What Used To Be

What Used To Be

A Poem by Shelby Baker



Every time i hear your name

it shakes me to the core

shivers run up and down my spine

shaking me out of my 'alright' bubble

reminding me everyday

                                                          what used to be..

The memory's  twists my insides

like a salty  twisted Pretzel

expect pretzels are good

the twisting i feel hurts

Feels like a hammer slamming down

 on my ankle shattering  it into pieces

thats what my heart feels like

                                                          What used to be...

Sometimes i got to take a minute before i can

Go on with my life and tell myself

how meaningless you are.

                                                            Now Today..

A tight rope slowly crawls around my heart

looping its self around and around

before squeezing the very warmth out

Killing any compassion i had for you at one time

It feels like the top of my head is sliced open

with a razor allowing the butterfly's of memory's to  fly free

 What used to be 

                                   forever gone

        just like yesterday.


© 2009 Shelby Baker

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Author's Note

Shelby Baker
Woot got out of my writers block :)

My Review

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Featured Review

My favorite part was: The memory's twists my insides
like a salty twisted Pretzel

I just really enjoyed how you compared your feelings to pretzels.
My only problem with the poem was you didn't capitalize the I's, and I don't know if it was intentional or not, but other than that the poem was written beautifully.

Posted 13 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


This starts out promising (both rhythmically and contextually); the opening two lines are haunting and allude to the mysterious nature of your theme. I enjoyed this piece immensely and appreciate the intensity but it quickly spirals into an emotional vortex of imagery...which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Aside from the typical spelling and grammar mistakes (which I will save for a separate conversation) I will elucidate on use of tense. "..memory's twists" implies that the "twists" belong to the "memory." I think another reviewer suggested how to fix this.

Something that I noticed you might want to pay attention to is how you will follow up your imagery with the literal definition of it. I only point this out because you use incredibly powerful imagery and by overextending in this way, you are detracting from the raw emotion (ie "...'alright' bubble," "memory twists...like a twisted pretzel," "...that's what my heart feels like," etc.) The third stanza, however, is powerful BECAUSE it removes the emotion and it only works this way as an isolated thought.

I have a feeling I'm not being as clear as I had hoped...

My favorite image is the tight rope spiderweb. It evokes the emotions you are describing (WITHOUT saying "I feel completely restricted") although "around" appears three times. It can serve you to use this word repeatedly if you wanted a "dizzying" effect but this is an image of constraint and I saw it as redundant (just my opinion).

In my opinion you should develop each of these concepts individually and expand this. Develop each idea more concretely: bubble, pretzel, hammer, razor, butterfly. All of these are physical things to which you have already assigned an emotion. Follow the rhythm you started with. Continue in this manner and I think you will find more ease in your ability.

Great start!

Posted 12 Years Ago

a deep poem, I felt your compassion and hurting. i liked this, good piece. keep writing.

Posted 12 Years Ago

A tight rope slowly crawls around my heart

looping its self around and around -------I love this expression.... you are sweet leaving me a message on my account... the pain of lost love.... innocently asking for reasong. To deal with our feelings is our daily challenge, and it is immensely difficult. bye dear. lara.

Posted 12 Years Ago

This is very good. Somethings can never be again, and somtimes it hurts, but maybe down the road it would be better than before.

Posted 12 Years Ago

outstanding imagery and feeling, i can feel your heart and depressing feeling after this. realistic, and creative write.


Posted 12 Years Ago

"What used to be.."
A simple phrase that can revive feelings of longing, happiness, dread. Ths is a wonderfully written piece. Your thught and word flow are on point. Niely done (Plus anyone that likes johnny Lange is a smart cookie..LOL


Posted 12 Years Ago

"The memory's twists my insides" Might be better as "The memories twist my insides"

"the butterfly's of memory's to fly free" Also might be better as "The butterfly of memories to fly free" Why? Because the two plurals counter each other instead of working together in harmony. The piece itself is gorgeous and I rate it 100% regardless but I do try to offer some constructive advice when I can.

Posted 12 Years Ago

Wow nice write! This was the part I felt most emotion in;

"A tight rope slowly crawls around my heart
looping its self around and around
before squeezing the very warmth out
Killing any compassion i had for you at one time"
Very deep, and well written. Many people can relate to the poem. Well done.

Posted 12 Years Ago

Great job the emotion is overwhelming!

Posted 12 Years Ago

Great work..
loved it

Posted 12 Years Ago

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53 Reviews
Added on August 11, 2009
Last Updated on October 22, 2009


Shelby Baker
Shelby Baker

Ware, MA

center> [~]Shelby Ace Baker [~] May 21 [~] Massachusetts [~] Smart & Witty [~] Sarcastic on occasion more..


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