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the world was wider, once: strewn bright
and willing to a fingertip's beckoning, riddled
with roads that spilled in breathless wanders
to otherlands of reverie. i remember

the promise i made a wild changeling child
before i bade her hush and say goodnight --

i've not woken her since: she sleeps and i steal
her spun-glass dreams for my garden
of wilt, ever longing to hold
the ghost-dance that spins by their dying light.





(c)Avallynh on deviantArt, 2012

edit 5/3/12: :icondailylitdeviations: thank you fondly =LadyofGaerdon for the feature: [link]

this is the product
of fifteen horribly introspective minutes,
and it frightens me that i put it to paper at all.

for comments/critique:
:bulletwhite: what do you think the poem is about? -- i'd love to know from a reader's viewpoint just how clearly, if at all, the metaphor conveys the theme.
:bulletwhite: as such, i'd love if you could suggest an alternative for 'wider' in the first line. that's the gist, but it somehow seems like a bland way to put things.
Critique on cosmopolitan for :iconthewrittenrevolution:

my work is copyrighted and is not part of the public domain. please do not copy, print, edit, transmit, archive, reproduce or redistribute this in any manner without my prior written permission.
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:iconunderground-rogue:
Underground-Rogue Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2012  Student Writer
Your poetry has this delicate, beautiful pulse that tugs at all the right cords. Insti-fav.
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:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
thank you thank you. :hug:
Reply
:iconeternalember:
EternalEmber Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2012  Student General Artist
This is the perfect description of growing up. Spun-glass dreams, they shatter so easily.
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
they do, and it's a sad thing.
thank you.
Reply
:iconofonesoul:
OfOneSoul Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
You have a beautiful way with words. Each line seems to flow into the next and the imagery in this piece is still with me. Fantastic writing, a job well done. :clap:

:heart: *OfOneSoul
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:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
thank you so very much. i'm delighted you liked it. :heart:
Reply
:iconofonesoul:
OfOneSoul Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
You are very welcome :hug:
Reply
:iconbrici5:
Brici5 Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2012  Student Writer
as I read this I felt as if I was driving through a "tunnel of time"
I mean, I believe this is about time flowing free from our lives, and the fact that we need to live each day to the maximum, like it is the last one, "carpe diem".

I like your technique and the artistic imagery you've created here. This is a good emotional (in some part) poem. The whole creation is a big metaphor indeed and the thoughts it induced me were of great effect and impact.
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
that's certainly one strain of my musings when i was writing this. there isn't much to be said, i find, for letting go of things. carpe diem indeed.
Reply
:iconfuzzyhoser:
FuzzyHoser Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2012   Writer
Pssst...extra kudos for the DLD. :heart:
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:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
why, thank you. :hug:
Reply
:iconfuzzyhoser:
FuzzyHoser Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2012   Writer
:nod: Of course.
Reply
:iconbeyondjen:
BeyondJen Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Congrats on the DLD! Definitely well deserved. :heart:
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
yours as well, darling. i was quite delighted to see it up there. :heart:
Reply
:iconbeyondjen:
BeyondJen Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks so much, m'dear. :heart:
Reply
:iconbeeswingblue:
beeswingblue Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2012   Writer
Congrats on the well-deserved DLD.
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
thank you so much. :heart:
Reply
:icondailylitdeviations:
DailyLitDeviations Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012
Your wonderful literary work has been chosen to be featured by DLD (Daily Literature Deviations) in a news article that can be found here [link]
Be sure to check out the other artists featured and show your support by :+fav:ing the News Article.

Keep writing and keep creating.
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:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
thank you immensely. :heart:
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2012  Professional Writer
I so deeply love this so I am intensely happy that you put it to paper. I think it's about growing up, and the way the world seems to shrink as it does. Which is why I think you should keep the word "wider". As Azi said, it gives the first stanza an effective sense of simplicity and innocence. The changeling reference is perfect and adds a fantastical element that ties everything together wonderfully. Thank you so much for writing this. :heart:
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
that's exactly what it is about. thank you, Julia, for liking it and keeping it. means more to me even than your words usually do, because this is perhaps the closest my writing has ever come to me.
writing this was a pleasure in retrospect, now when i have your thoughts on it to treasure.:heart:
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Professional Writer
Well it's probably my favorite of yours as well. I instantly connected to it, so I was envisioning the garden of wilt as the one my grandmother kept, that I played in as a child.
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
thank you so, so very much for the DLD. I'm floored, and honoured.
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2012  Professional Writer
You're most welcome. :)
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
i do love that you can relate to it so. my garden, unfortunately, is only allegorical.
Reply
:iconladyofgaerdon:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2012  Professional Writer
Allegorical gardens are good too. :)
Reply
:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
This poem really has a delicacy to it that I quite like :)

For me, the piece has a somewhat straightforward meaning: you made a promise once, to someone (possibly even yourself), which you have been lax in keeping - it is easier to sneak around the promise. I don't feel like I can fully put the meaning into words, because you have done a much better job of wording some of the sensations, particularly with the contrast between your first stanza and your third. But I think I get it.

I don't necessarily think that "wider" is the wrong word for the first line. One, the sound matches the rest of the line very nicely. In addition, I think the word "wider" includes a kind of simplicity that I think is really central to the first stanza, in terms of conveying a sense of innocence, almost. I think choosing a more complex word would perhaps lessen that impact somewhat.

I will confess to being somewhat biased on this piece. I just ADORE little hints of folklore and mythology, so I love the imagery of the changeling child from whom you are stealing treats for your garden. I think you've captured just enough little tidbits of common fairy stories there to really create a rich undertone to the story, one that is just a touch sinister (especially when you think about what the witch did to the family of the man she caught stealing plants from HER garden...).

Overall: lovely. You've made good use of few words to pack the piece with some punch - but a kind of gossamer curtain punch that covers up something more profound. Excellent work :)
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
thank you so very much for your thoughts, Azi. it means so much that you took the time. :hug::
thank you also for that generous crit, i'm humbled you liked the piece.
the changeling child is indeed a reference to my own dreaming wild self of before, and how it's long been locked away and promised false things -- and i only know this now when i've grown up to become something else. and i couldn't resist the tiny mythological reference, really, seeing as it was (i hoped) apt.
:heart:
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:iconazizriandaoxrak:
AzizrianDaoXrak Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:) my pleasure
Reply
:iconbottle-in-the-sea:
bottle-in-the-sea Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
on what the poem is about: to me, it felt like guilt and regret, for one's betrayed dreams by it's one hand. Αnd let downs on what should have been but failed. It's so dreadful when we wake up one day and realise we have betrayed the child in us, all our dreams and expectations.
whether is that or not, it worked perfectly for me, and I really enjoyed the piece, despite its sorrowful theme

nice work :)
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
that's it, yep. :nod:
thank you so so much for taking the time to comment. your thoughts are much appreciated.
Reply
:iconunspecifiedunknown:
UnspecifiedUnknown Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2012   Writer
"i've not woken her since: she sleeps and i steal
her spun-glass dreams for my garden
of wilt, ever longing to hold
the ghost-dance that spins by their dying light."


i think this poem is about coming to terms with your former self- a self
that leaves you with the aches that accompany nostalgia. a self you reflect upon
and draw wisdom from.

you did a beautiful job with this piece- short and
somewhat enigmatic. love it.

:heart:
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Feb 26, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
yes, that's it. :nod:
you've put it, i think, far more eloquently than i did.
thank-you; your thoughts mean so much.
:heart:
Reply
:iconbeyondjen:
BeyondJen Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
This is an unbelievable beautiful result of introspection. I'm just in awe.

For your questions:
This seems to me a reflection of lost childlike whimsy and freedom; the thing that lets children and the innocent see the world in a brighter, more imaginative and hopeful way. And you're looking back realizing it, remembering it, grasping for it, and not able to reproduce it through current eyes.

"The world was wider" --I actually like this. It makes me think we've become narrow-minded with age. Possibilities were endless before the years stacked up.
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
that's it exactly. it used to be easier to dream, once.
i still do it, but it's harder to find that place from where i'm standing now.

thank you for those thoughts; i'm delighted you like it.
Reply
:iconbeyondjen:
BeyondJen Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
You're very welcome. :heart:
Reply
:iconamidnightmasquerade:
aMidnightMasquerade Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2012  Student Writer
This poem, I feel, laments the loss of childhood fantasy and wild-wonder. I also think the use of 'wider' works. It's almost as if you are struggling to find the words to explain those other-times, but once the second line is completed, the old rhythm comes back you.
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:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
thank you. i think that's the comment i was always hoping for on this one. :heart:
Reply
:iconsense-and-stupidity:
sense-and-stupidity Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2012  Student Writer
"spun-glass dreams" lovely. :)
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:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
thank you. :thanks:
Reply
:iconsense-and-stupidity:
sense-and-stupidity Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2012  Student Writer
you're welcome.
Reply
:icontearoses:
TeaRoses Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2012
Without looking at the other comments: I think the poem is about adulthood, and how you never really let go of your childhood and the "changeling" child you were. (And aren't we all convinced we are...) It just lies dormant for later.

Though the world does look different and "wider" then. I... don't mind that word here so much though so I'm not sure what to suggest instead.

I really like this poem and the imagery and the feeling in it, and the way it evokes memories.

Though I may have it all wrong... I still like it!
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
(And aren't we all convinced we are...) -- how true, that!
thank you so much. you've got it right, of course. thank you for your thoughts. :heart:
Reply
:iconlancelotprice:
LancelotPrice Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2012
Honest introspection is horribly scary, but if you do it, it can produce some freedom and beauty. I don't know if you got the freedom of truth for yourself, but it showed some to me, and it's beautiful. Thanks.
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:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
retrospect makes it much easier to look at, and makes me happier to call it my own. so yes, i believe i did. i'm happier, though, that you saw it so. thank you. :heart:
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:iconlancelotprice:
LancelotPrice Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2012
You're very welcome.
Reply
:iconriparii:
riparii Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2012
'The world was wider once' has a lilting music to it,
as does the entire poem.
I wouldn't change it.
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
then i won't, either. thank you.:heart:
Reply
:iconbrittlebits:
brittlebits Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2012
beautiful. to me, it is a poem about innocence not-quite-lost - quashed, perhaps? - and still yearned for. your words are lovely, they make me heartsore.
as for another word for 'wider', i would suggest 'younger' - but that would lose something in subtlety, would it not? you have already used 'bright', or that would have been my first pick.
as it is, though, had you not pinpointed the word as a weakness, it would not have stood out to me as such.
Reply
:iconavallynh:
Avallynh Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
yes. yes, it's just that.
i did consider younger, but it's not quite there, either. ah, i'll keep thinking til it comes to me. i do nitpick: guilty as charged. ^^;
thank you so much for your thoughts. :heart:
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