How Does it Feel to Be a Seventeen Year Old Girl - Poems of Angst From a Teenage Girl

Me on my twentieth wedding anniversary, some twenty-five years after these poems were written.  All teenage girls suffer through some or all of this angst, and they end up the better for it.
Me on my twentieth wedding anniversary, some twenty-five years after these poems were written. All teenage girls suffer through some or all of this angst, and they end up the better for it. | Source

For Cheyenne

I recently had a conversation with the 17 year old daughter of a close friend who had posted on her Facebook wall a list of things that she thought were wrong with her; " I think that I am fat, I don't like my hair, I write depressing poetry, etc." Doing my best to reassure her that ALL 17 year old girls feel at least some of these, I ended the conversation with, "And you're supposed to write angst filled poetry, it is what girls your age do, I did."

Yesterday I went through my old journals from high school and pulled out some of my poems from that period in my life, the result is this hub, so Cheyenne, this hub is for you!

I Just Don't Fit In

My Seventeen Year Old Self

1985

The time has come

I must withdraw again

I've tarried to long

From my walls deep within

I've stayed too long

In this world outside

Where there are lies to be told

Where there are secrets to hide

I am not like the others

Or maybe they are not like me

I can't answer for them

But I would not want to be

Baffled am I

By the simplest things

Like the words and the tune

To the Mantra they sing

And that mask I'm to wear

It's painted smile to hide fear

The one I'm to wear

If I am to survive out here

I've been too long away

From sanctuary and quiet

The stress is starting to show

There is no way I can hide it

I must hurry my return

To to most intrinsic of places

Away from the roar

Away from the faces

Now is the moment

Now is the time

If serenity and peace

I am ever to find

It really is time

I truly musn't wait

I've already stayed too long

In this atmosphere of hate!

Me At the Age of Seventeen

Me at 17.  I hated my hair, my braces, and my toes.  I got my heart broken that year by my long-time high school boyfriend, and didn't think I would survive it.  I felt awkward, like I just didn't fit in....But I survived!
Me at 17. I hated my hair, my braces, and my toes. I got my heart broken that year by my long-time high school boyfriend, and didn't think I would survive it. I felt awkward, like I just didn't fit in....But I survived! | Source

Every Teenaged Girl Feels This Way Sometimes...

I felt that way, your mom felt that way, your own daughter will one day feel that way. It is just a fact; every teenage girl feels some or all of these things sometimes.

You are changing, Things are changing, the world around you is changing, and all of these changes can make you feel different, odd, unattractive, sad, insecure, afraid of what the future holds, but trust me, it will all work out in the end. You will survive it.

I did.

Shining Eyes

My Sixteen Year Old Self

December 1984

My shining eyes

Once innocent and bright

Now dull and listless

Have lost their light.

Once they glittered

Once they smiled

Once they mirrored the heart

Of a trusting child.

Once they believed

Once they cared

And with the world

My love they shared

The mirror of love

Hope and joy

Now the shattered ruins

Of some careless boy

Once they trusted

Once they cared

And with the world

My love they shared

Now those eyes

Once so full of life

Show only sadness,

Pain and strife.

Now a fragmented reflection

Of my gullibility

Shining out there

For all to see

Red-rimmed with hurt

Burning with pain

Fire quenched by tears

Like falling rain

That welcome light

Is no longer there

My shining eyes

Will no longer share

Never again

Will anyone see

For they are now closed

To all but me.

Stupid Girls Like Me

From my seventeen and half year old self

April 1985

Stupid girls

Just like me

Don't see the forest

For the trees.

Can't see the smoke

Until it clears,

Don't understand

What's beyond repair.

Never think

The worst will come,

Until our lives

Come all undone.

They don't know,

Neither do I

Love is just

A stupid lie,

A fairytale

Bought and sold,

Paid for with

Our hearts and souls.

Stupid girls,

Just like me

Never learn

It just can't be,

Instead we die

A thousand times

We trip and fall,

Ignore the signs,

Make the same

Old tired mistakes

Can't comprehend

That it's all fake.

Choking ourselves

On the deceit

Ashamed to admit

To our defeat,

Wishing simply

Just to die,

Seeing the hatred

In your eyes,

Accepting that

The fault is ours,

Hiding in the dark

Becoming cowards,

Becoming less

Than who we are,

Burning out

Like distant stars.

Stupid girls,

Just like me,

To stupid to know

To stupid to see,

So we deserve

This hell we get,

We're just to dumb

To know it yet.

An Ever Cherished Memory

From my eighteen year old self

April 1985

An ever cherished memory

A dream that can't come true

The way you are, the way you were

Is how I'll remember you.

A love so fragile

Our lives were bound

It wasn't ours to keep

The happiness we found.

Your smile so gentle

Your eyes told the truth

The laughter and joy

Is how I'll remember you.

The pain in ending

What we had begun

The fear of letting go

The wanting to run.

The tear we cried

The words never said

The shattered hearts

To which they led.

An ever cherished memory

A dream that can't come true

The way you are, the way you we were

Is how I'll remember you.

© 2011 Kristen Burns-Darling

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Comments 22 comments

Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 5 years ago from On the edge

Oh the broken hearts of youth ... you have captured them so well and given voice to their seemingly unbearable pain. We do bear it though, most of us and go on to live lives filled with loves we would never have expected, we blossom into the person we were meant to be and hopefully learn to love and respect ourselves and cherish even the pain that has formed us it it's own way. Your writing never ceases to amaze or please me! So beautiful!


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@Poohgranma - Thank you Sherri....I look through my old journals, especially those from my teenage years and it is always with a mixture of amusement and a pang of the remembered bittersweet pain of youth. No heart break ever hurts quite like the first one. As always my friend, thank you for the generosity of your time and comments, your friendship, and your support...They are priceless!


Poohgranma profile image

Poohgranma 5 years ago from On the edge

as are you, as are you!


chspublish profile image

chspublish 5 years ago from Ireland

Such insight from such a youthful self, yet such wisdom about life's experiences - truly remarkable writing and so endearing with clarity of expression and heartfelt truths.


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@chspublish - I don't know how insightful I was at that age, but it's fun to look back and remember just how important everything seemed then, breaking up with a boyfriend seemed like the end of the world...Thank you as always for the generosity of your time and your comments, they are always appreciated and welcome


Sylvia's Thoughts profile image

Sylvia's Thoughts 5 years ago from Southern California

These sound like me at that age and also my youngest daughter who is currently 17. How our perceptions change as we mature!


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

I remember it well...so much angst, and those the generations all believe, including mine, that we were different...some things never change. And, K, your poetry at the tender age of 17 is far beyond your years. Fantastic topic that is relevent to Cheyenne as well as those well past adolescence.


b. Malin profile image

b. Malin 5 years ago

What an Extremely Talented young Lady you were K.Burns. Even then you knew how to write from your Heart and look Deep into your Soul...I certainly could Relate to those times through your Poems. Thanks for Sharing.


Plarson profile image

Plarson 5 years ago from Alabama

KBD- Wow, eye opening hub sort to speak for me. I remember those years and being so reckless with a certain young ladies heart. But man did we trulu give our all to what we thought was to be the love of a life time. I can safely say just about 80% if not more of my poetry even to this day has some kind of reflection on the 30 months we spent together. sadly, due to how much I ultimately hurt her, she has never seen a one of them. Thank you for the trip down innocence lane. -Paul


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@Sylvia's Thoughts - Our perceptions do change so much, don't they? I have a nearly sixteen year old daughter and a seventeen year old son and when I eavesdrop on them and their friends I am always reminded of how "over-the-top" emotions ran at that age, and how fleeting the innocence...Thank you as always for the generosity of your time and your comments, they are always appreciated!


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@ Amy Becherer - It is true isn't it? Every generation thinks that they are the first to feel this way, to fall so madly in love, and then to have our hearts broken? Ahhh the innocence of youth and first loves, it is such a short-lived and precious time....Thank you so much for the generosity of your time and your comments, they are always so welcome and appreciated!


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@b. Malin - As always I am indebted to you for the generosity of your time, and the kindness of your comments. When I look back at the things I wrote in my formative years, I am sometimes struck again by a bittersweet pang of tragic angst and melodrama and the irony of how short-lived was the time that I thought would never end. Thanks again!


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@Plarson - I can relate to the girl who's heart you wounded so deeply....All of these, and at least two notebooks full more from that time, and are a sort of narration through my nearly four year on-again-off-again relationship with the same careless boy, who like you, didn't wise up until it was too late, and too much damage had been done. I don't know how we managed it, but I can say that there was a light at the end of the tunnel of ours, for once the smoke had cleared, and the tears stopped falling, he eventually became one of my closest and dearest friends. was the godfather to my middle child, and my husband and I the godparents of his daughters. Like you, I would have to admit that when I am writing about the tragedy of heartbreak, I do still feel the influence of that first heartbreak. Does anything ever cut as deeply as that first broken heart? Sadly, he passed away about a year and a half ago, and the hole that has been left in my heart is one that as of yet, is too deeply felt to express. Perhaps one day....I am glad you enjoyed the ride back in time, and I thank you for the generosity of your time and your comments, they are always welcome and appreciated!


always exploring profile image

always exploring 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

Your poetry is beautiful. I think all young girls that age can relate. I know i felt the same way back when. Thank you.


Sharyn's Slant profile image

Sharyn's Slant 5 years ago from Northeast Ohio USA

K,

I love this idea of pulling out "old" stuff and the fact that the thought came to you because of a young girl's Facebook page. You are and were very talented at a young age. Awesome!

Sharyn


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@always exploring - Thank you so much for the generosity of your time and for your comments, they are always welcome and appreciated. It's funny how when you are living through it, you think you are the only one, but with some time and perspective you see how much we all truly have in common. Thanks again!


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@Sharyn's Slant - We've been cleaning out my father's garage and I have run across a lot of my writing that I haven''t seen for years and years....it's really fun to look back and see what I thought was so earth shattering or how my perspective has changed. Thank you for the generosity of your time and your comments, they are always welcome and appreciated!


gg.zaino profile image

gg.zaino 5 years ago from L'America

K B D- Wow! Brilliant stuff from such a stupid girl... :)

Thank you for this share and outreach sister- your talent as a young lady has increased, but the intensity the same- it remains.

what a dismal place the teen years can sometimes be. your young friend should take comfort from a wonderful example such as yourself, and message of, "It will be alright..."

Peace KBD- greg


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 5 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@ gg.zaino - Awwww thanks Greg...Poetry, for the most part anyway, is different from anything else that I write in the sense that for as long as I can remember it just comes out of someplace inside of me. It has always been my release valve, the way that I dealt with whatever I couldn't or didn't want to deal with, or couldn't verbally express. I am not sure if that equals talent though or not...thank you as always for the generosity of your time and for your comments, they are always both welcomed and appreciated.

Kristen


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

Beautifuly told and here's to many more to share.

Take care

Eiddwen.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

Amazing, and very good. I think we never get too old for broken hearts. Up and sharing.


K. Burns Darling profile image

K. Burns Darling 4 years ago from Orange County, California Author

@Jackie Lynnley - Thank you so much for the gift of your time, your comments, the vote, and the share, they are all welcomed and deeply appreciated. I agree with you that we never grow to old for broken hearts, but there is just so much more angst to everything when we are young.... Thanks again

Kristen

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