Margaret Atwood on TVO 2008-11-01

I had been looking for this poem for literally years when I came across a TVO recording where she recites it. Atwood’s an intoxicating speaker, but you’ll have to use your imagination unless you can also track the audio down somewhere:

“That grandfather clock that was too large for the shelf, so it stood 90 years on the floor
Was brought from the shop on the day that the grandfather was born and went
Tick tock; tick tock
90 years without slumbering
Tick tock; tick tock
His life’s seconds numbering, just like a heartbeat
But it stopped
Never to go again
When the
— I learned some memorable songs in grade three.”


Author: Milan

In the spring of 2005, I graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in International Relations and a general focus in the area of environmental politics. In the fall of 2005, I began reading for an M.Phil in IR at Wadham College, Oxford. Outside school, I am very interested in photography, writing, and the outdoors. I am writing this blog to keep in touch with friends and family around the world, provide a more personal view of graduate student life in Oxford, and pass on some lessons I've learned here.

2 thoughts on “Margaret Atwood on TVO 2008-11-01”

  1. I just love the way she says “the story of Scrooge is, after all, an outdated children’s tale and we must get back to ‘grown-up real life'”.

  2. “In his recreational tastes, he’s much like Machiavelli’s Renaissance prince: though he doesn’t poison people. Or, not directly. He only poisons them as a regrettable but inevitable side-effect of cost-benefit-analysis: it would cost too much not to poison them.”

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