Two Sides to Every Poem

The setting is World War II. He called her his Sunflower. He was her Sunshine.


Sunflower, Sunflower,

Dancing on the Wind

Sunflower, Sunflower,

Dance with me again?

You were my little flower

The one I treasured most

Even separated by the sea

I knew that we were close

Amidst blood and gunfire,

I had received your dispatch

While I read, I discovered

You were another man’s catch

My heart sank within my chest

You were his to love, not mine

Then soldiers were called to action,

Sent to hold the battle line

You can’t nurse an aching heart

While war rages all around

Still I tried to fix my heart

While artillery bore down

You were the distraction

That costed my all

Now I wonder

As angels sound their call

As my bones shatter

As my heart slow its beat

Had you ever really loved me,

With love both pure and sweet?

Had your heart ever been mine,

As mine was always yours?

I ponder this though

With soldiers dying by the scores

I hope this man loves you

As I did with all my heart

Now I must say good bye

For death is tearing us apart

Sunflower, Sunflower,

I now must bid you adieu

Sunflower, Sunflower,

My heart still belongs to you

Sunshine, Sunshine,

Lighting all I see

Sunshine, Sunshine,

Why did you leave me?

You were my beaming sun,

The one I loved the most

But then came the war

And we were no longer closer

I sent so many letters

Few received a reply

Do you know how many nights

I went to sleep and cried?

Loneliness ate away

At both my life and soul

My heart was missing half

When once it had been whole

Days bled together

As I awaited your return

I tried so hard not to feel

But still my heart did yearn

I dream of those days

When you vowed never to leave

I dream of days

When I wore my heart upon my sleeve

Why does this hurt so much,

The loneliness and ache?

Why won’t God return you,

At least for my heart’s sake?

Are you alive, love?

Do you hear me still?

I promised I would wait

And wait for you I will

Even if the pain

Kills me before you come back

Even if you fall

From an enemy’s attack

But now there’s a man

With his arms open wide

He eases the pain

I feel on the inside

The heart-splitting pain

EasesΒ when he is around

I no longer feel

As if I’m being drowned

And so with trembling hand

I write my last letter

I hope you find someone

Who is so much better

I lean back, so the ink

Isn’t ruined by my tears

I sob, for this letter

Is among your greatest fears

Sunshine, Sunshine,

I am far beyond selfish, it’s true

Sunshine, Sunshine,

I’m sorry I didn’t wait for you

I wrote the second part of this poem a few days later, after my little sister told me what a terrible person his “Sunflower” must have been. As a writer, I was reminded that there are two sides to every story–and to every poem. Have any of you ever heard one side of the story and thought one thing, but then you heard the other side and your perspective completely shifted?

Recent Comments

  • (she who must not be named)
    September 14, 2016 - 5:23 pm · Reply

    (claps)W…O…W WOW. That was beautiful! Lol, it was sad (but that’s great). Interesting I never saw poetry that way. Hmmm one of the poems I’ve read made me shift in perspectives about a couple, the woman told him to leave her alone so I thought he was just being in sensitive, later to find out it was better for her not to be alone. Thanks for the great poem! I thought you were just putting it as an example from someone, to find later you were the poet. As I read poetry ill pay attention more to the two sides;)

    • Elizabeth Newsom
      September 17, 2016 - 5:08 pm · Reply

      Why, thank you! I’m so glad you got something from it πŸ™‚ I find poetry is a great outlet for emotions–especially ones like sadness and anger.

      • Hannah
        September 18, 2016 - 5:24 pm · Reply

        I was quite unhappy when I had to write poetry for school, since emotions and descriptions are my least favorite parts of writing, but I think it did some good. At the very least, I practiced writing more interesting and visually-oriented descriptions. It also made me exercise my Se more, since that is my weakest function.

        • Elizabeth Newsom
          September 21, 2016 - 12:49 pm · Reply

          Ah, I can see that. Poetry does seem to be centered on emotions. Well, I’m glad you got something out of it. I’ve found it comes more easily the more often you do it, and it really helps me with my emotional control. πŸ™‚ Do you think you’ll include any poetry in your books?

  • Brenna
    September 15, 2016 - 12:20 pm · Reply

    I didn’t know you wrote poetry, Liz! This is beautiful- although I like the first part best. Also, I really shouldn’t be laughing- but I can just picture your sister saying that. πŸ™‚ It’s always cool when we get to see the other side of the story. That’s one reason I like the Star Wars Prequel Trilogy, despite it constantly being bashed- it tells the other side of the story, allowing us to understand Darth Vader.

    • Elizabeth Newsom
      September 17, 2016 - 5:09 pm · Reply

      I’m just kind of trying it out πŸ˜‰ It’s part of school, and I’m really enjoying it! I like the prequel trilogy too. And I don’t blame you for laughing at all πŸ˜‰ So glad you liked it! Thank you, Brenna πŸ™‚

  • Hannah
    September 16, 2016 - 9:29 pm · Reply

    This poems are beautiful! Very tragic too. You did an amazing job with them. It’s such a horrible position for two people to be in. There really is no way for it to turn out well. Magnificent poems that capture the heart of the dilemma – great job, keep sharing!

    • Elizabeth Newsom
      September 17, 2016 - 5:10 pm · Reply

      Thank you, Hannah! I’m glad you liked it, and thank you so much for the encouragement and support πŸ™‚

  • Gracen
    September 17, 2016 - 2:30 am · Reply

    Wow, your poetry is really good. My analysis: If the guy really liked her he would have written more often. Personally, I think he deserved it. But then if the girl had really loved him she would have waited for him…

    • Elizabeth Newsom
      September 17, 2016 - 5:23 pm · Reply

      Oh, but Gracen! It’s hard to write back during a war. People are busy doing stuff like dying. Most people who have heard the poems say it’s the girl’s fault for not waiting, so it’s interesting to hear your perspective πŸ˜‰

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