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Young Writers Society

Silent Letters

by Empires

Why must we be silenced, so that other letters can shine? 

The "h" in through had dreams of being a hero,
where it could be heard and appreciated. 

The "b" in subtle didn't actually want to be subtle,
but be bold and in the spotlight for once. 

We are all members of the alphabet
Put some respect on our names. 

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54 Reviews

Points: 167
Reviews: 54

Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:35 am
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woahhitherepal wrote a review...

Hello Empires I'm here to review your poem a little (:
lets dive right in.
okay so, this poem is really amazing. You got your message across so well without being very direct at all, and I salute you for that.
the very last two lines really go to me

"We are all members of the alphabet
Put some respect on our names."

I really love that, truly I do. There's so much impact there behind 13 words and its absolutely beautiful.
this is a very good poem and I cannot express enough how much I love it.
Have a lovely day!!

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806 Reviews

Points: 1883
Reviews: 806

Mon Sep 11, 2017 12:26 am
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Aley wrote a review...

Hey Empires,

I reviewed your last poem and I'm here to review this one too.

I feel like you have a good idea here, like, I like that you're working with words, but it feels a bit impersonal. Like, I want to see more of the individual in this poem and develop a feeling for the speaker, whether it's the letters, or the alphabet, or a human, I don't care, I want to really be able to get into their heads and understand them.

Part of what I think is making me feel that separation is that you don't actually go into any real detail about the reactions to these silences, or why they happen. I mean, I know one of my biggest peeves is the silent "e" because I used to always forget it, and yet you don't even go into that. You've got a lovely opportunity here to talk about why vowels respond to one another being around, and play with the idea of stressed verses unstressed, or long vs short vowels, and yet you miss it completely by only delving into two letters.

I feel like this could be better if you looked at more letters and spent some more time considering the alliteration in the poem. You drop your "h" alliteration so fast that it almost doesn't get noticed, and then the "b" alliteration is pretty much the same because you use "be" twice in it, and the only real word we pick up on is "bold" even though there are four letters of "b" in the last five words.

If your words "appreciated" and "spotlight" started with a "B" and an "H" respectively then it would be a better tone. Like maybe "heard" and "heralded" or "happier" or whatever you come up with, and then with "b" you could use "in the band" or, again, whatever you can find. Spend some time on it to really push the word choice.

If you do that and add to the poem, I think it will give it more flavor and as you add, you can continue working on stretching the idea of individuality and relationships between letters to really give it the full kick this poem deserves.

I'm glad to see another one of your poems.


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21 Reviews

Points: 325
Reviews: 21

Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:01 pm
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KayLou1609 wrote a review...

Hi there! Here to leave a review :)

I love this poem and would love for it to be longer. There are so many words with silent letters, therefore you've got plenty of room to add more lines and stanzas to your poem. It would entertain the reader even more than it already does :)

There's not much I can critique you on due to the shortness of the poem, but I would suggest maybe splitting up the last line on the 2nd and 3rd stanzas to create a more free-flowing effect? For example:

where it could be heard
and appreciated

I really like how you've used the metaphor of letters to represent people who have been left in the background. It's a clever and imaginative way of doing it, and since letters and language are so common, many people will be able to relate to this.

Other than that, I really love this poem. Just a few more tweaks (and hopefully making it longer :) ) will make it as perfect as possible.


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31 Reviews

Points: 1025
Reviews: 31

Sun Sep 10, 2017 6:14 am
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KaiTheGreater says...

Well. I am touched. :')

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30 Reviews

Points: 1912
Reviews: 30

Sun Sep 10, 2017 4:29 am
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ardentlyThieving wrote a review...

Hey hey, Ardently here for a review!

I'm a big fan of this poem! It's cute, it's short and it's funny. There's a lot of serious poetry on this site, and while I enjoy serious poetry, and write some myself, I do enjoy seeing people write poems that are just plain fun. And that's what this is: fun. It was fun to read, and I get the feeling from it that you found it fun to write.

One thing that I like, I'm not sure if it was intentional, but I get the feeling that it was, is the fact that both of the letters want to be a word starting with them. The H wants to be Heard and the the B wants to be Bold. The funny part here being that in those words specifically they aren't silent; they are heard and bold.

I like the little bit of personification going on here as well, with the H wanting to be a hero and the B not wanting to be subtle. It's quite charming, and reinforces the idea that this poem is written by the letters themselves.

One critique that I do have is something other reviewers have expressed, that maybe this poem could've been a little longer. You had a good thing going on here, and while it's nice that this poem doesn't overstay it's welcome, you could have added more without it becoming dull. Like I said, humorous poems can be a rare treat sometimes, one I enjoy as much of as possible, whenever they appear.

But honestly, you can take that as some strong praise indeed that my only complaint is that I wish your poem was longer.

~ Ardently <3 ~

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299 Reviews

Points: 24185
Reviews: 299

Sat Sep 09, 2017 1:49 am
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TheSilverFox wrote a review...

Good day, and welcome to YWS, Empires!

Honestly, if there's anything that disappoints me, it's the poem's shortness. Everything else is pretty fantastic - the metaphor of silent letters is conveyed strongly, and the two stanzas in which it is directly addressed are great. I feel like your use of words with a notable "h" and "b" sound after their silent equivalents was intentionally, and so it comes across as a clever literary tactic that helps demonstrate the hopes and aspirations of the silent letters (manifesting as representations of silent, pushed-aside people, I presume). The connections between the parts of the poem are superb, with the first and last linked splendidly by the use of "we". As such, you build a message of defiance against the crushing and silencing of innocent people, effectively communicated at the end by revealing the intent of the metaphor and adding an evocative line ("put some respect on our names," which sounds profound and unique).

However, like I said, I wish this was longer. The middle part, in particular, could deserve to have some more silent letters discussed. What are each of their aspirations? How have they been pushed aside; was it intentional? How do they feel about this? That could build up the metaphor further, allow me more reasons to feel the plight of the silenced, and allow you to add even more clever wording. Hence, the poem can become much stronger than it already is, all thanks to showing the victims and their tattered lives. On a larger scale, this could eliciting appropriate sympathy and sadness from the audience, rallying them to your message of fighting back against the silencers. Nevertheless, this is a fantastic poem, and I'm surprised by your abilities, given how new you are to the site. Thanks for this poem!

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176 Reviews

Points: 1983
Reviews: 176

Sat Sep 09, 2017 1:33 am
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sheysse wrote a review...

Hey there! Shey here for a review!

This is a cute, short poem that I'm quite fond of. You're able to convey what you want to in a quick, five line poem, and that's pretty cool. More often than not, poets end up writing long winded, wordy poems to get a very simple message across. You being able to write short poems and still have a distinguished meaning is awesome.

I love what you did in this piece. It's one of the "characterization of things we take for granted works", and I'm a massive fan of those. It's actually really similar to things I've written in the past, which is why I think I love it so much. Taking simple things (like letters) and giving them emotions, feelings, character, is really, really, REALLY cool.

You personified the "h" in through. I don't like this specific example as much because there's two h's, so it gets a little confusing. Obviously, I figured out which h you were referring to, but it made me have to think for a bit. I would suggest finding another, more suitable word to replace through, since through didn't directly affect the line following it.

I loved the subtle example, because it uses the actual word in the following line. It's a punny way of incorporating the word again, and expressing your thoughts. I really loved it. Great job.

Overall, awesome job! Keep up the great work, cause I look forward to seeing more from you!


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1218 Reviews

Points: 146890
Reviews: 1218

Sat Sep 09, 2017 1:32 am
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alliyah wrote a review...

This was a short and delightful piece! I would love if this was expanded to use other letters too because just having two it seemed just a bit too short. If you had more letters you would have the opportunity to even create more personality with the letters as you went. You can use the internet if you need more ideas for silent letters, but there are tons of words out there like "k" in "knight" or "knowledge", "t" in "castle", "b" in "bomb" or "climb", "w" in "write", "g" in "sign" etc.

As far as formatting goes, I'm not sure that a double line break was really needed, and it made that first line stand out a bit more rather than flow into the next lines. I enjoyed how you used the sound that the letter should make to showcase words tat went with it. I wonder if you could play a little with alliteration or rhyming in the bookends of the piece (the first and last two lines) to continue to showcase the sounds you're using.

Overall, it was an original idea and was executed well! My main piece of criticism is I wanted to read more of it! :)


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497 Reviews

Points: 5791
Reviews: 497

Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:57 pm
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Que wrote a review...

Hello Empires!

This is a really fun idea, comparing people to letters. Hopefully I'll be able to help you to refine this a bit more, or give you some ideas anyway. :)

For both examples you have, I think you could emphasize the letter a little bit more. For the h one, maybe just say "hero" instead of "superhero" to show the h working. For b, maybe "bold and in the bright spotlight". Also, maybe you should talk about how they are key in spelling, though, because how would "suttle" look? How would "throu" look? (Also, the g isn't pronounced in there, you may want to add that to your consideration!) Anyway, although they are ignored in speech, these letters make the words beautiful. Maybe mention that!

I was going to suggest adding more examples to strengthen your comparison, but it's actually a little hard to tell what you're exactly comparing, so I'm going to talk mostly about that. You say, "We're all members of the alphabet / Put some respect on our names." The first line makes sense, and I like that a lot in terms of metaphor. Some of us are important, but you don't always hear about us. I personally would think you should focus on that- have your point be, "let's notice those of us who are usually unacknowledged."

Your second line at the end, though, is a little bit trickier. Put some respect on our names? This isn't really about names of letters at all, so it kind of comes out of nowhere. Respect is a good thought, kind of like "give us the place we deserve". I think you might want to end on a very clear note, something relating to the beginning to make it stronger. I would go for, "We may be silent, but let us not be forgotten"- just an idea of mine, but you should definitely mess around with it some and figure out something that works!

Good luck with your writing! :)


I say, in matters of the heart, treat yo' self.
— Donna, Parks & Rec