poet Margaret Atwood

Margaret Atwood

#70 on top 500 poets

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.

Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003
Poem Edited: Monday, April 6, 2015

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A Sad Child # 85 poem on top 500 Poems
3,8 out of 5
118 total ratings
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Comments about A Sad Child by Margaret Atwood

  • Daria (10/24/2020 2:49:00 AM)

    Wonderful piece of poetry Learned it by heart

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  • Bhavika Dudhani (10/19/2020 1:07:00 AM)

    This piece is deep! ! !

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  • Bhavika Dudhani (10/19/2020 1:06:00 AM)

    This piece is amazing! ! !

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  • Mike Oxmal (10/18/2020 7:23:00 PM)

    wow! what a beautiful piece of many letters.

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  • Sebastian (10/8/2020 7:17:00 AM)

    As expected from a writer like Margaret Atwood, straightforward decent poem indeed. Margaret Atwood has always been honest even if the dire situation comes up. She greets it with a smile. Even when her dear husband fell asleep forever, she chose to be happy and spend the rest of her life with joy.

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  • Omale Daniel (9/28/2020 7:40:00 AM)

    this is actually an awesome piece of writing

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  • Omale Daniel (9/28/2020 7:40:00 AM)

    this is actually an awesome piece of writing

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  • Ali Da Poet (8/21/2020 2:56:00 PM)

    Good stuff

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  • Erin CowartErin Cowart (8/20/2020 12:37:00 PM)

    What an amazing piece of poetry!

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    Marie(7/30/2020 5:41:00 AM)

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  • Richard AntwiRichard Antwi (6/22/2020 2:36:00 PM)

    The 4th and 5th stanza are too sad to read
    Sad, indeed!

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    puppy(10/15/2020 3:18:00 PM)

    geed man u ugly and lick meh

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  • Dr Tony BrahminDr Tony Brahmin (5/20/2020 3:42:00 PM)

    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. very fine poem. tony

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  • Britte NinadBritte Ninad (3/4/2020 3:29:00 AM)

    with the ribbon
    and the ice-cream smear,
    and said to yourself in the bathroom,
    I am not the favorite child.

    sadistic note

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  • Mahtab BangaleeMahtab Bangalee (3/1/2020 4:09:00 AM)

    great poem penned///

    let's go forget the sorrow
    we the maker
    we savior
    our life, our world
    let's come the good morrow

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  • James odhiambo (1/28/2020 2:41:00 PM)

    Count thy blessings and stop sulking

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  • ritumoni das (7/22/2019 11:47:00 AM)

    wonderful poem

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Read poems about / on: sad, fog, car, children, child, red, sleep, sun, light, dance