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The Last Step

by Shadeflame


the silence
it pounds in my ears
like the rhythm of my heart

the night air is still
the pounding breaking the silence
controlling my body

I am a statue
immovable, solid
without feeling

then, like the breaking
of a dam

all the pain
all the regret
all the disgust
comes flooding back

I look down
over the edge
at the glimmering lights
below

they shimmer like
echoes of what I have been
what I could be

soon, all will be gone from my life
people always move on
no one will remember me
for what I was

an insignificant piece
in the game
people call life

the wind softly caresses my skin
a final goodbye
and so I take my last step....


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9 Reviews


Points: 651
Reviews: 9

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Mon Jun 15, 2020 1:17 pm
anne27 wrote a review...



Hey shadeflame! Im here for a late review. This was a really fascinating poem and brilliant to be the first. The imagery used is interesting and the metaphors like
'the wind softly caresses my skin
a final goodbye'
' game
people call life'

Though familiar were excellently used in the most appropriate places.

The message I get here is that someone is committing a suicide , tired of the inhabitants of this world. Suicide, the way you've described here, is very heartwrenching. And its a pity people dont help those they know have symptoms of depression. It is a wonderful topic youve covered here.

then, like the breaking
of a dam

all the pain
all the regret
all the disgust
comes flooding back
I especially like these lines from the poem. These according to me being the most poetic and realistic. The simile gives it its flavor. However, wouldnt you think it would be nice if you could clarify who was actually the cause of the suicide. Like painful memories of who? Is it family or is it friends. Wouldnt it be better if a line like ' I could hear the screams of my loved ones in the morning, when everything to them would be lost' could give more authenticity. Cause it actually ruins their life. Just a suggestion.

Well, anyway, your poem was a real hit. That sensitive topic does arouse my sympathies.

Keep writing :)




Shadeflame says...


Thank you for reviewing!



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594 Reviews


Points: 1106
Reviews: 594

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Sun May 31, 2020 9:53 am
fortis wrote a review...



Hello!
This is a great first poem/first poem to publish on here :D

I really love the places where you have concrete sensory images, like "it pounds in my ears
like the rhythm of my heart" (That uses both the sense of hearing and feeling which is cool!).

I think my main critique is that I wish there was more! Most of my favorite poems are almost entirely composed concrete images/sensory details. Some of the ones you might consider adding to this poem:

Where is the speaker? I personally imagined them on the top of a building, but they might be on a bridge or cliff or something else. If they are on a building then maybe they could hear gravel crunch as they took a step, or maybe we could get a comment about how uniform the bricks of the building are, or about the echoes of the stairwell, describe the sound of traffic below (or the lack thereof). I know the poem talks about silence, but true silence is very difficult to come by. What about the smells? What about the feelings, like if it's windy (it usually is if you're up high) or if the speaker is nervous and has a twist in their stomach? Having a lot of concrete images really helps to ground your poem and it also invites the reader into the poem.

For example:
"all the pain
all the regret
all the disgust
comes flooding back"

What does this look/sound/feel like? Does the speaker feel coldness pooling in their stomach? Do they clench their hands so hard their fingernails dig into their palm? Does their vision blur the city into an impressionist painting? Does a whine start involuntarilly in their throat? I want to EXPERIENCE this, but I can't when the details are vague and abstract like this.

My second piece of advice to you is to avoid cliches. I know that's easier said than done, but actively working toward it will help you a lot, I promise. I've found that by using mostly concrete details it is much easier to avoid cliches. Abstractions tend to feel very cliche. Some major cliches I noticed in this poem were:

"an insignificant piece
in the game
people call life"

This is some clever wordplay, but unfortunately it's been done so many times that it's very cliche, sorry.

"the wind softly caresses my skin"
now this is an instance of where a concrete image/sensory detail can be cliche! It's a great sensory detail where I as the reader can picture that feeling, but unfortunately this phrase has been used just... so many times. So why not mix it up with something fresh? Something like, "the wind blows like I am a dandelion" or "the wind sails across my skin" or something else.

Finally, what message are you trying to send with this poem? It feels like you're just documenting (what I interpret as) a suicide "poetically" just because it's shocking or poetic. What is the speaker actually feeling? What led them to be in this situation? I would love emotion and meaning and metaphor but I'm just sort of getting a bland "this is what happened and it was painful and bad."

I suggest writing about small things (like bugs in the summer, gum on sidewalks, a shell on a beach) before trying to tackle big things. And then when you're ready for big things, use small things to talk about them! (Use those bugs in the summer as a metaphor for world hunger, the gum as a metaphor for institutionalized discrimination, the shell as a metaphor for loneliness).

Of course, the best advice I ever give anyone is to read a lot of poetry from different authors, time periods, nationalities, etc. etc. Go seek out poetry that YOU like, and then figure out why you like it and what the author does that made you like it. Then try to mimic your favorite strategies! Practice and practice and practice writing and read read read! Becoming a wonderful poet takes time, and you're already taking the hardest steps :D

This thread has a lot of really good poetry in it (by published poets) if you want a broad look at a bunch of really good poems! The Poem of the Week

I hope this review was helpful to you! Keep writing <3
~fortis




Shadeflame says...


Thank you for reviewing my poem! I will definitely take all your advice!



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17 Reviews


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Fri May 22, 2020 11:24 am
potter4life wrote a review...



Hi!I am here for a review!

So firstly,

Do a spell check of the story and focus on the proper spacing and punctuation. Make sure that the beginning of each sentence is capitalised.
And you did not put capital for most of the first sentences.
Like here, you should put capitol letter on
the silence
it pounds in my ears
like the rhythm of my heart

put The silence.

and there were many more so thats a place you should work on.

I hope that this is helpful! Good Job!




Shadeflame says...


Hi potter4life!

Thank you for reviewing my piece! I really appreciate it.
I just wanted to let you know that normally I would capitalize the letters, it's just that this time, I felt the poem was better without it.
I don't know why, I just did. :D



potter4life says...


hahaha:) no prob



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58 Reviews


Points: 36
Reviews: 58

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Fri May 22, 2020 11:18 am
SofieR wrote a review...



Hey Shadeflame!

Sofie here with a review :) I think you write with a really nice, poetic voice. Every line was lyrical and pretty. I especially like the line...

"like the breaking
of a dam

all the pain
all the regret
all the disgust
comes flooding back"

I really love the metaphor of the dam breaking, I have definitely felt like that once or twice. I think most of us have.

The final line was really chilling. I think in this poem you really explore feelings that are so universal, that we all as human beings struggle with. Good work! Keep on writing and working on your craft. :)




Shadeflame says...


Thank you SofieR!

I really appreciate taking time to review my work. I'm actually surprised this one turned out so well, I was just fooling around in the car with my friends and we were writing a bunch of depressing poems. I revised it a bit before putting it on here though, and added a few more lines.




It usually takes more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.
— Mark Twain