Tag Archive for poe tree

Madam and the Census Man

I find myself reflecting on this Langston Hughes poem a fair bit:

The census man,
The day he came round,
Wanted my name
To put it down.

I said, JOHNSON,
ALBERTA K.
But he hated to write
The K that way.

He said, What
Does K stand for?
I said, K–
And nothing more.

He said, I’m gonna put it
K-A-Y.
I said, If you do,
You lie.

My mother christened me
ALBERTA K.
You leave my name
Just that way!

He said, Mrs.,
(With a snort)
Just a K
Makes your name too short.

I said, I don’t
Give a damn!
Leave me and my name
Just like I am!

Furthermore, rub out
That MRS., too–
I’ll have you know
I’m Madam to you!

This is exactly how Facebook makes me feel.

Thought for the Day

And her voice is a string of coloured beads,
Or steps leading into the sea.

– Edna St. Vincent Millay