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Little Boy Blue: A Poem

Updated on November 3, 2011
This flower represents the hope I have that the subject of this poem is now doing well in his adult life.
This flower represents the hope I have that the subject of this poem is now doing well in his adult life.

Little Boy Blue

This poem is something that I wrote for a young guy that I knew who had a trouble past and who was struggling to find his own identity through drug addiction and other problems. His favorite color was blue and his eyes were an intense blue. To form the poem, I took the lines from first part of the original nursery rhyme of the same name and then added my own words in measured sections. I inverted the form of the last section for a poetic twist.

Little Boy Blue

Sunburst sparkled ocean eyes

Filled with the sewage litter

Of the full of pain past

Suicidal tendencies repressed beneath

The mask of control and coolness that you

Desperately press upon your face

You want to pretend that

You know the inside of your soul

And further to pretend

That you like what you see there

Come blow your horn

A little harder in order to stir up

The desert storm necessary to

Sublimate the intensity of the emotions

You’d do anything not to feel

Beat your drum to drum out

The beating of your frightened heart

Tapotement touches across tight tones

Create music in every motion you make

In order to escape the cacophony of

Your symphonically screaming mind

The sheep’s in the meadow

Grazing among tranquility which

You try to emulate, claiming that

You don’t like melodrama

While simultaneously sucking it in to you

Sheep flocked at farms near schools

That nearly murdered you inside

Teaching you not to trust and not to love

Because you’d been forced away

Into a box you couldn’t fit inside

Because you’d ripped apart the box

They gave you to play with as a child

The cow’s in the corn

Contemplating the essence of the stalks

And you’re in your mind

Stalking the essence of contemplation

And then running when it comes your way

Thrashing violently in the light sleep nights

Your body contorts in memory

Your face screams silently

The demons you chase have turned to chase you

And you are devoured into waking

Forced again into a reality where

Comfort is constantly sought

And never lingers

Where is the little boy

Who used to play recklessly because

He wasn’t afraid of getting hurt?

And when did he relinquish his place

To a boy who pays recklessly

Because he wants to do the harming

Before the hurting hits him?

Where is the innocence of ignorance?

Where is the laughter of simplicity?

Where is the man the boy wants to be?

And who is this guy in between them?

Who looks after the sheep

When the gates are all crashed,

When the guardian of the heart has

Gone on his thirty minute lunch break

When the incognito emotions slip through the door

And the animals go running out wildly?

You listen to your mother and allow no attachments

Because by abandoning you,

She taught you about the pain they create

Pain pummels the poet’s path

The past plays games of reflection

And injection and manipulation and mutilation

Under the haystack

Of complication and corruption and chaos

Lie the obscure needles

Of connection and caress and caring

Little boys love to play in the mud

Grown men do the snow shoveling with age-old tools

And in between the adolescent

Insists upon his exemption

From the search for the needle

From the search for reality

From the search for the girl that

Spins the hay into gold

Little Boy Blue

The depth of you creates echoes

So harmonious

They could simplify society

The cultivation of you creates illusions

So realistic that they could become you

The soul of you beckons in

The mind of you

And begs to be released

And so you open your eyes

As wide as you can

And fall

Fast asleep


Submit a Comment

  • profile image

    CJ Sledgehammer 

    6 years ago

    Outstanding, Kathryn, you really put yourself into this poem. Well done!!! Voted up.

    Best wishes and be well - C.J. Sledgehammer

  • Kulsum Mehmood profile image

    Dr Kulsum Mehmood 

    7 years ago from Nagpur, India

    Vivid imagination in writing this poem. Very interesting and awesome. Voted up. Nice style. Unique.

  • AudreyHowitt profile image

    Audrey Howitt 

    7 years ago from California

    Great use of form and imagery in this piece!

  • Kulsum Mehmood profile image

    Dr Kulsum Mehmood 

    7 years ago from Nagpur, India

    Amazing and interesting poem. Keep them coming.

  • Jerilee Wei profile image

    Jerilee Wei 

    7 years ago from United States

    Loved, loved, loved this poem!

  • robie2 profile image

    Roberta Kyle 

    7 years ago from Central New Jersey

    This one is totally haunting and speaks once again through the images of childhood of abused and abuser fused as one. Absolutely brilliant.

  • Michael Graves profile image

    Michael Graves 

    7 years ago

    Very vivid use of language. I like how you used each line to begin a stanza, but then ended with the line "fast asleep". I think it was exactly the way to give the poem a sense of finality. Voted up, and look forward to seeing more of your writing.

  • profile image


    7 years ago

    You've got some rockin' imagery there, girl. Absolutely amazing poem. I really love it! Voted up and awesome!


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