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​Fleeting Embers of Us

by AilahEvelynMae


I thought I craved your presence,

Tried to mold love from the clay of our moments,

Deceived myself with visions of happiness at your side,

Yet now, as clarity dawns like a mournful sunrise,

I recognize the truth,

I never truly longed for you.

I adored the notion of who you were and what we could be,

Yet deep down, I was merely captivated

By the fact that you were the first to truly care about me.

When we first crossed paths,

We conversed through the night,

Your unwavering attention made me feel so cherished,

At last, someone who prioritized me,

No one else in your world mattered,

It was all about me, In the dim light, your hair remained a mystery,

But in the flickering firelight, I studied the contours of your face.

Respectfully, you walked me home,

Asked for my number, a dream I'd clung to so tightly,

And the next day, a text popped up, an invite in disguise,

I couldn't contain my excitement,

Little did I know, it was the start of a heartache in disguise.

Rock climbing, you taught me to belay,

And laughter filled the air, I smiled throughout.

Bowling and dinner, no one could compare to you,

The musical, meeting your family,

Crafting a lasting first impression,

Stargazing, painting at sunset,

More stars than I'd ever seen,

A picnic and hammocking,

You walked me home at 1:30, despite your 8 AM class,

A movie and our first kiss, My first kiss.

I believed I was falling for you,

Until the 4th of July,

When I gathered the courage to ask,

"What are we?"

A question that cut through my emotions like a sharp blade,

I'm so sorry,

I'm busy,

Homework,

I'm sick,

exhausted,

I'm visiting home during the break,

Sorry for being distant.

It's not you; it's me,

But the truth lies somewhere in between,

My feelings for you had shifted,

Every moment with you had become a burden,

I'm on a path of self-discovery,

A journey I must undertake alone.

You deserve better,

Truly, you do,

Even though every moment with you felt like a weight,

I still miss what we once were,

And what we might have become,

It's me, it truly is,

But it's also you,

I don't know how to mend myself anymore.

Now, it's over,

When my parents ask about you,

I'll tell them you're doing well,

Immersed in your studies,

Yet you live just down the street.

You're more of a friend now than anything else,

The moments we've shared hold significance,

Everything was genuine and meaningful,

I'll never forget how safe I felt with you,

But I'll also never forget the freedom I found when we said goodbye.

All I want you to know is that I'm sorry,

We never got to create the memories we yearned for,

We never shared a final kiss,

I'll miss the tranquility I felt in your arms at sunset,

And how your embrace kept me warm.

I'm sorry I couldn't offer you what you hoped for,

I'm sorry I couldn't grow to love you,

Or linger long enough to hear you say it,

You deserve more,

What I'm trying to say is, I'll cherish every beautiful moment we had,

And hold onto these memories forever.

Goodbye, I'll see you around.


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Sun Sep 17, 2023 3:12 am
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Plume wrote a review...



Hey there! Plume here, with a review!

I really enjoyed reading your poem! I think my favorite part was how you captured the nuance of the relationship. With a lot of poems, especially breakup poems, I feel like so many of them are either spurning the lover that betrayed them or are full of despair and longing for the love that they lost, and it was refreshing that this was about neither, and rather about the speaker realizing that they grew apart from their love, which, in and of itself, is a very human thing to occur. The way the poem took the reader along the course of the relationship was also very nicely done, and the shifts were clearly marked along the plotline, all while the narrator, from the future, looks back in a regretful way knowing how the story ends. I loved how you got both sadness and affection from the speaker; if you nailed one thing, it was the emotions present in this tender piece.

The one thing I wondered is if your poem could be more concise. I know poetry is all about unpacking things and having a longer poem is definitely a choice you can make, but here, I felt like there was a lot that could be refined. To employ a food metaphor, it feels like the poem is so spread out that I'm not getting enough flavor with every bite, but if it were condensed, the flavor would really pack a punch. In other words, I feel like your big ideas are so spread out and a lot could be summarized with greater impact if they were put in one punchy line. It's helpful to sit down and think about what you really want to convey and experimenting with different ways of doing it (i. e. thinking very consciously about your word choice, experimenting with metaphors/other figurative language, etc).

If you don't want to condense it down because you like the feel of the longer poem (which is totally valid!) I think implementing some sort of structure could help the poem feel more cohesive. Whether that be putting in a pattern of some sort (like repeating phrases, rhymes, recurring motifs) or even breaking it up into stanzas, adding just an element of structure would help make the poem feel a little less superfluous, in my opinion. Again, these are just my thoughts; feel free to take what you think is helpful! Especially if this is a poem written to get your thoughts down; I find sometimes, writing is just helpful to organize emotions, and doesn't necessarily need to be revised.

Specifics

I thought I craved your presence,

Tried to mold love from the clay of our moments,


I just wanted to say I loved that opening line!

It was all about me, In the dim light, your hair remained a mystery,


Small thing here, in this line: I don't think "In" should be capitalized, since it's in the middle of a line.

Overall: nice work! I think the narrative you told in this poem is gorgeous, and with a little refining, it could be made even more poignant. Let me know if you have any specific questions about the review, and I really do hope I get to read more of your poetry soon; you're very talented! Until next time!




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Sun Sep 17, 2023 12:27 am
Ventomology wrote a review...



Heyy! Just stopping by for a quick revmo review.

So I'll start out by seconding LuminescentAnt on their point that it is interesting that the two parties grow apart instead of breaking up with a lot of fanfare. I think that's a really common occurrence that we just don't see described often.

Now then...

I could be wrong, but I feel like there are two things kind of happening here: 1) You're trying to tell a complete story of the relationship and 2) you want to convey the emotions associated with heartbreak at the end of that relationship.

One thing I've heard said sometimes about poetry is that you can use it to encompass a huge swathe of emotion in a single moment, and I think this could be especially pertinent to this poem. Why? Because I think cleaning up exactly how much of the relationship you choose to describe will help you dig into the specific moments that matter the most, the moments that capture the largest range of emotions. And that trimming, in turn, will give you more space and freedom to follow Ant's advice and take some more time to have visual/other sensory descriptions.

Another possibility, and this is really out on a limb... more like an idea that might be worth exploring than something to seriously consider: I think it might be interesting if you really lean into the idea of this poem as a letter/speech to the ex. I think if you do that, it may free you from some of the expository that you maybe feel you have to include for all of us, and help you find different ways of talking about what happened.

And last point: I love the list of excuses after the "What are we" line. The repetition and the punchiness of each line makes it hit really well.

Great work! Hope this helps,

-Vento




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Fri Sep 15, 2023 2:26 am
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LuminescentAnt wrote a review...



Hi! I'm dropping by to leave a super extra extra quick review!

This was a very sad but sweet poem, but it actually wasn't too sad. I liked how you started off with describing a normal relationship, and how happy the couple was, and all the joyful memories they made together, it almost seemed like it could never break. But then, you introduced the start of the climax of the poem, in which the couple grew too far apart, and soon they weren't together anymore. But, they did not become angry at each other, which is interesting, and I actually like that! But in the end, the narrator closes the poem with a goodbye, which ties the poem closed nicely.

I liked how much emotion was in this poem and how we could feel the narrator's journey through their love life. The end especially expressed their feelings clearly and in a way that the reader can understand.

One thing though - I think this poem could use a little visual description, maybe at the part where the narrator describes all the memories they made with their partner. It seems like that part went by so fast, (at least for me) and I think a little more description on what looked and felt like would help the poem have more depth.

Overall, this is an emotional poem about someone who has experienced a break-up, and it elaborately describes their feelings about this. I hope this review was helpful!
Happy Writing!
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