Skip to content

A Sad Child

I love how Margaret Atwood manages to let go here – utterly – and yet still retain perfect control. It’s what she does best, I think. She gives the reader a breathless exhilarating free fall in her poems and all the while we know we are in expert hands.


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.

More Toronto Book Launch photos!

Maureen and CJ 840x400Murphy children reading book 840x400More from launch of The Music of Leaving, my new book of poetry, on Saturday evening, November 1st at the Women’s Art Association of Canada in Toronto’s Yorkville.

My poetry in outer space.

I am reading from my new book at Toronto’s Runnymede Library next Thursday, October 16th.

And I ‘ll be introducing the author Bob McDonald host of CBC’s weekly science show Quirks and Quarks, who will launch his latest book Canadian Spacewalkers: Hadfield, MacLean and Williams Remember the Ultimate High Adventure.

This man has an asteroid named after him! Whether it’s heading this way I’ll have to check with him…

Science and Art intersecting!

Do you like my poetry?

Author Michael Ondaatje says of her work,

“Sharon Olds’s poems are pure fire in the hands, risky, on the verge of falling, and in the end leaping up. I love the roughness and humor and brag and tenderness and completion in her work as she carries the reader through rooms of passion and loss.”[7]


Even Ondaatje’s reviews are pure poetry…

Writer and Poet

Tricia McCallum profile

Tricia McCallum

Always be a poet. Even in prose.
Charles Baudelaire.

In essence I am a storyteller who writes poems. Put simply, I write the poems I want to read.[…]

Amazon Profile

Error validating access token: Session has expired on Thursday, 13-May-21 12:58:54 PDT. The current time is Wednesday, 27-Oct-21 12:46:12 PDT.

New Book

Books on Goodreads

Tricia McCallum

Recent Comments

Thanks for sharing


Past Posts


All Topics