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Light of Life

by Ryuujin 

Posted: 08 March 2003
Word Count: 161
Summary: The general theme of this poem when i wrote it was how humanity as a whole is never satisfied with happiness

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The light of life is a fickle thing
One moment it is as bright as the sun or more
The next darker the recess of the blackest night

This light that grants salvation to the needy
Courage to the cowardly
Still has the power when gone
To pain us so that its absence blinds us to ourselves

Yet we strive, desire; even fight for this light
Because without it we are worthless
Animals, shells of people

I fear that the light does not enter here anymore
But in the dark contemplation of my soul
I have come to realise it is not the light itself that makes us human
But the absence of it

Never does happiness satisfy the person
It is the struggle to obtain it that makes one whole
So when the reward comes we can not see it for what it truly is

So if I do not strive for the eternal goal
Am I not a person?
Am I less or more of a man?
This is one question I fear shall never be answered....

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Comments by other Members

Agnieszka Ryk at 12:26 on 09 March 2003  Report this post
Hi Ryuujin - welcome to the poetry group!
I like your style of poetry which is quite similar to my own - attempting to discuss profound things in simple language. I think your poem deals with a very heavy topic and makes it accessible. Personally I'd like to see a little more time spent on the final point which is so interesting I think it could be explored further.

I hope you won't mind if I'm bold enough to say you suffer occasionally from the same problem as me - allowing simplicity to slip into banality or cliche. The line 'shells of people' particularly struck me in this way. I think there could be a more precise way of saying this, which would be more personal to you, less of a 'picked up phrase'.

James the group leader has given me some very astute criticisms on my piece 'The Quiet Secret' and pinpointed the weakest lines without fail, but still sounding positive (unfortunately his first comment has been deleted!) - but hopefully he'll be able to do the same for you.

Anyway, perhaps you disagree with what I said - do let me know!

Ryuujin at 13:15 on 09 March 2003  Report this post
I totally agree with you.

I have a habit of writing poems in very short times (the 2 i have posted each took me 5 minutes to write). The main reason for this is i am scared if i put to much time into perfecting a poem it will lose its meaning. I tend to write from the heart and i have a fear that the honesty of the poem will become blurred by over working it.

You have actually picked up on my own biggest critism of my work. I always fear i am writing a cliche.

Thanks for the imput i never expected such a quick response :D

Agnieszka Ryk at 15:40 on 09 March 2003  Report this post
Funnily enough it's been very similar for me. I did have a second go at the Quiet Secret poem, and now a third - it's certainly much harder work to ammend something than to just 'write from the heart' - perhaps we just need to think more carefully when we put the thing down in the first place!

By the way, I think I agree with the sentiment of you poem.

James Graham at 15:32 on 18 March 2003  Report this post
Ryuujin - I'm afraid I'm not quite on your wavelength at the moment. Your poem 'Light of Light' does make 'true' statements, real, genuine statements - especially (for me) 'it is not the light itself that makes us human/But the absence of it' - but I find myself longing for something concrete, to see these as the concluding lines of a poem that describes an actual experience, one that shows the truth of the abstract statement as well as stating it. But I hope other members of the group will come in on this; their responses to your poems might be quite different. Now I look again, I see Agnieszka already has.


Ryuujin at 16:19 on 18 March 2003  Report this post
As a poet i write about feelings and emotions rather then events. I sorta leave it open to the reader to apply there own experiences to the meaning they obtain for the poem. I like to feel that ever reader can feel that the poem relates to a personal experience they have felt.

I can see what you mean but i dont know if i can write about events. I am usually inspired by the emotion invoked by an experience rather then the actually event. This poem was inspired by the ending of a bad relationship but the event doesnt actually fit the context of the poem. This may be down to my imaturity as a writer.


James Graham at 11:06 on 21 March 2003  Report this post
My criticism was more to do with where I'm coming from than where you're coming from. Look forward to more poems from you.


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