Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood Poems

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
...

The moment when, after many years
of hard work and a long voyage
you stand in the centre of your room,
house, half-acre, square mile, island, country,
...

You fit into me
like a hook into an eye

a fish hook
...

Love is not a profession
genteel or otherwise

sex is not dentistry
...

This is a word we use to plug
holes with. It's the right size for those warm
blanks in speech, for those red heart-
shaped vacancies on the page that look nothing
...

Marriage is not
a house or even a tent
...

It was taken some time ago
At first it seems to be
a smeared
print: blurred lines and grey flecks
...

Cruising these residential Sunday
streets in dry August sunlight:
what offends us is
the sanities:
...

Your lungs fill & spread themselves,
wings of pink blood, and your bones
empty themselves and become hollow.
When you breathe in you’ll lift like a balloon
...

The world is full of women
who'd tell me I should be ashamed of myself
if they had the chance. Quit dancing.
Get some self-respect
...

More and more frequently the edges
of me dissolve and I become
a wish to assimilate the world, including
you, if possible through the skin
...

12.

All those times I was bored
out of my mind. Holding the log
while he sawed it. Holding
the string while he measured, boards,
...

I would like to watch you sleeping,
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you,
sleeping. I would like to sleep
...

This is the one song everyone
would like to learn: the song
that is irresistible:
...

There is nothing to be afraid of,
it is only the wind
changing to the east, it is only
your father the thunder
...

In the burned house I am eating breakfast.
You understand: there is no house, there is no breakfast,
yet here I am.
...

In the secular night you wander around
alone in your house. It's two-thirty.
Everyone has deserted you,
or this is your story;
...

My shadow said to me:
what is the matter
...

Gone are the days
when you could walk on water.
When you could walk.
...

He was the sort of man
who wouldn't hurt a fly.
Many flies are now alive
while he is not.
...

Margaret Atwood Biography

a Canadian poet, novelist, literary critic, essayist, and environmental activist. She is among the most-honoured authors of fiction in recent history; she is a winner of the Arthur C. Clarke Award and Prince of Asturias award for Literature, has been shortlisted for the Booker Prize five times, winning once, and has been a finalist for the Governor General's Award seven times, winning twice. While she is best known for her work as a novelist, she is also a poet, having published 15 books of poetry to date. Many of her poems have been inspired by myths and fairy tales, which have been interests of hers from an early age. Atwood has published short stories in Tamarack Review, Alphabet, Harper's, CBC Anthology, Ms., Saturday Night, and many other magazines. She has also published four collections of stories and three collections of unclassifiable short prose works.)

The Best Poem Of Margaret Atwood

A Sad Child

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 Comments

Indigo Hawkins 15 February 2008

She's great with the cleverness and craft, fresh rather than trite. Definitely one of my favs.

51 39 Reply
Jill Paterson 16 January 2007

Atwood's poems reveal a raw sense of feminism and wit. She writes freely yet craftily addresses the issues she wishes to broadcast. I really love her cynicism and apparent indifference to appearances and norms. She's radical!

36 48 Reply
Martin 23 June 2022

She is a feminist yes, but unlike msny her feminism is not void of morality which some uf not most ignore.

0 0 Reply
Ramanan Piraisoody 21 November 2004

In the secular night, seems to be a cynnical poem addressing ones life. It is made apparent there is a sort of deterministic lifestyle, presented to humans 'you took..you say..you start..' almost makes the reader feel as though he has no choice or power over his own actions. Also, the reader feels as though hes all alone, yet since he really has no power over his own actions, his seclusion is inevitable. The poem is a story of life, from start to end and the continuity of life. It starts with the 'secular' which could mean 'from century to century', and ends with the century grinds on... implying an on going cycles of centuries. 'The sensed absence of God and the sensed presence, amount to much the same thing' this poem also addresses Gods role in life, once a person believes he has no power over his own actions, the existence of God is irrelevant. Overall the poem in the secular night, is about life, its assumed ownership over the person, and his inability to do anything about it.

29 52 Reply
Sara Militello 04 December 2021

I just now discovered you. We were born the same year. I experience your poems as quite arresting.

0 0 Reply
Kumarmani Mahakul 06 November 2020

Margaret Atwood is ranked #62 on top 500 poets on date 06 November 2020. His poems are really majestic and magical.

0 0 Reply
Kumarmani Mahakul 23 October 2020

Margaret Atwood, who is ranked #96 on top 500 poets of the world on date 23 October 2020, is wonderful poetess of deep knowledge. Her poems reflect deep perception and philosophical aspects. Reading and reviewing her poems I feel very happy. More and more she has grown in hearts of people.

2 0 Reply
Jessica 03 February 2021

Her book The Robber Bride opens on October 23rd. I remember because it is my birthday and I was tickled pink by it as a teen.

0 0 Reply
filet 23 October 2020

This is a very special book-a book everyone should read-I am amazed how well written, dealing with the sensitive material, the Autism aspect teaches us so much about patience and listening to the animals and humans. Is this book in the schools?

0 0 Reply
Mill.Blair 09 February 2020

445 SW Rim Way

0 4 Reply

Margaret Atwood Quotes

Popular art is the dream of society; it does not examine itself.

If a stranger taps you on the ass and says, "How's the little lady today!" you will probably cringe. But if he's an American, he's only being friendly.

I feel that the task of criticizing my poetry is best left to others (i.e. critics) and would much rather have it take place after I am dead. If at all.

Everyone thinks writers must know more about the inside of the human head, but that is wrong. They know less, that's why they write. Trying to find out what everyone else takes for granted.

The beginning of Canadian cultural nationalism was not "Am I really that oppressed?" but "Am I really that boring?"

We yearned for the future. How did we learn it, that talent for insatiability?

I've never understood why people consider youth a time of freedom and joy. It's probably because they have forgotten their own.

Margaret Atwood Popularity

Margaret Atwood Popularity

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