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Why I hate the past tense.

by retrodisco666

The past tense is

the brutal rupture from

the present.

That defining break

which stops something

from existing in the same way again.

The past tense is admitting that

something happened..


The past tense is asking

"Was this your sister?"

Now whether that is a friend

passing a photo frame

or the coroner in the morgue

those words still ring out

in the definitive past tense.

That was saying she no longer exists.


The past tense is getting a phone call at

3 in the morning saying your sister


in a car accident.

The past tense is getting to the hospital

at 11 after traveling through the early morning

to hear some doctor in a white coat tell me she

did not

make it through the night.

The past tense is hearing my mother

saying that she


a beautiful girl.

That she was my sister.


I was the one who identified the body.

Rachel. Her hair was as red

as the day she was born.

Her freckles were as wild

and frantic as ever.

Her lips were pale as

snow and I'm sure she

was just as cold to touch.


The past tense is the radical

break with the present.

It is the admitting that

she was beautiful.

It has been a year now

but still I can hear that phone ring.

To have to walk out into that white hall,

and break down on my knees as

she was dead.

The past tense is the radical

break with the present.

The past tense is

her funeral.

her death.


Her life.

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51 Reviews

Points: 10
Reviews: 51

Fri Apr 25, 2014 8:49 am
LordGreenleaf wrote a review...

LGF here to review your poem;

Wow, another beautiful poem. You really are talented.

It was touching and bitter, and I loved how you had no idea at the start about what had happened to make you hate past tenses. It flowed really well and you used some neat imagery.

Some nitpicks;

which stops something

from existing in the same way again.

I think you can rephrase existing because as @dreamingofwonderland said, it feels awkward and clunky when you stop to read it.

her death.

This could be on purpose, but capitalize 'her'.

Overall another brilliant poem that dealt with some serious themes. You pulled it off really well with some great imagery;


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55 Reviews

Points: 684
Reviews: 55

Thu Apr 24, 2014 10:30 pm
Percybeth says...

I was just about on the verge of crying. This is heart touching and soul wrenching and I love it.

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22 Reviews

Points: 693
Reviews: 22

Wed Apr 23, 2014 1:47 am
CarsonTheArson says...

So many emotions! Time for a feel trip...

You are a brilliant writer, and I have loved all of your works. Never stop writing!!

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270 Reviews

Points: 5081
Reviews: 270

Tue Apr 22, 2014 11:44 pm

No. nononononononononononononono.

*runs away from the emotions in this poem*

That is to say--it's a good one.

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13 Reviews

Points: 736
Reviews: 13

Tue Apr 22, 2014 10:42 pm
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dreamingofwonderland wrote a review...

Alice here to review your poem! First off, let me just say, wow. This is a beautiful poem and I didn't find many corrections. I love how it explains everything so clearly. It made me sad honestly because of how detailed it is.
Brutual should be Brutal.
"That defining break

which stops something

from exisiting in the same way again. "

First, it should be existing. The wording seems awkward here because of the "in the same way again" part. The part that makes it awkward is that if something is still existing it wouldn't quite be in the past. Maybe its just me but I thought it was a little awkward.
In the second stanza there is the line: "in the a definitive past tense."
Either "a definitive part tense" or "the definitive past tense"
Stanza 5: "and break down on me knees as"
My knees
Finally in the last stanza, "The past tense is her funeral. her death. "
Capitalize "her" in "Her death"

Hope I helped! This is a great poem! <3

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254 Reviews

Points: 11396
Reviews: 254

Tue Apr 22, 2014 10:36 pm
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Sonder wrote a review...

Hi, retro.
This is a beautiful poem, and very personal, I'm sure. You are extremely talented, I see you featured nearly every day. This topic struck close to my heart, as it did to many others, because when you hear "was", all you want to do is scream and take it back when it happens to be about a loved one. The imagery was gorgeous, the topic is one that we can all relate to, but you managed to capture, and the only grammatical points I spotted were when you said "me" instead of "my" but a quick reread can fix that. It didn't take away from the experience of this one bit.
Thank you for sharing this.

Keep writing and being amazing.


A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing.
— Oscar Wilde