Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


Fifteen, Maybe Sixteen Things to Worry About

My pants could maybe fall down when I dive off the diving board.
My nose could maybe keep growing and never quit.
Miss Brearly could ask me to spell words like stomach and special.
     (Stumick and speshul?)
I could play tag all day and always be "it."
Jay Spievack, who's fourteen feet tall, could want to fight me.
My mom and my dad—like Ted's—could want a divorce.
Miss Brearly could ask me a question about Afghanistan.
     (Who's Afghanistan?)
Somebody maybe could make me ride a horse.
My mother could maybe decide that I needed more liver.
My dad could decide that I needed less TV.
Miss Brearly could say that I have to write script and stop printing.
     (I'm better at printing.)
Chris could decide to stop being friends with me.

The world could maybe come to an end on next Tuesday.
The ceiling could maybe come crashing on my head.
I maybe could run out of things for me to worry about.
And then I'd have to do my homework instead.

Credit


From If I Were in Charge of the World and Other Worries . . ., published by Macmillan, 1981. Used with permission.

Author


Judith Viorst

Born in Newark, New Jersey, in 1931, Judith Viorst is the author of many works of poetry and prose both for children and adults

Date Published: 1981-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/fifteen-maybe-sixteen-things-worry-about