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Afterwards is a book about the things that come after trauma. It encompasses the different kinds of grief-- primarily the loss of a friend to suicide, but also the loss of an important relationship, and dealing with some loss related to family. There are frank discussions of mental illness and the spectrum of emotions that come with moving forward.


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Afterwards is a book about the things that come after trauma. It encompasses the different kinds of grief-- primarily the loss of a friend to suicide, but also the loss of an important relationship, and dealing with some loss related to family. There are frank discussions of mental illness and the spectrum of emotions that come with moving forward.

30 review for Afterwards: Poems

  1. 5 out of 5

    sahar

    "there has never been a storm that lasted forever. there has never been so much destruction that you cannot be rebuilt." "there has never been a storm that lasted forever. there has never been so much destruction that you cannot be rebuilt."

  2. 5 out of 5

    Sanexiah

    I thought that it was well-written and the texts resonated with me!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Anwen Hayward

    (Review of an ARC received via Netgalley) One day, Button Poetry will release a collection that doesn't become one of my new favourites, but today is not that day. Afterwards is a really beautiful and often difficult window into complex grief. Myers' writing is full of lines that practically beg to be underlined and highlighted and read aloud. As someone who, like Myers, has experienced multiple bereavements in a short space of time, I liked the messy nature of this book; it's not always clear wh (Review of an ARC received via Netgalley) One day, Button Poetry will release a collection that doesn't become one of my new favourites, but today is not that day. Afterwards is a really beautiful and often difficult window into complex grief. Myers' writing is full of lines that practically beg to be underlined and highlighted and read aloud. As someone who, like Myers, has experienced multiple bereavements in a short space of time, I liked the messy nature of this book; it's not always clear whether she's writing about a break-up or, when it's clearly a bereavement, who she's mourning. That's just how grief works. It gets tangled up in itself. I'm glad that this book wasn't separated into sections which isolated each subject. It's necessarily muddled. There were a few poems which didn't stand out particularly strongly to me, mostly the ones about womanhood and body image, which I think is purely because those are very common subjects in this style of poetry. The poems in here about grief and mental illness were by far the strongest. My favourite poems in here were probably the erasure poems, where Myers takes existing texts (such as wedding vows and song lyrics) and reworks them into something completely different. I found those to be such great metaphors for grief; what is grief if not making the best of things? I'm continually grateful to Button for publishing these short books of slam poetry from an enormous range of voices. I do think that, purely by the nature of the genre, some of the voices tend to bleed into one a little, but as a corpus of work, they continue to be excellent.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Charlie Medcalf

    Afterwards by Reagan Myers is a collection of excellent poems all about depression and grief and some dark things which can happen such as suicide, loss of family members and loss of important relationships. This collection of poetry is about things that we may all experience at some point and really makes the reader feel sympathy for the poet and understand the poet's journey and what she has been through. The joy of poetry is that poems do not have to follow any rules and it is a way for the Afterwards by Reagan Myers is a collection of excellent poems all about depression and grief and some dark things which can happen such as suicide, loss of family members and loss of important relationships. This collection of poetry is about things that we may all experience at some point and really makes the reader feel sympathy for the poet and understand the poet's journey and what she has been through. The joy of poetry is that poems do not have to follow any rules and it is a way for the writer to write about their true and honest feelings and this is very evident in this fine collection of poetry. I would however advise possibly not reading this collection of poems if you are suffering from extreme depression. Please follow the link below to see my full review- https://cembookportal.blogspot.com/20...

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tamara

    3.75 stars I received an arc from netgalley in exchange for a honest review. There were some poems I really liked and some that just didn't resonated with me. One I really liked was 'depression is funny like that'. I did enjoy this and I'm looking forward to her future work. 3.75 stars I received an arc from netgalley in exchange for a honest review. There were some poems I really liked and some that just didn't resonated with me. One I really liked was 'depression is funny like that'. I did enjoy this and I'm looking forward to her future work.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Iaru

    I like how different poetry can be. En especial cuando trata sobre la depresion. Y cuando una escritora se abre. I like this book because it doesn´t have that malegaze of seeing things.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Gwendolyn Wood

    Thanks to NetGalley for this advance copy. It’s been awhile since I’ve read poetry that moved really moved me but this collection is about loss and grief, it’s about how mundane life can seem grappling with such heavy topics. Many of the poems really struck a cord with me and I found them quite touching and deeply thoughtful. I didn’t care for the few more political poems but that’s just preference after the last few crazy years and not due to writing as even they were written quite well. If you h Thanks to NetGalley for this advance copy. It’s been awhile since I’ve read poetry that moved really moved me but this collection is about loss and grief, it’s about how mundane life can seem grappling with such heavy topics. Many of the poems really struck a cord with me and I found them quite touching and deeply thoughtful. I didn’t care for the few more political poems but that’s just preference after the last few crazy years and not due to writing as even they were written quite well. If you have ever experienced loss or want some insight to someone who has this book is absolutely a treasure. Read it to your heart’s content.

  8. 5 out of 5

    TW: Free Period Reviews

    I received an advance reader copy of this book to read in exchange for an honest review via netgalley and the publishers; all opinions are my own. Trauma, depression and agony are a few of the most difficult subjects to confront in writing intended to be shared with an audience. Reagan Myers does just that with honesty, vulnerability and hope. Rather than getting bogged down in the heartache that haunts her experiences and poems, Myers discovers ways to integrate the possibility of moving through I received an advance reader copy of this book to read in exchange for an honest review via netgalley and the publishers; all opinions are my own. Trauma, depression and agony are a few of the most difficult subjects to confront in writing intended to be shared with an audience. Reagan Myers does just that with honesty, vulnerability and hope. Rather than getting bogged down in the heartache that haunts her experiences and poems, Myers discovers ways to integrate the possibility of moving through and alongside her pain while tackling such serious subjects as objectification, suicide, destructive relationships and body image. There are many writers who make the claim that poetry saved their lives; Reagan Myers seems to save her own in the way she mixes subtle humor and light with the shadows of the past. Though the content may be triggering for some readers, the depth of the work makes it a good read for anyone attempting to navigate grief and survival in the face of these kinds of obstacles. Readers will find strength in Myers’ stories, imagery and figurative language. Though I have already read the book, I intend to purchase it so I can save and savor it for years to come. What stands out the most in Reagan Myers’ writing is that she is unafraid of sharing the complexity of each topic she wrestles with. In “Still”, focused on an unhealthy relationship, she admits “Leaving him was like watching my heart escape my own chest/and finding it in my own hands”. How true this line is and how simply it addresses the nature of leaving something that one both loves and is poison to them. “In My Favorite Memory of Her” confronts the loss of a best friend through a vivid memory of a brief encounter, yet includes “I think that the good memories will hurt, too”. Reflecting on a grandmother who doesn’t recall her age, Myers writes, “Maybe she is a fortune teller/keeping me alive”. These lines express an understanding of hope like grasping at straws before one runs out of them and effectively capture the depth of emotion attached. Though many poems center on grief, depression and death, they are also love letters to survival in all its forms. Teachable Moments: This isn’t a text that I would teach as a whole in my high school classes due to the gravity of some of the subjects and potential for reactions from teens trying to figure out their paths to healing if they, too, have suffered in similar ways. However, Reagan Myers’ confessional style choices are worthy of sharing with teenagers. Like Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton, Myers shares her quivering underbelly honestly without makeup to cover her scars and in a voice that feels relatable and conversational. This collection is not the place to find examples of fine tuned allusions or interesting punctuation, but she examines tragedy through interesting lenses (“Paleontology”, “Just like the Movies”, “Chemistry”), metaphors (“The Girl Becomes Gasoline” & “There is a Moment Before the Storm Strikes”) and personification (“On Sorrow”, “On Joy”, “When Death Comes”) as a means to process and interrogate personal experience. While it is easy to want to protect students from pain such as is tackled here, there are quite a number of poems that can open their eyes to the healing properties of confession through writing which any teenager is likely to appreciate, connect with and learn from.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Michelle McGrane

    Regan Myers is one of Button Poetry’s most-viewed performance poets. Her poems ‘Depression is Funny Like That’ and ‘The Girl Becomes Gasoline’ have had over three million combined views, and ‘Depression Is Funny Like That’ remains one of the top 15 videos on Button Poetry’s channel. ‘Afterwards’, Myers’ debut collection, explores themes of mental health, suicide, death, love and family; I expect it to be no less popular than her public performances. Unafraid to address the power of depression, it Regan Myers is one of Button Poetry’s most-viewed performance poets. Her poems ‘Depression is Funny Like That’ and ‘The Girl Becomes Gasoline’ have had over three million combined views, and ‘Depression Is Funny Like That’ remains one of the top 15 videos on Button Poetry’s channel. ‘Afterwards’, Myers’ debut collection, explores themes of mental health, suicide, death, love and family; I expect it to be no less popular than her public performances. Unafraid to address the power of depression, it is a documentation of daily struggle and a gift for anyone who has grappled to find words to express themselves. Readers who suffer from depression will find solace through Myer’s words. These are poems which are both intensely personal and universal. ‘Afterwards’ bears witness to what it means to survive the unbearable. It is a brave book, and what the poet has had to live through, in order to write this book, has taken courage. It’s a book is for us all: survivors who need to find solace when there is none, those who want to comfort the grief stricken yet don’t know how, and everyone who needs to find a flicker of hope in the company of grief. Hypothesis There is no map for moving on. Moving on implies forward, and in this case, to move on I must first go back. The data set is not complete, so to speak— there is no more relationship to be had, only to be analyzed. Does moving on require a hypothesis? Safety goggles? Carefully placed labels? It certainly requires a summary of findings; something to be revisited down the road, when none of this makes sense all over again. Reagan Myers is the youngest Grand Slam champion to ever come out of Nebraska, and was the first woman to hold the title in seven years. She is currently working on her Masters degree in composition and rhetoric at the University of Nebraska. A huge thank you to @NetGalley and @buttonpoetry for a DRC of ‘Afterwards: Poems’ by Reagan Myers.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Marie

    “Afterwards” focuses primarily on matters such as loss and trauma in the form of free verse poetry. Upon thoroughly reviewing this collection, one could describe it as thought-provoking, raw, and intelligent. The author understands grief well, that much is certain, and as such I fully believe anyone that has either currently or previously experienced loss in its sincerest form will resonate deeply with this work. The collection utilizes clever and profound literary devices throughout its entiret “Afterwards” focuses primarily on matters such as loss and trauma in the form of free verse poetry. Upon thoroughly reviewing this collection, one could describe it as thought-provoking, raw, and intelligent. The author understands grief well, that much is certain, and as such I fully believe anyone that has either currently or previously experienced loss in its sincerest form will resonate deeply with this work. The collection utilizes clever and profound literary devices throughout its entirety. I was impressed with the amount of imagery that the author presented throughout their manuscript, along with the ingenuity behind it all. The collection boasts a great amount of original thought in the face of one of life’s biggest tragedies; however, certain poems within the collection felt far too abstract for its audience to grasp with clear certainty. While I can appreciate that poetry is certainly one such writing form that leaves room for its audience to interpret as they may, quite a few pieces present in “Afterwards” felt as though they were speaking strictly in metaphors and euphemisms, allowing the reader nothing in the form of sense to tie it all together, and muddling certain concepts I am sure they were trying to convey. This made it next to impossible to dissect or draw conclusions from them. This particular aspect of the collection left me feeling wholly unsatisfied, as I believe there could have been a more “user-friendly” and cohesive approach used, one that would allow the audience to relate and engage in the work with a bit more ease than the form it is in presently. Overall, I enjoyed my experience reading “Afterwards,” and I look forward to seeing the author’s future instalments. Thanks to NetGalley for providing this free, pre-publication manuscript.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jamie

    Losing a loved a love one is hard, but the loss of a loved one to suicide is even harder. It’s difficult because it’s preventrable, and it’s hard to explain the feeling of helplessness afterwards. This collection of poetry details the grief that comes with losing a friend, but it is other things too. Myers explores the loss of family, depression, and sexual assault. There are a handful of good poems, such as The Girl Becomes Gasoline which was what made me decide to pick this book up. “I don’t kn Losing a loved a love one is hard, but the loss of a loved one to suicide is even harder. It’s difficult because it’s preventrable, and it’s hard to explain the feeling of helplessness afterwards. This collection of poetry details the grief that comes with losing a friend, but it is other things too. Myers explores the loss of family, depression, and sexual assault. There are a handful of good poems, such as The Girl Becomes Gasoline which was what made me decide to pick this book up. “I don’t know when I became a space to be filled. My thigh an open lease, my neck a wishing well, and his hot breath, a coin, a demand, cast into me.” Several of the poems reference the death of Mac Miller, who had died of an accidental drug overdose in 2018. Myers mentions how Mac Miller had passed around the same time that she had lost one of her best friends to suicide, which she ties in to plans unfinished. What happened to Mac Miller is tragic and he should certainly be remembered, and maybe I just don’t understand American celebrity culture, but the fact that he was brought up over and over felt out of place. But I digress, as a whole the collection is pretty decent. The themes of the book are true to life and I appreciated Myer’s willingness to share her authentic self. Disclaimer: Received a copy for review from the publisher via NetGalley ✮ Read this review and more like it on my blog ✮

  12. 5 out of 5

    Martina Weiß

    I was given a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review 5 / 5 Stars I was really hoping to love this book, because it was dealing with stuff that I could relate to. Most books about recovery and trauma are rather hit or miss, because they are trying to be philosophical. This one isn't. It's raw and intense and honest and I absolutly loved it. I'm still feeling rather emotional while writing this, which is exactly how I want to feel when I read this kind of poetry. The I was given a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review 5 / 5 Stars I was really hoping to love this book, because it was dealing with stuff that I could relate to. Most books about recovery and trauma are rather hit or miss, because they are trying to be philosophical. This one isn't. It's raw and intense and honest and I absolutly loved it. I'm still feeling rather emotional while writing this, which is exactly how I want to feel when I read this kind of poetry. The beauty of this collection lies in its ability to make you cry , while also making you feel seen. There are some political poems in there and I wasn't sure how I would feel about them, but I gotta say, that Donald Trump poem was hella creative. I'd give you a content warning, but the blurb is already doing a great job when it comes to those, which means the only thing left for me to say is: If you're looking for a book that just gets it, a book with amazingly crafted poems and a book that's going to make you feel stuff, this is the collection for you.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kelly MacCormac

    I received an advanced readers copy of Afterwards through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This is a short poetry book that deals with the tough subjects of grief, mental illness - most notably body dismorphia and depression - and living life after trauma. This book dealt with some very tough discussions and while the poems were honest and raw, I found it quite hard to fully connect with the style. The poems were well written and extremely meaningful but I found it hard to fully connec I received an advanced readers copy of Afterwards through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This is a short poetry book that deals with the tough subjects of grief, mental illness - most notably body dismorphia and depression - and living life after trauma. This book dealt with some very tough discussions and while the poems were honest and raw, I found it quite hard to fully connect with the style. The poems were well written and extremely meaningful but I found it hard to fully connect with the writing. As a reader that deals with issues discussed, my lack of connection meant that I did not find this book triggered negative feelings which is good. The rating of this book reflects my personal feelings of connection and how this book related to me. It is quite hard to rate poetry as the person behind the book has let their soul out on paper but unfortunately I didn’t feel a full sense of connection. Reading poetry is a new thing for me, it will take time to discover my favourite styles and themes but it was overall a decent read!

  14. 5 out of 5

    BooksAndRae

    "Depression is a silent film, a monologue shot underwater" This heart wrenching and vulnerable collection manages to traverse through the feelings of depression, grief and more by taking you on a lyrical journey, navigating what it feels like to be human and face what the world has given you. Each poem offers a moment of vulnerability and honesty. Opening you up to a place where you might relate, and if not, giving you the chance to understand and listen to the voice in the poems. There were many "Depression is a silent film, a monologue shot underwater" This heart wrenching and vulnerable collection manages to traverse through the feelings of depression, grief and more by taking you on a lyrical journey, navigating what it feels like to be human and face what the world has given you. Each poem offers a moment of vulnerability and honesty. Opening you up to a place where you might relate, and if not, giving you the chance to understand and listen to the voice in the poems. There were many poems that caught my attention. I feel silly for not having marked which poems, in particular, I am talking about but it was mostly because when I had finished one, I was either relishing in the words on the page or going straight to the next one, ready to see what would be next. The poems were beautiful and I'm so grateful to the publishers for providing me with an eArc in exchange for my honest review! I definitely recommend this book!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Genee

    Thank you, Netgalley, for the ARC! "Each unwanted touch is gasoline. Each prodding hand, flint. Each time a man assumes my space, he is just stoking the flame. And a spark, stoked enough, will burn down the whole house." Afterwards is filled with poems that will tug at your heartstrings. Reagan Myers takes readers through the many stages of grief and how she handles it. She also touches on mental illness and the effects it has on everyday life. This collection of poems resonated with me so well, Thank you, Netgalley, for the ARC! "Each unwanted touch is gasoline. Each prodding hand, flint. Each time a man assumes my space, he is just stoking the flame. And a spark, stoked enough, will burn down the whole house." Afterwards is filled with poems that will tug at your heartstrings. Reagan Myers takes readers through the many stages of grief and how she handles it. She also touches on mental illness and the effects it has on everyday life. This collection of poems resonated with me so well, and I wish I had it when I was going through the most intense part of the grief process after losing a loved one. I loved how the author addressed that grief isn't something that lasts for a few days or a year. It is an ongoing process. There will be times that will not be as intense, but grief is not always a one-and-done. If anyone is going through a loss or traumatic experience, I would 100 percent recommend this book & if you're not, I think it's still a great touching read.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Gicely

    4/5⭐: This poetry book was very powerful read from start to finish. I really enjoyed how the collection played around with form throughout the book. It was very grief heavy and centered around dark themes but it was captured beautifully. I loved the personification of depression and the discussion of body dysmorphia was really well done. There was also an interesting use of pop culture when comparing celebrity death (Mac Miller) to personal tragedy. The only reason this book was not a five for m 4/5⭐: This poetry book was very powerful read from start to finish. I really enjoyed how the collection played around with form throughout the book. It was very grief heavy and centered around dark themes but it was captured beautifully. I loved the personification of depression and the discussion of body dysmorphia was really well done. There was also an interesting use of pop culture when comparing celebrity death (Mac Miller) to personal tragedy. The only reason this book was not a five for me was a matter of personal preference. While I enjoyed the collection, there were not enough poems that would be powerful enough for a re-read for me personally but I definitely would recommend this book to poetry fans. ----My ARC copy of the book was provided by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for a fair, unbiased review.----

  17. 5 out of 5

    Louise Worthington

    This young poet and performance poet puts a human face onto clinical depression and grief so effectively, the reader might laugh - or cry! These are brave, heart-breaking poems written in free verse with an easy colloquial style, sometimes with light humour which I really liked. Set in a domestic world where families and celebrities exist and day-to-day life has to go on despite intense loss and sadness, this is a moving collection - albeit lacking in structure, but that perhaps reflects the mess This young poet and performance poet puts a human face onto clinical depression and grief so effectively, the reader might laugh - or cry! These are brave, heart-breaking poems written in free verse with an easy colloquial style, sometimes with light humour which I really liked. Set in a domestic world where families and celebrities exist and day-to-day life has to go on despite intense loss and sadness, this is a moving collection - albeit lacking in structure, but that perhaps reflects the messy nature of the subject nature and the youthfulness of Reagan's honest voice. (I recommend watching Reagan perform her poems on YouTube, Button Poetry. I love her performance of 'Depression is Funny Like That.'). I look forward to reading more from this talented poet. I received an advanced copy. Thank you to the poet and publicist.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Gabriel

    ARC given by NetGalley for Honest Review "Afterwards" is a beautiful look at how grief and closure is different for everyone. Myers dives into her friend (who committed suicide), her ex boyfriend (who was abusive) and her family. Each poem has unique emotion and kept me asking for more so I'm a little disappointed at how short this collection is! That being said, I has a wonderful time reading it and had to put it down to digest more than a few times, it was a very emotional journey and Myers did ARC given by NetGalley for Honest Review "Afterwards" is a beautiful look at how grief and closure is different for everyone. Myers dives into her friend (who committed suicide), her ex boyfriend (who was abusive) and her family. Each poem has unique emotion and kept me asking for more so I'm a little disappointed at how short this collection is! That being said, I has a wonderful time reading it and had to put it down to digest more than a few times, it was a very emotional journey and Myers did a great job at conveying it to the reader. My favorite poems are "Depression Is Funny Like That", "Mac Miller", and "When Death Comes".

  19. 4 out of 5

    books4chess

    "You sound like an asshole and you look uncomfortable! I am next you in literally my pyjamas. You wouldn't need to smoke if your clothes felt like petting a hundred kittens" - the girl becomes gasoline. A beautiful, personal collection of Reagan's poems that cover grief, disordered eating, suicide and trauma. Her writing is raw, sarcastic and deprecating. It's approachable, equal parts funny and touching. Overall a wonderful, honest collection of writing and suitable for anyone who needs a fresh pe "You sound like an asshole and you look uncomfortable! I am next you in literally my pyjamas. You wouldn't need to smoke if your clothes felt like petting a hundred kittens" - the girl becomes gasoline. A beautiful, personal collection of Reagan's poems that cover grief, disordered eating, suicide and trauma. Her writing is raw, sarcastic and deprecating. It's approachable, equal parts funny and touching. Overall a wonderful, honest collection of writing and suitable for anyone who needs a fresh perspective or voice in their own moment of struggle. Thank you NetGalley for the ARC.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Genny

    A gorgeous compilation of poetry that demonstrates the complexities of grief. Every page has at least one line that hits you in your core and completely resonates with you. Definitely will be rereading this a few times over to appreciate and enjoy all the metaphors further. **I won this in a Goodreads Giveaway, but this did not sway my opinion in any way.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Vincent Pham

    Thanks to Button Poetry for the giveaway. This is a short collection of poems dealing with grief and trauma. It explores how sorrow and grief affect us, but explores ways to move forward as well. As with the nature of poetry, this collection is written with creative imagery and leaves room for interpretation for readers. Overall, the collection was decent and served a short and easy read.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    this morning I threw up blood in the shower / but I cleaned my apartment for the first time in two weeks / & isn't that how wars are won anyway / with a little bloodshed / & besides / it's not like it feels unfamiliar / you know / the feeling of something leaving you / that shouldn't this morning I threw up blood in the shower / but I cleaned my apartment for the first time in two weeks / & isn't that how wars are won anyway / with a little bloodshed / & besides / it's not like it feels unfamiliar / you know / the feeling of something leaving you / that shouldn't

  23. 5 out of 5

    GhostGirl_420

    I need this book!!!!! Is it any good?????

  24. 4 out of 5

    Kendra

    A collection of poems focused on depression and grieving with a sprinkle of poems about misogyny.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie

    As someone who suffered - and kinda still suffers - from depression, I can safly say, that this made me emotional. An absolutly wonderful book.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Timothy Hanson

  27. 5 out of 5

    Brynn Rova

  28. 5 out of 5

    lauren

  29. 4 out of 5

    jade

  30. 5 out of 5

    Liz

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