(24 January 1961 / South Africa)

A Doldrums-State [rev]

The shaving-of-my-head-ideal came to naught,
I rather need pink burkas to hide behind - clad
from head to toe nothing showing, eyes behind
a mesh of fabric or a religious mask - I'll not be
criticised again, never stand before my loved
ones in all my lack of splendour while my bad
imitation of a pompadour drives them nuts

All they'll see that day would be a pall of pink - &
by the way, today I suffered the heartache of work
badly done since kind Mother Superior sent me the
wrong templates in the absence of Mother Abbess;
thus I lost all courage and trust, no hope on the
power of Wisdom left, wallowing in self-pity -
but ins spite of all that, here I am

Creating terrifying heartburn by eating chips, it's
almost as good as self-flagellation - though my
allergic reaction is worse since I lose my mind,
remaining in a doldrums-state until the more
rational faculty - or part of it - returns…

by Margaret Alice Second

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