk red

is the river between us

a dark pool

brimming with crimson splendour

atop the ash and dust


life wilds softly

kindly

just moments after

the violence ensued

in the pale light of the morning


your sudden absence

an unfamiliar void

I cannot fill


your white, soul-less gaze

cold and inescapable


where does life and death begin

along this river of culpability

where love turns to pain

in its merciless end



– silk river







please don’t cry

too much

I haven’t cleaned the gutters

and I don’t want

to cause a flood



– repression







I’m afraid

of opening the box

the ribbons

are deceptively colourful

but I know

the darkness inside

is endless

and will crush me

ruthlessly

under its power



– pandora







sometimes I lose the present

like a lace curtain

has fallen

between me and the world


I am neither here

nor gone

but somewhere in between

where the damp air fuels the rot


extracted

through a cold vacuum

from the last

vestiges of my body


like a lost ship

drifting in exile

calling out to life

in the distance



– dissociation







words

are the hardest

to say

time has stolen

and frozen them

in my throat

like cement

hardening

in a mine shaft



– frozen







find me

in the space between

the light

and the dark

in the crevices

where lonely hearts hibernate

to survive


this taut body

a soft cloak of armour

to repel all wondering eyes and

wondering hands

that follow me through

the days

and the nightmares


self-destructive

preservation

the only thing more bearable

than the truth

spoken from the crib:

that which is unspeakable

in this life



– the body keeper







the truth is, I love to lose

the pain is familiar

like cutting myself

when no one is watching



– counting losses







tell me

how you feel

let me comfort you

carry you

tell you everything

will be ok

lean on me

when the world

is too much

when the stress

and the pain

cripples you

depend on me

to lift you out of bed

to dress you

nourish you

push you

trust me

to always be there

to keep you

from falling apart

expect me

need me

use me

then watch me break

underneath you



– burdens







I wish I could get angry

like you

so unfiltered

and alive


it must be good

to feel things

in your own body



– filtered







I think I heard you say

that was nice

though I’m not sure who you were trying to convince.

maybe what you meant was

sorry

I thought you were just here for me to do what I want with

or

excuse me, I hope you don’t mind if I just rip you open

stuff myself inside you and sew you back together again

with

that was nice

as you glanced back

with a pang of guilt

swiftly buried for the sake of your own

conscience –

I’m sure

that was nice.

In fact I wish I felt as guilty

because resentment at my own

paralysis

stings

burns

from the place you invaded me

to the back of my throat

where I have to carry you around

inside of me

long after you picked up

your clothes

and left.



– nice boys







I can still feel you

inside of me

I never wanted you there



– scar







I see you

looming

in the crevices

stroking the follicles

on the back of my neck

with your breath


an absent face

in an ethereal dream

picks me apart

piece by piece

and defeat

grips me


the exits have faded

and we are alone

eclipsed by your shadow

I drown

in your hunger

tonight, I will let you take me



– depression







don’t look at me like that

so shrill

and discerning

you’re not allowed to see

what I hide

in the cupboard



– secrets







your bones

are just

a frail cocoon


for

a slowing heart

losing rhythm


calling out for

my

touch


but

brittle

between my fingertips


unsung secrets

drip

drip

from your lips



– bones







eating is overrated

she said


no matter how much

or little

I feed my body

it is still ugly


so I might as well stop

altogether


and yet

only love can feed beauty



– hunger







I’m so tired

of being your sponge

soaking up

all the feelings

you spill out onto the table



– sponge







no matter how much

you reject me

in the end

I’m always there for you


what would I know?

I’m just

someone with an opinion



– contempt







I must be your mirror

you hate everything about yourself

and you see it

in me



– conflict

About the author

Meg Bloom lives in Melbourne, Australia. She writes poetry to reflect on life's journey, drawing from her own experiences and those close to her. She enjoys getting lost in books, music and nature. Find her on Instagram at @megbloompoetry. view profile

Published on October 01, 2019

Published by Bloom House Press

3000 words

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Poetry

Reviewed by

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