How easily I shed them as a child,

in misery or frantic rage,

impervious to taunts of crybaby,

bawling my grief to the tiny world

which adults have forgotten

and only children know.

Nowadays I lay aside the melancholy book

with merely a sigh, sit stony-lipped

through many a tragic film,

not to mention global disasters

nightly served with the news

at dinner-time. I meet

the loss of friends and loved ones

dry-eyed—albeit numb

with regret.

Almost I wish I had not lost the art

of weeping, lost the feel of warm tears

raining down my cheeks,

that collapse of control,

surrender to raw emotion.

But then I think: what could provoke

the breaking of this lachrymal drought?

And am thankful for

its continuance.

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