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500 Miles

by Carlito


We knew the day would come,
But even then it felt so far away
We planned and we prepared,
So everything could always stay the same
But how naïve were we to think,
That we could all go off our separate ways
It’s not the same

I didn’t think 500 miles
Would feel quite so far away

I miss you – quite terribly…
All our long talks and crazy plans,
Causing trouble and sharing laughs
I really miss you – please return to me…
All that time we spent together
I thought we’d handle this much better

You were everything to me,
I knew that I could always tell you anything
Now I’m scared because I’m happy,
And I’m not sure what you would think
I know you’re fighting demons,
Haunted by the ghosts that nearly brought you down
Back then we battled monsters,
And you saved me – is it my turn now

I miss you – quite terribly…
My brave and fearless monster slayer
Your honest words and caring nature
I really miss you – please return to me…
Life is different now without you
And I don’t like it, I don’t want to

I know I left, and it’s my fault
I had to fly, and boy I flew
I know I told you I’d come back
500 miles to see you

I know I could have made more efforts
I could have called you on the phone
But I never thought we’d get this far –
Maybe 500 is just much too far

I miss you – quite terribly…
My friend, my boy, my confidante
My purple lion, my coach, the one
I really miss you – please return to me…
This time I’ll try to be better
500 miles but not forever


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Sun Aug 09, 2015 4:54 am
Mysticalxx says...



I like it! Its a song, isn't it? I really like how you've rhymed the lines, and yet not quite rhymed them. The title is really good. Just one question: what is a purple lion? :D

Overall, great job. Keep it up!

Mysticalxx




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Fri Jul 17, 2015 10:58 pm
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Wolfi wrote a review...



The Big Review

Hi Carlito! I was going to review the last chapter of your "Mic Night" book, but it doesn't look like I'll have enough time to (my dad wants me to practice golf right now >.<). I apologize in advanced because I know this review is going to be rushed, and I'm not as good at reviewing poetry or lyrics, as I'm far from a poet or songwriter myself, but I'll try my best!

My, my... I can really tell how experienced you are as a lyricist by reading just this one song. The mention of the "monster slayer" is just like the title of your portfolio. Perhaps it's the title of an album you have planned? :)

500 miles but not forever

This is the only line that I didn't quite understand. Are you referring to the fact that five hundred miles is far, but you won't be far forever?

Pomp might be right saying that this topic isn't a fresh one, but isn't every song on the radio related to love? A breakup, a first date, a lost friend? What I would like to hear is the melody of this song. If you have one, that is!

At some parts of the song, I'm wondering who's far away from who. Clearly the girl took a plane and moved five hundred miles away from the guy, but when she says, "please return to me," it's seems like the other way around.

More than anything, this is just beautifully written. You know how to maintain a steady rhythm and use the perfect words to get your point across. All the songs you have listed on the right could become an awesome album!

I'm sorry, but I have to go now! :( I owe you a better review. Keep writing!




Carlito says...


No worries! I'm glad you enjoyed it! You're right, "How to Conquer Monsters" is the title of the 'album' all the songs on the right belong in (still a work in progress). Not all of them include references to "monsters", but there's a common thread through all of them (at least to me :p).
Hopefully I'll have time to figure out how to play the melody sometime this summer. I hear it so well in my head, but it's not always easy actually putting that on paper...
All of my lyrics are based on things in my life. So this one is about how I moved away (roughly 500 miles) from all of my friends after college. This is mainly inspired by one friendship in particular - he meant the World to me in college and we thought nothing would change after I left, but it unfortunately did. So that 500 miles feels pretty far. The last line refers to the fact that I'm still going to be 500 miles away, but I'm going to try to be better about making it not feel that way.

Thanks for the review!! :)



Wolfi says...


Oh, that's just awesome!!!! Best of luck to you! My better review to you will be an overall review for "Call Me Alice." ;)



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Fri Jul 10, 2015 7:57 pm
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Pompadour wrote a review...



Hello, Carlito! Pomp here for The Big Review. I've never been too great at critiquing lyrics, but seeing as I could find nothing recent to review, I hope you'll bear with my rambles~

So, my initial thoughts on this piece were mostly running along these lines: that this is a concept I've seen before, and heard before, and tried to understand before. Meaning, while the story itself is relatable (since it talks about long-distance/failed relationships and longing), the piece falls under the heading of lyrical cliché. I think, when it comes down to it, what we choose to write about depends entirely on us, but as a reader--and a listener to music in general XD--I was bothered by two things:

1) That this is an idea that has been played with a million times; it's not new.

2) Even if it is a common idea, it lacks freshness. It lacks 'spin'. It does not make me ache, feel anything different, or want to re-read the piece again and again just to get that feel. I want to get ache-y feelings from this, really, I do. But the beginning does not hook me. The word-choice in certain places is powerful, but at other points it sounds very ... familiar.

What I want as a reader: Something fresh.

There's this fabulous article I think you could find helpful; it's for poetry, but can also apply to lyrics.

Besides this, the piece didn't prove as way impactful because it runs on tangents: you talk about the narrator's relationship, but as it is right now, it feels like the words exist for the sake of being words, not words being emotions. I can't entirely focus on the relationship because it doesn't feel solid to me. There are just so many aspects of it that you're trying to coop up into one, and it just lends the entire work an overall ... placid feel. I don't know what is most deserving of my attention: the fact that the narrator is guilty; the high points of the narrator + addressee's relationship ('honest words ... caring nature', 'purple lion' etc.); the feeling of loss that lingers; the addressee's battling 'demons'; or the narrator's regret.

My attention is splaying in a thousand directions. I'm a detached, grumpy reader with my specs slipping down my nose and my head shaking morosely. You need to fix this.

My suggestion: Establish what the reader/listener needs to know to connect with the addressee, then focus on conveying this. Avoid being vague in what you have to say, and cross out unneeded verses, like the 'I miss your honest and caring nature' which just sounds bland and insincere when put that way. Ask yourself: 'What do my readers need to know?' Right now, what I'm most interested in isn't hearing about the narrator' guilt or the fine points of their relationship, but in getting a clearer idea of the cause/effect that's governed the way things have turned out. Why did the narrator break off the relationship? They sounded quite happy to me; I'm confused as to where their story took 'the turn', and this is something that the song barely touches, and which I am dying to find out more about. Narrow this down, perhaps, to one scene, to one factor in their relationship, to something solid--whether it's told to us entirely in metaphor, or whether it's in blunt, honest format.

I'll be honest with another thing, which is that the repetitive strain of 'I miss you' does not sound as strong when we don't really know what reason the narrator has for this. Sure, you mention qualities, but what else? I'd like this better if the story had a point A, a point B, and grey patches in between where you pour the emotion through.

Vague bits (as aforementioned):

All that time we spent together
I thought we’d handle this much better


The way it's formatted and punctuated right now, it reads like the narrator feels like the addressee and they were unable to handle the time they spent together--while in actuality I'm pretty sure this is referring to something else.

(This brings me to another thing: Punctuation. I know it doesn't seem that important, because lyrics are meant to be sung, but punctuation is actually a very powerful tool, especially in script/lyrics, both of which are meant to be performed. Punctuation is a quiet informant of where a pause would be appropriate, where it lasts longer, and it's key to making sure ideas are divided and don't mangle up with one another. I notice that you don't consistently punctuate this piece; and I'd suggest you either punctuate all of it, or not at all. Consistency things, you know. XD)

Your honest words and caring nature...


^Bland amidst talk of monsters. It's a bit like climbing a mountain only to jump off the peak without posting a Facebook status about it.

My purple lion, my coach, the one...


~ Purple lion? Coach? I have a feeling this is supposed to signify something, but it doesn't, and it feels prosaic after the more down-to-earth verses (talking on the phone, making efforts, etc.). The tone takes an upturn after the nosedive! And this is strange, because the shift is too abrupt for me to digest.

Overall, I think this is an interesting idea, with tons of potential, and I'm impressed by the beat this certain piece has. It would sound lovely when sung, I think, and you have some pretty cool imagery, too. Personally, my favourite line is, 'is it my turn now(?)' because it's so ... honest. It's filled with warmth and sincerity, and I'd like if this warmth was steadily conveyed instead of falling flat in places.

Great job on this! Keep writing! Keep up the fantastic work~

Hope this helped. PM me if you have any questions.

Cheers,

~Pomp c:




Carlito says...


Thanks for the long and thoughtful review! :)

One quick comment - you mentioned the story and you wanted to know more about "the turn". All of my lyrics have stories associated with them :) After I graduated from college I moved roughly 500 miles away from all of my friends. This was inspired by my relationship with one of my very good college friends and how our relationship has changed since I left. I'm not quite sure how it changed exactly, but it has. Not sure if that changes anything for you :p

But thanks again! I really appreciate the time you put into this!!



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Thu Jul 09, 2015 11:46 pm
Willard says...



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Thu Jul 09, 2015 2:29 pm
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cleverclogs says...



In answer to your question about formatting:

When you're in the YWS publisher, press "shift" along with "enter" when you're making a new line. That'll remove the double space and the need for the little "--" things. Hope this helped. :)




Morrigan says...


You're wonderful. I was going to say the same thing.



Carlito says...


Whoo it worked! Thank you!! :)



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Thu Jul 09, 2015 7:06 am
UriahElroy wrote a review...



Greetings! My name is Uriah, and I'd like to give an unwarranted review on your poem, "500 Miles."

As far as your question of the formatting goes, I'm having the same problem myself, so I'm no help. I suck and I'm sorry.

As far as the review goes, the plot is interpretative. But before analyzing the plot, I have an observation regarding works of this nature (which often seem to contain the themes of; distance between two people and the consequential pining.) First, the significance of the number 5, like that one song by those two guys I don't know;

"And I would walk 500 miles and I would walk 500 more."

Or that other song from the nineties, by that chick whose name I forget;

"Cause you know I would walk 500 miles, just to see you. *Epic memorable keyboard*"

Or, that one song from the musical Rent;

"five-hundred-twenty-five-thousand-six-hundred-minutes."

I dunno, the number 5 is just... odd.

Anyways, back to the plot.

At first I thought it was just, like, a country song about a messy break-up or something . Then I thought a little deeper, and considered that it may be about a husband being deployed to war. Then, with the ambiguous ending of "500 miles, but not forever," I considered that said-husband died overseas. Then I got sad, cause that would suck.

Despite what your actual purpose/inspiration in writing this was, and how close or far my interpretation was, it's still a good work, and I hope all is well. I could totally see this being a country song, and that's not a bad thing.

Cheers, from the squalid outskirts of Quaker Country!




Carlito says...


Hey thanks for the review!
The significance about the 500 is that after I graduated from college I moved roughly 500 miles away from most of my friends. Even though we're all still friends, it's different now because we don't live a few doors down from one another. My relationship with one of my favorite people in college inspired this :)
I think it's cool that you were able to derive other meanings from it though! That's what makes lyrics so fun! Glad you enjoyed it :)




Be careful or be roadkill.
— Calvin