What is missing?

It wasn’t until I completed my book that I realized so much of the love story isn’t within its pages.

In writing workshops I mention there are silences we must allow for with poetry. Silence is necessary for a number of reasons: we don’t have the whole story, we are censored, the subject matter is difficult, we are struck by speechlessness, we need a moment, or the act within is profound.

Silences are one way to allow a place for incomplete stories. For me, the idea that a relationship can only truly be understood by those within the relationship meant I had to incorporate silences. They signified moments of distress or joy or learning in the course of a day. They also meant moments of intimacy.

And throughout, the poem that sits in front of the reader, through language and rhythm, alludes to the understanding that these characters are growing and learning. Much like writers, who come to the page with experiences that change us, whether they ever actually show up on the page or not.


Author: jo reyes-boitel

poet, playwright, and essayist. queer Latinx. current MFA student.

2 thoughts on “What is missing?”

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