Young Writers Society

Home » Literary works » Poetry » General


soft hands mean hard hearts

by LadySpark


"All those paper people living in their paper houses, burning the future to stay warm. All the paper kids drinking beer some bum bought for them at the paper convenience store. Everyone demented with the mania of owning things. All the things paper-thin and paper-frail. And all the people, too. I've lived here for eighteen years and I have never once in my life come across anyone who cares about anything that matters."

--Paper Towns, John Green



The dead hearts are hidden under the floorboards,
no one can see there's something wrong.

He hands them to her silently

and she slips them into her faded apron pocket.
Tight lips the only communication they'll ever use.

The white washed boards hide the stains;
she's scrubbed till her knuckles are blue
to remove all evidence
that there was ever anything wrong.

Don't let them see, her mother told her, tying bows in her hair.
Don't show them your underbelly, they'll stab you every time.

Everything is fake and shiny
new like a baby's face when it sleeps.
His lips are pulled tight against the smile
pressed into his white teeth.

Her hair has faded, it was once gold.
Now it hangs lifeless, the breeze through the kitchen window
lifting it off her shoulders.
The perfect curls waving like a flag of retreat.

The whistle is off-key when he crosses the street,
but the neighbors don't notice he's been sleeping on the porch instead
of his warm bed.

Her hums have stopped when she stands outside her home
but her smile is still there, when she waves at the neighbors.

The streets aren't full of pain, but the houses are.

Hot words should never be exchanged over a cold dinner.
The safe little house patches all the holes,
so they can sleep in a glass coffin peacefully.

They're skeletons to each other,
lives revolving around each other; against their will.

When the snap of the key breaking echoes through the silence
he feels the facade finally slip off his face
she'll paint him a new one on in the morning.

Collecting dust, they join the relics of frozen faces.


Note: You are not logged in, but you can still leave a comment or review. Before it shows up, a moderator will need to approve your comment (this is only a safeguard against spambots). Leave your email if you would like to be notified when your message is approved.







Is this a review?


  

Comments



User avatar
109 Reviews


Points: 257
Reviews: 109

Donate
Mon Jan 27, 2014 12:06 pm
rbt00 wrote a review...



Beautiful :)) <3
Keep writing.

The white washed boards hide the stains;
she's scrubbed till her knuckles are blue
to remove all evidence
that there was ever anything wrong.


The whistle is off-key when he crosses the street,
but the neighbors don't notice he's been sleeping on the porch instead
of his warm bed.


Hot words should never be exchanged over a cold dinner.
The safe little house patches all the holes,
so they can sleep in a glass coffin peacefully.

They're skeletons to each other,
lives revolving around each other; against their will.

When the snap of the key breaking echoes through the silence
he feels the facade finally slip off his face
she'll paint him a new one on in the morning.

These stanza's were amazing.
Regards




User avatar
1007 Reviews


Points: 13831
Reviews: 1007

Donate
Sun Jan 26, 2014 11:24 pm
View Likes
TimmyJake wrote a review...



Timmy here for a review on review day!

This was such a beautiful poem. Most poems don't have a big story to them, and just fly wherever they want to. Not this one. I can see what you are talking about, and you weave a wonderful(but sad) story to me, the reader.

It seems to me that the person you are talking about doesn't have a heart. She took it out years ago so she would never hurt, but she lost something far greater than hurt. It would have been better to keep the heart! At least, I think that is what your message here is. lol

He hands them to her silently

and she slips them into her faded apron pocket.
Tight lips the only communication they'll ever use. ---Did you mean for the first line in that stanza to be farther apart from the rest?


Don't let them see, her mother told her, tying bows in her hair. ----That line doesnt' flow for me... Maybe, Her mother told them to not let them see? I don't know... Poetry isn't really my forte, anyway


Her hair has faded, it was once gold.
Now it hangs lifeless, the breeze through the kitchen window ---Not a critique. I just love the imagery you put in the whole stanza here! Not just those two lines...


Collecting dust, they join the relics of frozen faces. ---So a new face everyday?


So this poem was AWESOME! Such a sad, but beautiful story inside those words!
Happy writing and happy review day!
~Timmyjake




User avatar
805 Reviews


Points: 1758
Reviews: 805

Donate
Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:54 am
View Likes
Aley wrote a review...



I'm going to try CowLogic's thing with not talking directly to you but giving a solid review. <3

Review: The Silent Fight ("soft hands mean hard hearts" by SparktoFlame)

In the tradition of conversational literature, SparktoFlames introduces us to her poem with a quote. The excerpt from Paper Towns by John Green prepares the reader for an exploration of the materialistic world we've come to know. What SparktoFlames delivers is furthering the discussion of this materialism into how it has affected our ability to love and relate to one another.

Right in the first line, we receive haunting allusions to Edgar Allan Poe's The Tell-Tale Heart as she begins with this vivid image of "The dead hearts are hidden under the floorboards,/no one can see there's something wrong." This dramatic entry into the poem doesn't leave us wanting as SparktoFlames majestically adds to Poe's story with a helping hand, literally. Going beyond Poe's singular hell, SparktoFlames brings up the discussion of what is considered 'okay' for today's society by giving this killer someone to clean up after him in a sickening twist to the story.

This, in just the first stanza of the poem, sets the tone for a mystifying statement about how we've begun to pass down for generations (lines 10-11) that we must cover up what our families do behind closed doors and ignore the injustices among neighbors.

While her visuals are not always clear, such as "the safe little house patches all the holes,/so they can sleep in a glass coffin peacefully," (lines 27-28) being unclear about whether the glass coffin is for the people who live in the houses, or for the houses who have gone through these crime because of the people, they are all very clear and easy to picture as the poem goes along.

The author uses the poem to dance around not just family matters which we are obligated to hide in this day and age, but also a more serious topic of broken households. While she doesn't appear to be directly talking about abuse, due to "but the neighbors don't notice he's been sleeping on the porch instead/of his warm bed," (lines 21-22) she does touch on the segregation and damage hiding such a destructive part of your life can do.

Overall this poem is a haunting reminder of what materialism and secrets can do to a society. The arguments are mostly clear with her spectacular use of allusion, imagery, and structure, SparktoFlames leaves us with a dark perspective on society today.




User avatar
433 Reviews


Points: 13351
Reviews: 433

Donate
Fri Jan 03, 2014 11:03 pm
View Likes
TakeThatYouFiend wrote a review...



This is a very nice poem with a slightly broken rhythm that makes the reader uneasy, and several deep meanings behind your words. I think the quote at the beginning works well, and it maps onto the poem really well. There is slight misunderstanding on my part however, I am not sure whether the quote is your inspiration or not. If so well done on not "stealing" from your insperation.
Hope This Helps,
Take That You Fiend!




User avatar
592 Reviews


Points: 1281
Reviews: 592

Donate
Fri Jan 03, 2014 9:03 pm
View Likes
fortis wrote a review...



Aw :(
this is a sad poem.
I think this worked really well with the quote that you pulled (I really like that quote too!), even though you don’t make mention of paper at all. You paint this beautiful and miserable picture of these people who pretend to be happy, who pretend to be perfect, who pretend there’s nothing wrong.

You use fantastic imagery to describe all parts of the story. I was about to pick out which stanzas were my favorite imagery-wise, but I realized they’re all too good, and so packed with really concrete images to pick just one or two.
I only have a few suggestions.

The one line:

He hands them to her silently
Is kind of its own stanza, and I don’t see why, because it flows into the next two lines, and I don’t see any need for special attention on that particular line, unlike the other one-liner stanzas you have.
The way you present all these details seems kind of disjointed. That was probably intentional, because this is a very disjointed subject, but I think the poem might be easier to understand, easier on the brain if there was some sort of flow to the instances. For example, you might first talk about what’s going on inside the house, then move to the outside. Or you might order it chronologically, or from small moments to the big picture. Right now it’s just sort of discombobulated, which again, works with the subject of your poem.

One other thing, I really liked the title of this poem and hoped to see some reference to it (the soft hands part especially) but I was disappointed in that I didn’t see anything relating to it.

So I commend you on the images, and the emotion which was clearly felt. You used adjectives like superior technology. Great job, really great job.
Keep writing!
~fortis




LadySpark says...


Lol that stanza thing is a mistake. Thanks for catching it and the review!




"You, who have all the passion for life that I have not? You, who can love and hate with a violence impossible to me? Why you are as elemental as fire and wind and wild things..."
— Gone With the Wind