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Postcards Analysis

Author: Poetry of Margaret Atwood Type: Poetry Views: 435

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1978I'm thinking about you. What else can I say?

The palm trees on the reverse

are a delusion; so is the pink sand.

What we have are the usual

fractured coke bottles and the smell

of backed-up drains, too sweet,

like a mango on the verge

of rot, which we have also.

The air clear sweat, mosquitoes

& their tracks; birds & elusive.Time comes in waves here, a sickness, one

day after the other rolling on;

I move up, it's called

awake, then down into the uneasy

nights but never

forward. The roosters crow

for hours before dawn, and a prodded

child howls & howls

on the pocked road to school.

In the hold with the baggage

there are two prisoners,

their heads shaved by bayonets, & ten crates

of queasy chicks. Each spring

there's race of cripples, from the store

to the church. This is the sort of junk

I carry with me; and a clipping

about democracy from the local paper.Outside the window

they're building the damn hotel,

nail by nail, someone's

crumbling dream. A universe that includes you

can't be all bad, but

does it? At this distance

you're a mirage, a glossy image

fixed in the posture

of the last time I saw you.

Turn you over, there's the place

for the address. Wish you were

here. Love comes

in waves like the ocean, a sickness which goes on

& on, a hollow cave

in the head, filling & pounding, a kicked ear.


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