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(18 November 1939 / Ottawa, Ontario)

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Siren Song

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

the song that forces men
to leap overboard in squadrons
even though they see beached skulls

the song nobody knows
because anyone who had heard it
is dead, and the others can’t remember.
Shall I tell you the secret
and if I do, will you get me
out of this bird suit?
I don’t enjoy it here
squatting on this island
looking picturesque and mythical
with these two feathery maniacs,
I don’t enjoy singing
this trio, fatal and valuable.

I will tell the secret to you,
to you, only to you.
Come closer. This song

is a cry for help: Help me!
Only you, only you can,
you are unique

at last. Alas
it is a boring song
but it works every time.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003


Read poems about / on: song, remember, time, work, beach

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Comments about this poem (Provisions by Margaret Atwood )

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  • Michael Morgan (2/15/2014 12:28:00 PM)

    a wonderful admission- zany and sneaky- of inside/outside incongruity, MM

    1 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
  • Dzekashu MacViban (1/9/2008 1:39:00 PM)

    A wonderful mystico-mythical yet simple individualistic and appealing poem.A kinda SOS.

Read all 2 comments »

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