Darkness to Light

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Today at d’Verse, Peter from Australia challenged us to focus on editing. He said we should write like a dog and edit like a cat. Love what you write, then go back and edit like it was the first time you read it. He asked us to take a poem we had already written and reedit it. Then post both poems to show the changes. This is a poem I did a couple of years ago.

Face the Light

In the black darkness

one can see a candle

burning in the distance

unless he turns his back

staring into the darkness

where there is no light

The first is hope

the other is depression

Turn until you see the light

Focus on it

Follow it

It will light your way

Guiding you out of the darkness


Face the Light

Black darkness overwhelms

Distant candle burns // shines

Bringing glimmer’s promise

unless I turn back

staring into the abyss

blackness swallowing me


Choosing hope over

dark depression

I strain against darkness grasping light

Focus // Follow glimmer’s path

Light of Promise // Guides me

Brighter day dawns

Darkness to Light


For some great editing tips join us at: https//dversepoets.com

56 thoughts on “Darkness to Light

  1. I like what you’ve done in the revision – it’s more direct and personal. Rather than talk about ‘the darkness’ as an abstract thing, in the revision the poet is directly struggling with the darkness – you’ve swapped ‘he’ for ‘i’ & for me this makes it a more engaging poem. I particularly liked ‘Focus // Follow glimmer’s path’ – the sound works so well with the meaning.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you so much Peter for your kind assessment of my revision. It really did bring the poem into focus. I guess that is why I like writing haiku. It makes me say things is concise and precise ways with no extra words to play with.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the message and the subject matter of both poems: I recognise the struggle with depression and desire to turn towards the light. I think the message comes through most clearly in the second, which is especially powerful!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dwight, I loved the first one for its strong advice, and you just blew so much power into it when you pivoted into personal territory and the struggle became immediate and intimate. Great poem to select for this process to illustrate what that simple step into vulnerability can do to expand a poem’s reach!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I’m going against the flow but I prefer the first version. I think it’s the use of // that I’m not a big fan of. And the general for me is more universal. The second has a faintly Christian feel to it with the Light of promise, and well, you know me 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  5. What fun to read all the comments! I learned as much from your readers as I did from your rewrite! Great insights were shared. I am going to try revising an old one of mine. Thanks for the inspiration, {{{Dwight}}}. May this 9-11 be a day of light for you. Peace, my friend ❤️✌🏽

    Liked by 4 people

  6. I like the changes you’ve made, Dwight. Most especially this
    “…unless I turn back
    staring into the abyss
    blackness swallowing me”

    The addition of the word “abyss” really visualizes for me the deep deep hole of depression.

    Liked by 2 people

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