A Sad Child by Margaret Atwood

Tuesday, November 14, 2017


You're sad because you're sad. 

It's psychic. It's the age. It's chemical. 

Go see a shrink or take a pill, 

or hug your sadness like an eyeless doll 

you need to sleep. 



Well, all children are sad 

but some get over it. 

Count your blessings. Better than that, 

buy a hat. Buy a coat or pet. 

Take up dancing to forget. 



Forget what? 

Your sadness, your shadow, 

whatever it was that was done to you 

the day of the lawn party 

when you came inside flushed with the sun, 

your mouth sulky with sugar, 

in your new dress with the ribbon 

and the ice-cream smear, 

and said to yourself in the bathroom, 

I am not the favorite child. 



My darling, when it comes 

right down to it 

and the light fails and the fog rolls in 

and you're trapped in your overturned body 

under a blanket or burning car, 



and the red flame is seeping out of you 

and igniting the tarmac beside your head 

or else the floor, or else the pillow, 

none of us is; 

or else we all are.
~ Margaret Atwood

pearlie

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