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The Candles Melted

by Lightsong

The cries of pain were warnings of death
in that house made barren by the intruder's cruelty,
disgusted by a speck of dust scattering on the floor—
melted parts of the candles—while forgetting he was
an intruder, unwanted and uninvited.

The pitch of woes—so high it hurt the world's ears—
came from the candles that had yet
to support flames brightening them.
They melted, because the flame they did support
did not enlightened but destroyed— it destroyed them.
It would prevail to pulverize others
the candles guarded close in fear and love.

All because of a house.
All because of whispers from the wind
coming from an unknown source—no,
all because of the stinging lies dressed as absolute truths.
All because the intruder saw the lights as
bringers of maddening inferno.

The candles understood some of them
were lit to annihilate under a misguided—or was it beneficial?
—belief that they did it for good,
that they did it to cease the monsters
assisting the intruder.
The candles were against their lethal others, but
why should the candles be the target too?

They melted while the world watched
with its loud protests but limited actions
as the power rested in the hand of the intruder
who frowned and clicked their tongue,
firmly believing the house belonged to them.

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99 Reviews

Points: 603
Reviews: 99

Sun Jun 05, 2016 6:01 pm
Remington38 says...

Hello, This was written so well and the description is so good. My favorite line is " All because of the stinging lies dressed as absolute truths." It is so elegant and the way each line flows is really nice. You can feel all of the emotion brimming behind all of it. Overall very good. Keep on writing!

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827 Reviews

Points: 28751
Reviews: 827

Sat Feb 06, 2016 2:00 am
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Morrigan wrote a review...

Heyo, Lightsong.

I feel the passion in this. I feel that you sat down to write this and it all poured out. I think that's great. I love writing poetry like that. Also, you stick with the strong image of the candle throughout the poem to try to convey a strong message.

That being said, there are quite a few things that could use improvement.

As Autumns said, this poem needs more help standing on its own, without a description. If you have to mention Gaza, do it. But without any clue, the poem loses its purpose.

This might seem like a petty nitpick to you, but it really bothered me that you used two hyphens instead of an em dash. Here's one so you can copy and paste it into your poem! —

The first stanza is a little confusing in its sentence structure. I was confused about who was doing what? The intruder seems like he's the one lighting the candles? Which could be true, but overall that first stanza needs to be clearer.

to support flames brightening them.
I like the idea of candles supporting flames, but this line seems a little like it's folding back over on itself. Say either brightening or supporting, but not both. It's a little too much. You use supporting very soon after, so perhaps "brightening" is best.

did not enlightened but destroyed-- it destroyed them.

Change "enlightened" to "enlighten" and I think you should just say "it destroyed them" instead of "destroyed-- it destroyed them." The repetition doesn't really work here.

I feel like the second and fourth stanzas are unnecessary. You don't have to take them out, but the poem would be more elegant without them, and would leave more room for interpretation. I think they'd need some reworking to become necessary for the overall arc of the poem.

Some of your line breaks are off. While I understand the concept of enjambment, there are more elegant ways to go about it than ending the line right in the middle of the clause. Try to end on strong words like nouns and verbs, not articles or conjunctions. For example,
while forgetting he was
an intruder,

A more elegant way to break the line would be after forgetting.

There are several other lines where you end on weak words. Keep an eye out for them.

Altogether, this is pretty solid, and I'm just picking on it because I know you can make this even better! Woohoo! I hope that this review proves useful to you! Happy writing!

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155 Reviews

Points: 0
Reviews: 155

Fri Feb 05, 2016 9:36 am
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Arcticus wrote a review...

Hey there Lightsong. Here's what I have to say about this poem-

The thing that stands out the most in the poem is the candle symbolism. It seems to me that it represents innocence or innocents affected by the circumstances.

There are many ways this poem could be better, though. For one, there's no clear 'Gaza imagery', and hadn't there been a mention of Gaza in the poem's description, the reader would not have the slightest idea of what the poem is about. There's nothing that points in that direction. You might want to work a little more on that.

The 'intruder' character is also rather vague. What or who is he/she/it? I imagined him as a soldier, but that's only because I know the back-story of the poem. If we assume the reader knows nothing about this back-story, I would say he/she would really have a hard time imagining what or who the intruder is. That's something else you might want to work on.

Overall, I would say this could use some more work, and niteowl has already made some good suggestions regarding that. Do tag me if you ever write another Gaza dedication.

I hope I could help. Regards.

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1238 Reviews

Points: 35807
Reviews: 1238

Fri Feb 05, 2016 3:39 am
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niteowl wrote a review...

Hi there Lightsong! Niteowl here as requested.

So I'm just going to go through this stanza by stanza then post my overall thoughts at the end.

Right now, the first stanza is written as all one sentence split up by dashes, yet it feels too crowded with ideas to be one sentence. It's also unclear who is "disgusted by the dust"...the intruder?

The pitch of woes--so high it hurt the world's ears--
came from the candles that had yet
to support flames brightening them.
They melted, because the flame they did support
did not enlightened but destroyed-- it destroyed them.

1) I feel like the 2nd/3rd lines could be more concise...something like "came from the candles not yet lit".
2) There's some tense issues in the 4th/5th lines...I think it would be smoother as "They melted because once lit, the flames/did not enlighten but destroy.
3) I don't think you need to repeat destroyed.

Third stanza: not sure I understand the random italics, but it's pretty good aside from that.

The fourth stanza is where your metaphor becomes more obvious. I honestly don't think I would have known that this was supposed to be about Gaza if I hadn't checked the description, but I'm not sure how to make that more clear without making the metaphor really twisted and weird.

I think I get what you're trying to say here--essentially, that the people don't understand why the innocent candles/people are burned along with monstrous ones. However, the wording could be smoother. Unfortunately, it's getting late here and I don't have any awesome suggestions at the moment. :/

Your fifth stanza is on point. It's concise and powerful and the metaphor feels like it fits again.

Overall, I think this is good but the wording could be smoother, especially in the second and fourth stanza. Keep writing! :)

"Who am I? I'm just a writer. I write things down. I walk through your dreams and invent the future."
— Richard Siken