A Different Kind of Tale

December 7, 2011
By nlaubach BRONZE, Dix Hills, New York
nlaubach BRONZE, Dix Hills, New York
2 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Once upon a time is how most stories start,
But this one will begin quite differently.
For it is about a girl who obtains a broken heart
And that girl this story is about, no it is not me.

It was the morning of her sixteenth birthday, this girl named Jane.
She wakes with a smile on her face,
Ready for this day’s fast pace,
Because Jane knows today, unlike every other, would finally be sane.

Jane is a peculiar girl, some might say.
Her father owns a funeral home and her mother, well,
I’ll leave it up to Jane to tell.
Her life is not as normal as others’ may.

Jane went down the crooked, creaky, creepy stairs in the mansion she lives,
Only to find her mother and father with a grey mass dragging them down, not even dressed.
Receiving no acknowledgement as she walked in the kitchen, she turned back feeling depressed.
Going straight to her room Jane’s cat hisses as she walks past, and Jane thinks, “What gives?”

Jane sheds a tear, knowing no one cares.
Walking aimlessly around the washed-out walls surrounding her,
She sings herself the soft melody of her birthday song wishing this day would defer.
Jane thinks the hopeless thought that no one loves her, the thought no one bears.

But then Jane hears the familiar bells ringing outside,
The bells that sounded everyday to indicate a funeral was about to begin.
She opens her chipped door and starts to walk down the crooked, creaky, creepy steps as it once has been.
Through the black door is where the funeral home is located, and she became surprised.

Jane came across all her relatives in those dark small chairs scattered throughout the room.
All with tired eyes, debilitated, and weary motions.
She spotted her father and mother trying to make a notion.
But why were her relatives all gathered here to gloom?

She walked around to the back of the room but no one spotted Jane.
She continued to weave through her relatives not even receiving a glance.
It was as if her whole family did not know her and they were in a trance.
Jane made her way to an open black casket to find what made her face drain.

Jane could no longer hold in those sorrowful tears,
For what she found is a person’s worst fear.
She found herself, lying frozen on her death bed
With her eyes closed, pale lips and cold fingers because Jane was dead.

The story does not end just yet because Jane’s day brightens just a bit.
After she found herself dead, like an animal carcass, she was removed from the humdrum insipidness.
The walls gained life, the air became sweet and the room alit.
Jane finally escapes into a state of bliss.

The author's comments:
This poem is about a girl named Jane who wakes up not knowing she previously died. It is Jane’s birthday, and when she goes to greet her parents, she wasn’t even acknowledged. Jane automatically assumes her parents don’t love her. Later in the poem, Jane discovers all her relatives are at her own funeral. But then the once dull, lifeless setting becomes a beautiful, lively setting to portray Jane going to heaven. My inspirations for this poem were the themes of heaven and death. I wanted to compare the two while still composing my poem as a gothic-like poem. The affect I was trying to create was a dark, black and white setting. I purposely described the original setting as dull and grey to exemplify heaven as a godly place later in the poem and that Jane’s life became better once she enters heaven. Even her name took part in this dull setting because Jane is a very plain, common name. I also dragged out the time it took Jane to realize she was dead to build suspense as the reader tries to figure out what is truly going on. Little details like Jane’s parents and relatives not acknowledging her gave hints to the fact Jane is a ghost. Another hint to her ghostly being was Jane’s cat was the only one that could see her because cats are believed to be able to see ghosts. I created my poem this way to make a mysterious story with a surprising ending. Some literary elements I used were metaphors and similes. For example, “-only to find her mother and father with a grey mass dragging them down, not even dressed.” Here the “grey mass” is her parents’ sadness. An example of a simile is, “After she found herself dead, like an animal carcass, she was removed from the humdrum insipidness.” Other literary elements that were used were alliteration and irony. An example of irony is in the beginning of the poem Jane thinks she is going to have a sane day for once in her life but as the story goes on she obviously does not. To enforce the gothic theme, I used unstable rhyming schemes. The first stanza is a quatrain with a cross-rhyming scheme of “abab.” The second and continuing to the third to last stanza are all quatrains with the envelope-rhyming scheme of “abba.” The second to last stanza is a couple of couplets, “aa”, and the last stanza mimics the first stanza as a quatrain with a cross-rhyming scheme. Finally, I composed this poem in the third person’s point of view to create a distant effect for the reader. This was to add on the gothic, dark theme of my work.

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