At War | Teen Ink

At War

September 4, 2013
By BurrThistle GOLD, Jaipur, Other
BurrThistle GOLD, Jaipur, Other
10 articles 0 photos 162 comments

Favorite Quote:
Write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect


I breathed heavily, and exhaled even quicker, as if expelling the air out of my lungs would expel the acrid smell of the atmosphere. It was a very peculiar yet, distinguishable odor. No matter where I went, I knew I would always be able to recognize this smell. That was the worst part about all of this, I could close my eyes to shut out the terrible sights and I could press my fingers over my ears and hum robotically to drown out the screams but I couldn’t ignore the fetid.
It was sickly sweet yet bitter at the same time; it made my head spin and my empty stomach growl.
Blood, sweat, vomit, stale food, urine, feces, tears, desperation, fear and death. These things made a unique stench. A cold gust of fresh, air whipped across my face and I breathed into it greedily, I knew I wouldn’t get more of these.
I observed the dying man in front of me, there will be no help for him. I had long since stopped falling apart at the sight of death. I knew that the same fate awaited me in the foreseeable future. No matter what I did, I was a dead man.
My mind drifted away from my imminent demise and slowly slipped into the memories of my home. Like shards of broken glass, jagged memories with rough edges flickered in my mind- my wife’s amused frown, my daughter’s sweet smile, my son’s small fingers. I remembered the unadulterated air of my fields, the warm sun on my back and my wife’s soft touch on my cheek. So many exquisite sensations, I had let go to waste, simply because I hadn’t appreciated them. So many kisses, smiles and touches I longed for now.
The happy memories of my home juxtaposed with the bleak landscape of the war- torn hills made my core ache.
I sighed and turned my back on the dying man and walked away.



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This article has 11 comments.


Beila BRONZE said...
on Feb. 19 2015 at 10:37 pm
Beila BRONZE, Palo Alto, California
3 articles 0 photos 519 comments

Favorite Quote:
"The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco." -Mark Twain

To echo what has been said, your imagery captures these precious moments and traps them somewhere deep within the reader. The one thing I thought sadly detracted from the incredible power of this piece was that it looks like you didn't proofread. There were too many grammatical errors to "overlook;" they disrupted the flow of the story. It's a shame, because the rest was sublime.

on Apr. 16 2014 at 4:14 pm
BurrThistle GOLD, Jaipur, Other
10 articles 0 photos 162 comments

Favorite Quote:
Write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect

I love you... i just, just love you. 

on Apr. 16 2014 at 4:13 pm
BurrThistle GOLD, Jaipur, Other
10 articles 0 photos 162 comments

Favorite Quote:
Write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect

Thnak you for the constructive critique. And, sorry for the typo, i meant fetid air. Don't know where i lost that word.

KaavyaM said...
on Apr. 15 2014 at 10:51 am
The imagery is so powerful; I can literally see, hear and smell the battle field around me. You use language with skill and grace. Like "Jagged memories with rough edges"? That's just brilliant. You put me in the war field, in the shoes of a weary soldier for a few minutes, so kudos to you.

on Apr. 11 2014 at 8:37 pm
Lauren_Marie_115 BRONZE, Cincinnati, Ohio
1 article 0 photos 7 comments

Favorite Quote:
"They say before you start a war, you better know what you're fighting for."

Wow, I really enjoyed this! I could definately see you turning this into a full story and all that. The only thing I could see that was wrong would be grammar and the use of fetid. According to google, (and I loved that you used a word that I had to look up the definition of!) it is an adjective and you used it as a noun. But other than that, I really loved the questioning mood and how i really wanted to know the story of this man. Is he a normal, everyday person? Or maybe a killer? I don't know and I kind of need more ;D

on Feb. 20 2014 at 11:16 am
BurrThistle GOLD, Jaipur, Other
10 articles 0 photos 162 comments

Favorite Quote:
Write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect

i could ask you the same thing ! i envy your ability to arrage words and make such powerful poems !

Hanban12 ELITE said...
on Feb. 20 2014 at 11:00 am
Hanban12 ELITE, Lake Worth, Florida
133 articles 7 photos 633 comments

Favorite Quote:
"If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put foundations under them."
Henry David Thoreau

"I fell in love the way you fall asleep; slowly, and then all at once."
John Green

You have such a brilliant way with words! How do you do it? Each word is so powerful and lovely in their own way! So much imagery, I can envision everything clearly. Amazing!

on Jan. 6 2014 at 9:29 am
BurrThistle GOLD, Jaipur, Other
10 articles 0 photos 162 comments

Favorite Quote:
Write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect

Thank you so much ! you must be a psychic becasue I am on the debate team. Thank you for your feedback, really. 

midnightwoah said...
on Jan. 5 2014 at 6:31 pm
midnightwoah, Monett, Missouri
0 articles 0 photos 191 comments

Favorite Quote:
"We accept the love we think we deserve." -Stephen Chbosky

If you are trying to do a prose you are at a great start! I hope you join Speech and Debate in high school so you can do more prose/poetry. Your work has a very precocious termanology. Thanks so much for all your comments and keep writing :) 

on Oct. 23 2013 at 9:36 am
BurrThistle GOLD, Jaipur, Other
10 articles 0 photos 162 comments

Favorite Quote:
Write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect

Thank you so much. I was hoping to make the most obvious things here the subtlest and yes, i was aiming for prose. I'm glad you like the piece. 

on Oct. 22 2013 at 9:25 am
boundlesswildflower SILVER, Minneapolis, Minnesota
8 articles 1 photo 56 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Some infinities are bigger than other infinities." - faults in our stars by John Green

Wow, I was literally speech less reading your article! Its so sad and goes deeper than most think. Thats why I had to read it more than once. I also think it was such anice twist that you wrote in prose than verse. I'm not sure if that was a mistake but for me it strengthened the piece! Thanks for sharing it on my forum! :)


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