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The Attic

by silverquill12


Discarded toys strewn left and right

Too hot in the day and too cold at night

They gaze at old photos, faded with age

Filled with emotion, excitement and rage

Boxes of old books and clothes and such

Send clouds of dust at the slightest of touch

The floor itself, wooden and creaky

And the lighting as well is really quite freaky

No one goes up here, not anymore

These things reflect the days come before

The toys do not speak, do not whisper at all

They are merely small cars and the occasional doll

But if they were to talk, oh the tales they would tell

A child had loved them. Forever they dwelled

On make-believe, dress-up, and races galore

But now playtime’s over, and these days are no more

The photos are simple, all stacked up in piles

Showing ice-cream mouths, bright eyes, and gaps in the smiles

They chronicle time, as the weeks and years pass

‘Cause memories are faulty, and can crack just like glass

No one looks at these pictures, no one reminisces

And so photos are left, like inopportune kisses

The boxes hold things that aren’t used anymore

Small clothes bought for children at a discount store

Books that were read, forgotted, and left

Then up to this prison they all were heft

And here and there, the odd knickknack lingers

Mementos, souvenirs, and some porcelain fingers

All this is stuff that’s broken and worthless

So discarded it stays, cold, dank, and mirthless

The attic is crowded with things to be seen

But no one will gaze, not an adult or teen

All these toys, all the photos, the boxes, the clothes

Will never be seen. This they all know

But they have to try to get people to come

So onto the floorboards they start to drum

Speeding up, faster, the creaks, they increase

When all of a sudden they reach a small peace

The door! It has opened! The light has turned on!

There stands a woman, her eyes and face drawn.

“I thought I heard creaking,” she says with a frown.

“Must have been the house settling, and now it’s calmed down.”

The door starts to creak shut. The toys give a gasp.

But then a child comes running. Her small hands are clasped.

“Oh Mommy, please look! Look at all this stuff!”

She picks up a doll and pats at its fluff.

She stares at the photos with light in her eyes.

She looks through the boxes like they are a prize.

Her mother watches her, curiosity clear

All of this stuff she used to hold dear

She fingers the photos, she looks at the dolls

Wondering how they became stuck in these walls

For all the forgotten she silently grieves

Then gathers it all, picks it up, and leaves.


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19 Reviews


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Sun Mar 22, 2020 8:14 pm
StudentAH wrote a review...



What the-- whoah.

I absolutely loved this poem. And the description was totally accurate too: It most certainly brightened my day, and it was melancholy too but blissful as well!

I love toys and stuff, so this really invested me at the beginning. It almost reminded me of those toy shops you'd see in the I Spy books.

I loved the personification of the toys and stuff -- how they drummed and wanted a visitor, when really it was the house creaking (or was it?). The ending really got me, I felt a pretty deep pang of sadness.

I almost wanted this poem to be more whimsical -- I imaged that instead, a stranger might have bought the house and marvels at the stories that the photos and toys told. I thought the story was going that way.

But instead it took a different turn! My guess is that the family is moving? That is why she gathered all the stuff and leaves. It kind of shows that the memories are preserved, but at the same time they're leaving the house so at the same time, the "story" the toys are trying to tell really is over. That last line just dismissed everything, almost, rather than the typical forgotten toys story where they'd find a new home and a new family to share their tale with.

My only gripe was around the middle where the world "seen" was repeated. A silly gripe, I know, but I just felt like that part was reiterated. Nothing wrong with using words twice, it just felt too close for me, I guess.

Overall, I loved it! The mood this poem gave, just wow. I really was temporarily filled with wonder.






Thank you so much for your feedback! I enjoy seeing what others think. To clarify on your point about the seen being repeated: I hadn't noticed it, because in the original format for this poem they were in two separate stanzas. However, I couldn't figure out how to make stanzas in this new format, as I am a very new member and am still learning the ropes. Thank you for calling that to my attention; I totally see what you mean. I find I do that a lot with my writing, especially when I go away and then come back and finish it. Thanks again!



StudentAH says...


Don't worry too much about it, sometimes I have flaws in my poems too but I leave 'em because at the end of the day, its subjective and no one will ever 100% be satisfied with anything. Your poem was an absolute joy and I wish more could see it.



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Sun Mar 22, 2020 8:44 am
BhavyaMehta123 wrote a review...



Hi@silverquill12. This is such a heart touching poem. I love old things their smell, the memories they arouse is the best feeling in the world. Although, I feel nostalgic sometimes and tears roll out. This is a beautiful work telling how we forget those old books,toys,clothes etc and memories behind them. I also loved how you wrote it in form of poem cum story.The story of mother and daughter developing.
The rhyming is on the point. I too liked the vocabulary used here. Also, my ultimate favorite lines from the poem are:" Cause memories are faulty....." This is a stand and line and I can not help reading it again and again and my next absolute favorite line is ,
'' The attic is crowded to be seen
But no one will gaze, not an adult or teen"
Thank you for sharing such a beautiful poem. You have truly justified it. Also, a warm welcome to YWS. What a start! with such a nice poem.
From:Bhavya.




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Sat Mar 21, 2020 1:20 pm
Leviari wrote a review...



Hi! Congratulations on your writing, this is such a nice poem!

Personally, this was my favorite part:

"They chronicle time, as the weeks and years pass

‘Cause memories are faulty, and can crack just like glass

No one looks at these pictures, no one reminisces

And so photos are left, like inopportune kisses "

You caught my attention from the very beginning and skillfully crafted a melodious tone thanks to your fluent rhymes. Despite being quite long, the poem rolls from the tongue very easily.

Another aspect that I appreciated was how your descriptions jump from being playful to sombre. There's lightness when you talk about toys and children, but also a lingering sadness for all the forgotten memories.

Your last few lines are outstanding!

Well done, and thank you for sharing. :)




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Sat Mar 21, 2020 1:18 pm
Lia5Giba wrote a review...



Hello! This is a good piece! The feeling I get with it, especially the last 4 lines. It is truly beautiful.

The only real complaint I have against this is that some rhymes feel a little forced. Also, the lines:

"But if they were to talk, oh the tales they would tell

A child had loved them. Forever they dwelled

Make-believe, dress-up, and races galore"

That second line... you might want to put punctuation next to it. Otherwise it reads, "A child had loved them. Forever they dwelled Make believe, dress-up, sand races galore." I understand that each line ends this way, but for some reason this one feels a little choppy to me. What does "Forever they dwelled" refer to? The stories? Is it possible you could clarify that for me? Because I'm pretty sure I'm just dumb.

Otherwise... this is a really cool, pretty piece. I know that sounds kind of insincere, but I swear, I am trying to be anything but. I like this poem a lot: it is haunting a little and so beautiful, and I bet it's something most people can relate to, too. Keep my suggestions, or don't. I think either way, this poem will still be good.






Sorry I didn't get back to you sooner. Forever they dwelled refers to the games. Perhaps I should add an 'on' before make believe.



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Sat Mar 21, 2020 3:16 am
PrincessInk wrote a review...



welcome to YWS silverquill! I like your avatar! It's so pretty!

Also, btw, I'm a retired mod and all but if you have questions I can always answer them ;) Anyway. On with the review.

I'm really fond of the feeling here and how you portrayed it. The nostalgic sadness of leaving behind old playthings as people grow up and live different lives. I think it reminds me of the Velveteen Rabbit story a little, of how toys become 'real' when they are loved dearly. Though of course this is different.

The rhyme here is particularly nice. It makes the poem feel old-fashioned and I think it's an excellent stylistic choice. Also the rhyming is generally smooth and unforced and I like that (my old rhyming poems were very stiff and we don't talk about them :p) A suggestion is to add a meter to them, maybe iambic? Not sure.

Send clouds of dust at the slightest of touch


Just a typo - I assume you mean "slightest touch". I just pointed it out because it confused me a minute :P

And the lighting as well is really quite freaky


I know the tone here is less informal so maybe you might want to change "freaky" to something else - I know it was for the sake of rhyme, but given your other rhymes I'm sure you can come up with better! :)

Then up to this prison they all were heft


It gets a little awkward for Rhyme. Rhyming is so hard. I relate ;)

One last critique: I must say my least favorite part was the part where they were gathering dust. I think you might want to refine it to match up with the quality in the other parts. The rhymes weren't as good and maybe the flow/wording got a little clunky so I would suggest some polishing.

Other than that, though, (and I know I kind of ripped your poem up, sorry :( ) I really really enjoyed it. I had a personal connection to it and I definitely liked your classic-style execution of the ideas. I would really love to see you polish this one and write more poems!

~Ink




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Sat Mar 21, 2020 2:25 am
Lim June says...



Great poem silverquil12! I really like how this poem has rhymths and wonderful describions.

>Keep on writing!

Lim June





A diamond is merely a lump of coal that did well under pressure.
— Unknown