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To see all of the little lights; Common App/ Where are you most content?


midge 1 / 8 2  
Oct 27, 2013   #1
Fireflies hang suspended in the underbrush like Christmas lights, celebrating the long-awaited dusk. The dimly-lit road lies before us. The streetlight, a lonely sentry keeping watch over the barren pavement, is nearly a mile away.

At times, words flow between us like water; we still are able to enjoy a companionable silence and the rarity of each other's presence. My best friend, my brother, is going off to school the day after tomorrow; this is how we find ourselves, walking down Sturgeon Point at 10pm.

After what seems like an eternity, we reach the railroad crossing. The lights aren't flashing- it's safe to go down along the double tracks and walk in the loose gravel. At first we laugh as we stumble over the rocks, but I'm nearly in tears ten minutes later because of the unexpected exercise my ankles are getting. I decide the relief outweighs the risk. So, for once in our lives, we act like reckless teens because we are invincible and young. Disregarding the evident danger, we mount the tracks and lunge from plank to plank.

The heat of the day is but a distant memory, but we've been here before. My leather jacket is satisfactory in its task of keeping out the nighttime chill as we swiftly move along the rails while exchanging quotes from our favorite authors. He tends to favor Oscar Wilde's "Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation." I prefer Virginia Woolf's "It is no use trying to sum people up."

The colors, dimly lit by moonlight, speed by faster than I can blink. Just as quickly as they appear, they disappear into the dark night. We jump the trench that separates the tracks from the woods. We've almost reached our destination. Just a short climb remains. We begin our steep ascent through rough bushes with thorns, receiving our share of cuts and scrapes.

We arrive at our final destination. There is a towering, graffiti-covered bridge at the top of the hill that overlooks the entire town. Looking out and breathing in the town, seeing the small world in which we live-it is all worth it; to see all of the little lights radiating out into the dark expanse, for a time I am content.

Anumeha 7 / 13 2  
Oct 27, 2013   #2
I like it! Very descriptive. However, in the midst of the imagery of the essay, the actual substance you are talking about gets kind of confusing... Maybe be a little less vague at some points? Add some details that clearly tells the reader what exactly you are doing- especially in the 2nd paragraph. Also that last sentence is kind of short and its meaning is not easily discernible.

Overall, I understood that you enjoyed spending time with your brother, but after reading it, I do recommend you polish this up a little, since I couldn't really understand what exactly you two were ding while getting to your "destination".

Good luck! :)
Gregore2000 1 / 2 1  
Oct 27, 2013   #3
I agree with Anumeha. Your writing is very descriptive, but the discussion of your favorite quote seems awkward. Perhaps, if you transitioned between you and your brother running along the tracks and exchanging your favorite quotes the flow of the essay would be better. Your choice of place is great as well as how you enjoyed spending time with your brother. Good luck!
Lydmeister 6 / 17  
Oct 27, 2013   #4
I agree with anumeha that your imagery is wonderful, however, I am left unsure of the message you are trying to get across as an applicant. Definitely expand on this before you submit. You are far from reaching the word limit; use at least some of that space!

Also be very careful with your descriptions of being "reckless". "Disregarding evident danger" often gets college students into trouble and admissions officers will look to avoid individuals who have a tendency towards unwise behavior. There is nothing wrong with the topic or the event, but switch out reckless for carefree. You will seem like a very well adjusted person too.

Ultimately your essay was very fun/easy to read which admissions officers will love! It definitely shows command over the written language. Now just work on actually conveying the message about you and your identity. Your character is one of the most important factors in the admissions process.
OP midge 1 / 8 2  
Oct 27, 2013   #5
Definitely see what all of you are talking about; I found everything extremely helpful. Thanks for the input.:)
kaough 1 / 6  
Oct 28, 2013   #6
The style is great and really moves the whole essay on like one would expect from a short story or work of fiction in general but just maybe refine it to where it is more centered around what part of the whole event is what consistently leaves you content. The ending especially could be reworded to where the reader can see what makes you feel at peace and why.
jfang 1 / 10 3  
Oct 28, 2013   #7
Love the writing style and descriptions...as everyone else said.
If you more strongly associate the railroad track experience with the joy of being with your brother, it would make your essay more powerful. Do you still go to the tracks yourself, just to relive the memories of being with him?

So, for once in our lives, we act like reckless teens

Don't say this. You've done it more than once, right? Then it should be "for the first time in our lives"


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