#1
I wrote this OTS last night; I was inspired, and I like the content, but I hate the presentation and wording. Help me out?

C4C, leave a link!

[font="Book Antiqua"]After she left, I sat there staring into space,
until a little toy soldier caught my eye.
Standing under the christmas tree, he was clearly lost,
yet not a single grimace of confusion crossed his face.
I stared into those big, blue, insouciant eyes,
and saw nothing;
not a single grain of happiness,
not a glimpse of hope,
not a drop of love.

Empty.

There were no memories of his first kiss
under the moonlit summer's night;
or watching the snow gently fall upon
the pond down by the valley;
no recollection of the sudden realisation -
what it means to love,
as the cherry blossom, lifted by the wind,
playfully danced to nature's rhythm.
 
But the eyes were beautiful, honest eyes
and I soon realised he felt no pain:
there was no sorrow, from the memory of his grandparents' death
at the tender age of five;
no misery, from knowing he could have saved the drowning child
and if he'd have stayed calm, perhaps they both could have made it.
no guilt, looking back on the holocaust of joy, a result of the 
parasitic words he'd breathed.

And it struck me;
This is what it means to be [I]free[/I].

To be able to have red stains on your shirt,
([I]is that blood?![/I])
and know it's the spilt sherry she threw;
To be able to leave behind all company
([I]Dog 4, come in Dog 4, do you copy?[/I])
and not take a single, cautious look over your shoulder;
To be able to carry a rifle all your life
([I]you feelin' lucky, punk?[/I])
and have it never occur to you that you can use it;
To never have the disease that is consciousness
([I]I think, theref-[/I])
stain a single sewn patch of existence.

I slowly walked over to the soldier
and carefully examined him.
I had no idea how he'd got there,
as he wasn't one of the many unopened presents,
staring at me accusingly,
piercing my mask.
He uttered not a single cry of protest when I lifted him;
not a
single
****ing
squeak.
"Made in Vietnam" carved into his back -
I guess Charlie craved the secrets to his joy as well,
but even that wouldn't pry open that
god-damn mouth of his, just as carefree
as it always had been.


And still those big, bold, beautiful eyes watched me.
They foretold, judged and triumphed over my every movevement,
and I'll be damned if God himself wouldn't have been jealous
of those eyes.
I always mocked those who likened eyes to anything other than light sensors,
but these eyes were electric,
a torrent of life,
and I was nothing more than debris, the collateral damage of a storm,
lost, helpless, trapped,
a l i v e.

Empty?

Those eyes were a vortex of
long, thick, powerful strands,
something far superior to matter,
powerful energy writhing,
entwined around the vehement whirpool
of a reality envied by time itself.
Even the cold, harsh reality that had been the radio began to
cough,
choke,
[I]wilt[/I],
a distant reminder of yet more past sins.

I carefully observed the little toy solider,
standing 'neath the Christmas tree.
And I cried.[/FONT]
Last edited by michal23 at Mar 3, 2009,
#3
The separated words in parenthesis in the fourth stanza kinda kill the mood, I had to re-read that part without looking at them to really get the mood from it

umm.... actually, that's all im gonna say for now,
ima take another look at this later and finish critting it....

just let me say for now that it was pretty damn good,
I just wanna take the time to really get into it before I go through and start picking it apart
#4
Quote by michal23
I wrote this OTS last night; I was inspired, and I like the content, but I hate the presentation and wording. Help me out?

C4C, leave a link!

After she left, I sat there staring into space,
until a little toy soldier caught my eye.
Standing under the christmas tree, he was clearly lost,
yet not a single grimace of confusion crossed his face.
I stared into those big, blue, insouciant eyes,
heh, did you use insouciant after you saw it in leaflets? not a very common word.
and saw nothing;
not a single grain of happiness,
not a glimpse of hope,
not a drop of love.

Empty.

I like the intro, the contrast between human emotion and a lifeless doll. Good Start.

There were no memories of his first kiss
under the moonlit summer's night;
or watching the snow gently fall upon
the pond down by the valley;
no recollection of the sudden realisation -
what it means to love,
as the cherry blossom, lifted by the wind,
playfully danced to nature's rhythm.

But the eyes were beautiful, honest eyes
and I soon realised he felt no pain:
there was no sorrow, from the memory of his grandparents' death
at the tender age of five;
no misery, from knowing he could have saved the drowning child
and if he'd have stayed calm, perhaps they both could have made it.
no guilt, looking back on the holocaust of joy, a result of the
parasitic words he'd breathed.

These next two above, contrasting the bad and good about not being able to feel anything. i like em both

And it struck me;
This is what it means to be free.

To be able to have red stains on your shirt,
(is that blood?!)
and know it's the spilt sherry she threw;
To be able to leave behind all company
(Dog 4, come in Dog 4, do you copy?)
and not take a single, cautious look over your shoulder;
To be able to carry a rifle all your life
(you feelin' lucky, punk?)
and have it never occur to you that you can use it;
To never have the disease that is consciousness
(I think, theref-)
stain a single sewn patch of existence.

I don't know if the parts set off by parentheses are really adequate here, they sort of interrupt the flow. The concept is good, but the problem is they don't follow the action of the stanza, they sort of take the attention off the main story since they are more accessories (for lack of a better word).

I slowly walked over to the soldier
and carefully examined him.
I had no idea how he'd got there,
as he wasn't one of the many unopened presents,
staring at me accusingly,
piercing my mask.
He uttered not a single cry of protest when I lifted him;
not a
single
****ing
squeak.
"Made in Vietnam" carved into his back -
I guess Charlie craved the secrets to his joy as well,
but even that wouldn't pry open that
god-damn mouth of his, just as carefree
as it always had been.

There seems to be some resentment by the main character of the toy soldier, was this your intent? if so i think it is presented nicely.

And still those big, bold, beautiful eyes watched me.
They foretold, judged and triumphed over my every movevement,
and I'll be damned if God himself wouldn't have been jealous
of those eyes.
I always mocked those who likened eyes to anything other than light sensors,
but these eyes were electric,
a torrent of life,
and I was nothing more than debris, the collateral damage of a storm,
lost, helpless, trapped,
a l i v e.

Empty?

Those eyes were a vortex of
long, thick, powerful strands,
something far superior to matter,
powerful energy writhing,
entwined around the vehement whirpool
of a reality envied by time itself.
Even the cold, harsh reality that had been the radio began to
cough,
choke,
wilt,
a distant reminder of yet more past sins.

I carefully observed the little toy solider,
standing 'neath the Christmas tree.
And I cried.


Overall, i also like the content; however, i don't know how exactly you want it presented. as it is, it seems like the main idea of the poem is the relationship between the character and the doll as i outlined after the first stanza. There seems to be some anger, and even jealousy, by the MC because the solider is emotionless, and if this was your aim, then it is actually presented fairly well.

My main vice was with the parenthetical comments in stanza 4, which don't really follow the action of that stanza (at least, not from how i read it). They are a good concept, but interrupt the flow a little too much.



-DTH
#5
I'm sorry I haven't got back to this yet, i've been tied up lately. Hoipefully I'll get to it this arvo
#6
Quote by michal23

After she left, I sat there staring into space,
until a little toy soldier caught my eye. This is worded really badly and that's disappointing because this has the potential to be fantastic.
Standing under the christmas tree, he was clearly lost,
yet not a single grimace of confusion crossed his face.
I stared into those big, blue, insouciant eyes, "insouciant" is far too wordy for this
and saw nothing;
not a single grain of happiness,
not a glimpse of hope,
not a drop of love. ending is stronger than the beginning, but i'm still not getting into it yet

Empty.

There were no memories of his first kiss
under the moonlit summer's night;
or watching the snow gently fall upon
the pond down by the valley;
no recollection of the sudden realisation -
what it means to love,
as the cherry blossom, lifted by the wind,
playfully danced to nature's rhythm.

the last two lines are the only part of this i don't like, the first seven are strong and well written

But the eyes were beautiful, honest eyes
and I soon realised he felt no pain:
there was no sorrow, from the memory of his grandparents' death
at the tender age of five;
no misery, from knowing he could have saved the drowning child
and if he'd have stayed calm, perhaps they both could have made it. these two lines are a bit out of place, the first idea is easy to connect with, but this is just a bit too personal. Who is this child? Why was he drowning? Why were you there? Why didn't you save him? Too many questions are raised
no guilt, looking back on the holocaust of joy, a result of the
parasitic words he'd breathed. wordy wordy wordy wordy. Not working

And it struck me;
This is what it means to be free. hmm, not sure about the italics here.

To be able to have red stains on your shirt,
(is that blood?!)
and know it's the spilt sherry she threw;
To be able to leave behind all company
(Dog 4, come in Dog 4, do you copy?)
and not take a single, cautious look over your shoulder;
To be able to carry a rifle all your life
(you feelin' lucky, punk?)
and have it never occur to you that you can use it;
To never have the disease that is consciousness
(I think, theref-)
stain a single sewn patch of existence.

this is the best stanza so far, shwos a wonderful spark of personality and creates a strong image and storyline.

I slowly walked over to the soldier
and carefully examined him.
I had no idea how he'd got there,
as he wasn't one of the many unopened presents,
staring at me accusingly,
piercing my mask. I don't know about these four lines, especially "piercing my mask". What mask?
He uttered not a single cry of protest when I lifted him;
not a
single
****ing throw some empty bold-italics tags to fix up swearing here.
squeak.
"Made in Vietnam" carved into his back -
I guess Charlie craved the secrets to his joy as well,
but even that wouldn't pry open that
god-damn mouth of his, just as carefree
as it always had been.
this stanza is rather confusing towards the end and feels very much like filler

And still those big, bold, beautiful eyes watched me.
They foretold, judged and triumphed over my every movevement,
and I'll be damned if God himself wouldn't have been jealous
of those eyes.
I always mocked those who likened eyes to anything other than light sensors,
but these eyes were electric,
a torrent of life,
and I was nothing more than debris, the collateral damage of a storm,
lost, helpless, trapped,
a l i v e. no complaints here.

Empty?

Those eyes were a vortex of
long, thick, powerful strands,
something far superior to matter,
powerful energy writhing,
entwined around the vehement whirpool
of a reality envied by time itself.
Even the cold, harsh reality that had been the radio began to
cough,
choke,
wilt,
a distant reminder of yet more past sins.

I carefully observed the little toy solider,
standing 'neath the Christmas tree.
And I cried.


This really is rather good, but it needs some work, beautifying, fixing up etc. I tried to be as nitpicky as possible, hopefully you can find something useful. Sorry it took so long to get to this
#7
alright let's get to this. I will get picky because there's something holding this back, and I want to put a finger on it.
Quote by michal23
I wrote this OTS last night; I was inspired, and I like the content, but I hate the presentation and wording. Help me out?

C4C, leave a link!

[font="Book Antiqua"]After she left, I sat there staring into space,
until a little toy soldier caught my eye.
Standing under the christmas tree, he was clearly lost,
yet not a single grimace of confusion crossed his face.
I stared into those big, blue, insouciant eyes,
and saw nothing;
not a single grain of happiness,
not a glimpse of hope,
not a drop of love.

Empty.

[color="DarkRed"]first thing first ; setting. your first couplet really induced vagueness.
It was good in the sense that right away the reader can start and get his imagination
going. but then came "under the [B]C[/B]hristmas tree". It's really not the kind of
element I expected to see backing up "staring in space". Right away I was unsettled and
had to start over. "grimace of confusion" felt wordy and a little bit over the top to me.
and then the whole description felt un-necessary to me. Perhaps because you spend
that whole stanza trying to describe in a very precise manner, well...nothingness. I get
what you were going for, but it really didn't work that much for me. I would chop this
down a bit. from 10 lines to, maybe, 5-6. max. I hope you understand what I mean.

[/COLOR]
There were no memories of his first kiss
under the moonlit summer's night;
or watching the snow gently fall upon
the pond down by the valley;
no recollection of the sudden realisation -
what it means to love,
as the cherry blossom, lifted by the wind,
playfully danced to nature's rhythm.
[color="DarkRed"]I'd change L2 to "under [U]a[/U] moonlit[...]" here. Since it didn't
actually happen, it can't be as precise as "the" summer night. Again, you spent a whole
stanza describing something that hasn't actually happened. Especially in such a lengthy
piece, you have to get going earlier than that, because if I wouldn't be willing to critique
this, you would have lost me already. [/COLOR]

But the eyes were beautiful, honest eyes
and I soon realised he felt no pain:
there was no sorrow, from the memory of his grandparents' death
at the tender age of five;
no misery, from knowing he could have saved the drowning child
and if he'd have stayed calm, perhaps they both could have made it.
no guilt, looking back on the holocaust of joy, a result of the
parasitic words he'd breathed.
[color="DarkRed"]woaah. Time machine and s[size="2"]h[/SIZE]it. At least get it written
as "but his eyes were", because "the eyes" here get really confusing. Remember, last
stanza you were talking about first kiss and love and snow down the valley. You can't
just go back on what you were talking on the second to last stanza without any kind of
link and relativity.

on the stanza itself now ; I hated it. it shows when you started writing this that you had
absolutely no idea where you get going and it's annoying. You're wasting my time here.
Last time you described the "toy"'s eyes, they were insouciant. And now, without any
event provoking that, you suddenly realize that they are beautiful and "that he felt no
pain"? Your narrator here has issues. You introduce him around a christmas tree, now
how does he get into the other character's mind all that easily?
Also, you have a terrible change in tone with "holocaust of joy" and "parasitic words he'd
breathed". This isn't bad writing by any means, but it just doesn't fit in what you have
going so far. Like, oh s[size="2"]h[/SIZE]it, I got three stanzas down and I didn't go on
with beautiful imagery and what not yet. [/COLOR]

And it struck me;
This is what it means to be [I]free[/I].
[color="DarkRed"]Good. Wait. What? OK I get it; is the narrator autistic? no? So let me
see. He stares into his room, christmas tree and s[size="2"]h[/SIZE]it, catches the eye
of a toy, realizes that he didn't live so many things and didn't have feelings and that
well, no s[size="2"]h[/SIZE]it sherlock, it's a toy! and then it strucks him ; this is what
it's like to be free! I get it, it's just, it took you thirty lines to get there! To me, this is a
setting. An introduction, something that leads to something else. Not something worth
developing three stanzas about. [/COLOR]

To be able to have red stains on your shirt,
([I]is that blood?![/I])
and know it's the spilt sherry she threw;
To be able to leave behind all company
([I]Dog 4, come in Dog 4, do you copy?[/I])
and not take a single, cautious look over your shoulder;
To be able to carry a rifle all your life
([I]you feelin' lucky, punk?[/I])
and have it never occur to you that you can use it;
To never have the disease that is consciousness
([I]I think, theref-[/I])
stain a single sewn patch of existence.
[color="DarkRed"]This is great writing. I mean it. The problem is ; humongous tone
shift. You lose the narrator. You lose the initial setting. You lose the developing plot. This
is another piece of writing to me. [/COLOR]

I slowly walked over to the soldier
and carefully examined him.
I had no idea how he'd got there,
as he wasn't one of the many unopened presents,
staring at me accusingly,
piercing my mask.
He uttered not a single cry of protest when I lifted him;
not a
single
****ing
squeak.
"Made in Vietnam" carved into his back -
I guess Charlie craved the secrets to his joy as well,
but even that wouldn't pry open that
god-damn mouth of his, just as carefree
as it always had been.

[color="DarkRed"]OKAY. Back to the soldier. See, this is stanza #2 to me. You
contribute to the plot. This is not meaningless babbling. You're telling a story here,
great. You stick with the narrator, the character, it's believable. You reference to many
things outside the actual writing, but I can't blame you on that. I will just mention that
it's one of the many factors, like the others that I pointed out, that spills confusion all
over this piece. If It was only that it'd be fine so yeah. I liked that stanza. [/COLOR]

And still those big, bold, beautiful eyes watched me.
They foretold, judged and triumphed over my every movevement,
and I'll be damned if God himself wouldn't have been jealous
of those eyes.
I always mocked those who likened eyes to anything other than light sensors,
but these eyes were electric,
a torrent of life,
and I was nothing more than debris, the collateral damage of a storm,
lost, helpless, trapped,
a l i v e.

[color="DarkRed"]Empty?
big bold beautiful eyes ? You already used beautiful. The description here is repetitive
and, well,
empty. mo[B]veve[/B]ment? Now the plot develops in a very unrealistic fashion. What
actually happened to make those eyes from empty to a l i v e ? This is going nowhere.
Running circles. [/COLOR]

Those eyes were a vortex of
long, thick, powerful strands,
something far superior to matter,
powerful energy writhing,
entwined around the vehement whirpool
of a reality envied by time itself.
Even the cold, harsh reality that had been the radio began to
cough,
choke,
[I]wilt[/I],
a distant reminder of yet more past sins.

I carefully observed the little toy solider,
standing 'neath the Christmas tree.
And I cried.
[color="DarkRed"]
oh please. Alright, I've had enough.[/COLOR][/FONT]


This piece is going nowhere. no-where. Much like the eyes of your toy soldier, it was empty. The plot is broken and skipped. Your narrator is not believable. Your character changes personalities even though it doesn't have any.

get a hold of what you want to say. What did you want to convey? Let me get this clear ; you do appear to have a lot of talent with words. There are many problems in your execution but they all come from the lack of preparation. I understand this is OTS but it's not a justification. you can't write a piece without having a single idea of what you're going to say. Well, no, wait, you can, but it needs an awful amount of experience and talent.

I will keep an eye out for you, because I think I could definitely enjoy something of yours, when you actually have something to say.

I know I've been harsh, sorry.
Last edited by circular.parade at Mar 5, 2009,
#8
Thanks for all the crits guys. And circular.parade, harsh crits are good - I don't want to be told "omg this is amzing nao crit mine!", so thanks!

Although this is no justification, I think that although everything in here makes perfect sense to me, I need to rewrite parts so that it makes sense to others.

Which will be pretty damn hard

What I was trying to get across was the envy felt by the narrator, and was hoping to show how much more the toy appears to him through the long, wordy descriptions; I guess it didn't work out.

Thanks again for all your crits guys, they're really appreciated!
Last edited by michal23 at Mar 5, 2009,
#9

[color="indigo"]This first stanza is so agreeable.
I don't know if it was intentional or if its just how I am reading it,
but it somewhat reads like a christmas carol type thing.
You know "It was a night before christmas, and all through the yadayada".
either way great stanza. [/color]
Empty.

There were no memories of his first kiss
under the moonlit summer's night;
or watching the snow gently fall upon
the pond down by the valley;[color="indigo"]I'm iffy on 'valley'[/color]
no recollection of the sudden reali[b][u]z[/b][/u]ation -
what it means to love,
as the cherry blossom, lifted by the wind,
playfully danced to nature's rhythm.
[color="indigo"]Last two lines i did not like[/color]
But the eyes were beautiful, honest eyes
and I soon realised he felt no pain:
there was no sorrow, from the memory of his grandparents' death
at the tender age of five;
no misery, from knowing he could have saved the drowning child
and if he'd have stayed calm, perhaps they both could have made it.
no guilt, looking back on the holocaust of joy, a result of the
parasitic words he'd breathed.
[color="indigo"]awesome.[/color]
And it struck me;
This is what it means to be [I]free[/I].
[color="indigo"]The bold, standout line of the piece. I like it[/color]
To be able to have red stains on your shirt,
([I]is that blood?![/I])
and know it's the spilt sherry she threw;
To be able to leave behind all company
([I]Dog 4, come in Dog 4, do you copy?[/I])
and not take a single, cautious look over your shoulder;
To be able to carry a rifle all your life
([I]you feelin' lucky, punk?[/I])
and have it never occur to you that you can use it;
To never have the disease that is consciousness
([I]I think, theref-[/I])
stain a single sewn patch of existence.
[color="indigo"]Intense build up, I've never been a fan of parenthesis in pieces, but this worked wonderfully[/color]
I slowly walked over to the soldier
and carefully examined him.
I had no idea how he'd got there,
as he wasn't one of the many unopened presents,
staring at me accusingly,
piercing my mask.
He uttered not a single cry of protest when I lifted him;
not a
single
****ing
squeak.
"Made in Vietnam" carved into his back -
I guess Charlie craved the secrets to his joy as well,
but even that wouldn't pry open that
god-damn mouth of his, just as carefree
as it always had been.
[color="indigo"]Good, didn't stand out much but it wasn't out of place[/color]

And still those big, bold, beautiful eyes watched me.
They foretold, judged and triumphed over my every [b][u]movement[/b][/u],
and I'll be damned if God himself wouldn't have been jealous
of those eyes.
I always mocked those who likened eyes to anything other than light sensors,
but these eyes were electric,
a torrent of life,
and I was nothing more than debris, the collateral damage of a storm,
lost, helpless, trapped,
a l i v e.
[color="indigo"]Eyes can be a beautiful thing, and you used them perfectly right here[/color]
Empty?

Those eyes were a vortex of
long, thick, powerful strands,
something far superior to matter,
powerful energy writhing,
entwined around the vehement [b][u]whirlpool[/b][/u]
of a reality envied by time itself.
Even the cold, harsh reality that had been the radio began to
cough,
choke,
[I]wilt[/I],
a distant reminder of yet more past sins.

I carefully observed the little toy solider,
standing 'neath the Christmas tree.
And I cried.[/FONT]

This piece was great. Had very few hiccups
anything bold,underlined was just a spelling mistake that you missed.
&thanks for the crit on my piece.
this one is for you.
#10
Quote by michal23

After she left, I sat there staring into space,
until a little toy soldier caught my eye.
Standing under the christmas tree, he was clearly lost,
yet not a single grimace of confusion crossed his face.
I stared into those big, blue, insouciant eyes,
I don't think insouciant really fits with such basic words as big and blue.
and saw nothing;
not a single grain of happiness,
not a glimpse of hope,
not a drop of love.
I like these four lines, man

Empty.
And that.

There were no memories of his first kiss
under the moonlit summer's night;
or watching the snow gently fall upon
the pond down by the valley;
no recollection of the sudden realisation -
what it means to love,
as the cherry blossom, lifted by the wind,
playfully danced to nature's rhythm.
I really liked these two lines, although I think 'danced playfully' would fit better.



Apologies, I'm not really good at critiquing. I just figured I would attempt it for doing mine

And I'm not too good at comprehension, so I got lost after where I commented to.

I liked it as a piece though man. You're good.
-

Last edited by Aléx at Mar 8, 2009,
#11
He hung a black dot on his wall. He would wake up every morning and when he saw it, he cried.
#12
Hey, just wanted to say thanks for the in-depth critique you gave me on my piece. Here I go, hopefully returning the favor:

After she left, I sat there staring into space,
until a little toy soldier caught my eye.
Standing under the christmas tree, he was clearly lost,
yet not a single grimace of confusion crossed his face.
I stared into those big, blue, insouciant eyes,
and saw nothing;
not a single grain of happiness,
not a glimpse of hope,
not a drop of love.

Empty.

I thought this was an effective opening stanza. I don't know what "insouciant" means, but perhaps I'll look it up when I'm done with this. I liked your characterization of the toy soldier. I can clearly see an image in my head of this. I didn't like have all of those "not a" lines at the end. I just thought the repetition didn't further your cause. But that's just my opinion. I also was a fan of you setting "empty" apart from the rest.

There were no memories of his first kiss
under the moonlit summer's night;

I like this thought, but after seeing the first stanza I don't think you verbalized it as well as I know you can.

or watching the snow gently fall upon
the pond down by the valley;
no recollection of the sudden realisation -
what it means to love,
as the cherry blossom, lifted by the wind,
playfully danced to nature's rhythm.

I really liked the inclusion of "nature's rhythm"

But the eyes were beautiful, honest eyes
and I soon realised he felt no pain:
there was no sorrow, from the memory of his grandparents' death
at the tender age of five;

I like the turning point here. You in the poem are having your own "sudden realization," which is cool. I'd definitely consider removing the comma in L3 as it stops the flow prematurely

no misery, from knowing he could have saved the drowning child
and if he'd have stayed calm, perhaps they both could have made it.

Great imagery here. I much prefer it to the sorrows about the grandfather. To me it's some of the best lines of the piece. I would consider changing "he'd have stayed" to just "if he stayed" because the former is cluttered and feels clumsy. But I really like what you were saying here.

no guilt, looking back on the holocaust of joy, a result of the
parasitic words he'd breathed.

And it struck me;
This is what it means to be free.

To be able to have red stains on your shirt,
(is that blood?!)
and know it's the spilt sherry she threw;
To be able to leave behind all company
(Dog 4, come in Dog 4, do you copy?)
and not take a single, cautious look over your shoulder;
To be able to carry a rifle all your life
(you feelin' lucky, punk?)
and have it never occur to you that you can use it;
To never have the disease that is consciousness
(I think, theref-)
stain a single sewn patch of existence.

I didn't like the parentheses in this case. I think they can be effective in some cases but I didn't like them as much here.

I slowly walked over to the soldier
and carefully examined him.
I had no idea how he'd got there,
as he wasn't one of the many unopened presents,
staring at me accusingly,
piercing my mask.
He uttered not a single cry of protest when I lifted him;
not a
single
****ing
squeak.
"Made in Vietnam" carved into his back -
I guess Charlie craved the secrets to his joy as well,
but even that wouldn't pry open that
god-damn mouth of his, just as carefree
as it always had been.

I really liked the last three lines here.

And still those big, bold, beautiful eyes watched me.
They foretold, judged and triumphed over my every movevement,
and I'll be damned if God himself wouldn't have been jealous
of those eyes.
I always mocked those who likened eyes to anything other than light sensors,
but these eyes were electric,
a torrent of life,
and I was nothing more than debris, the collateral damage of a storm,
lost, helpless, trapped,
a l i v e.

Empty?

Those eyes were a vortex of
long, thick, powerful strands,
something far superior to matter,
powerful energy writhing,
entwined around the vehement whirpool
of a reality envied by time itself.
Even the cold, harsh reality that had been the radio began to
cough,
choke,
wilt,
a distant reminder of yet more past sins.

I carefully observed the little toy solider,
standing 'neath the Christmas tree.
And I cried.

Interesting end, I liked how you showed the thought process of the observer going from what he thought in the beginning to realizing the truth about the toy soldier. Overall I enjoyed the piece. Thank you very much for sharing and I hope I helped/returned the favor. Good luck with round two on your piece. Have a good one!