Poetry Shelf Monday Poem: Melinda Szymanik’s ‘The Meaning of Life’

The Meaning of Life

I am not here

I am here

I am not here to ask why I am here

I am here to find answers

I am not here for you

I am here for me

I am not here to demand meaning

or faith

in anything except myself

I am here the only thing I can be sure of

and here I am not so sure

When I am no longer here

the Earth may show as little

or as much care

as if

I was never here

Melinda Szymanik

Melinda Szymanik is an award-winning writer of picture books, short stories and novels for children and young adults. She was the 2014 University of Otago, College of Education, Creative New Zealand Children’s Writer in Residence, held the University of Otago Wallace Residency at the Pah Homestead in 2015, and was a judge for the 2016 NZCYA Book Awards. Her most recent book is My Elephant is Blue (Penguin, 2021).

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