Poem: Poor Bullied Soul

Updated on May 28, 2019
Mark Tulin profile image

Mark is a former therapist who had treated several bully-victims. Now he shares his insights in poetry.

Victims of Bullying: Seeking Help and Staying Strong

School should be a place of learning and fond memories. But for some children, school is neither safe nor pleasant.

Bullying crosses all genders, ages, and socioeconomic groups. Its traumatic effects include depression, anxiety, suicide, poor school performance, behavior problems, physical symptoms, and can set the tone for a troubled adulthood.

The person who is bullied is afraid of exposing his or her tormentors or seeking help for fear of retaliation. With cyberbullying on the rise, and the current political climate that seems to accentuate racial and religious hatred, it has become an even worse problem. But the strength lies in the character of the victims. The victim needs to seek help (parents, school personnel, counselors, therapists) and to keep seeking help even if the first try has failed. Those who are bullied need to know that they will one day have their redemption, and not give up on themselves.

Please read Poor Bullied Soul and hear the reading on my YouTube video at the bottom of the page.

Poor Bullied Soul

He was the fat boy in the hall.

The kid no one wanted to know.

The kid that everyone liked to tease.

The boy who was laughed at

and poked in the chest;

the one who soiled his pants

and dropped to his knees.

He was the vulnerable one back then,

framed for setting off the fire alarm.

He was the kid that took the fall;

the one who got expelled

in the ninth grade

and never did graduate on time.

He was the fat boy in the hall

who used a rescue inhaler

during a game of kickball;

and never could jog around the track

with the rest of his class—

bent-over and out of breath.

He was the kid who got hit in the head

with a snowball,

whose Biology book thrown from a third story


He ate lunch by myself,

and took the long way home

to avoid getting jumped.

It’s a pity, the professionals said,

it was all in his head.

And even his parents

didn’t understand,

thought it was the weight

that was to blame.

No one could see

the fat boy within,

the strong character

that was about to bloom.

Once out of high school,

he’d earn a college degree, a Ph.D.,

that would evolve, change,

and make a poor, bullied soul

beautifully redeemed.

Poor Bullied Soul by Mark Tulin

Questions & Answers


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      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        2 weeks ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Thank you, Tamara. I’m originally from Philadelphia, a city kid. I moved to California in 2012. Absolutely love it here.

      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        2 weeks ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Thank you, Diane. A wonderful complement!!

      • Diane Denison profile image

        Diane Denison 

        2 weeks ago from Cincinnati Ohio

        I am going to call you Doctor Mark. You are a great sociologist. You understand the conflict and pain that twist people up. You guide them to knowing themselves and becoming a individual that helps others. I love this article/poem. I feel your deep feeling for others in your writings.

      • Rhyme Vine Poetry profile image

        Tamara BBYCGN 

        8 months ago from Uninhabited Regions

        This is a poignant and deeply moving poem, Mark. Lovely profile picture, BTW. Somehow, I thought you were in Britain, and yet your profile says you are in good ole’ California! Like, so cool, dude...

      • Asad Dillz profile image

        Asad Dillz Khan 

        9 months ago from United Kingdom

        A beautiful and well written poem Mark, You painted every thing in your words very well. Great Job!

      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        10 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Thank you, Brenda for your comment. I wonder if it’s even harder for adult bully victims. I’ve treated adults being harassed and bullied at work, It’s awful.

      • Brenda Arledge profile image


        10 months ago from Washington Court House

        You dud a wonderful job penning this poem about bullying.

        It is so sad teenagers/children must endure this torment. Even as adults it is quite difficult.

        In today's age the bullying goes cyber in an instant making it tremendously hard for one to deal with...so many committing suicide.

        I also enjoyed your reading at the end.

        Great job!

      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        10 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

        You’re so right, Genna. Besides being a cyber-bully, that image of Trump stalking and posturing in back of Hillary during the debates will forever stick in my mind. He demonstrated for millions of TV viewers how to be a pathetic bully. Sad, stuff. But bullying never pays off in the end.

      • Genna East profile image

        Genna East 

        10 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

        Bullying -- cyber or otherwise -- is on the rise. What a terrible legacy for us as a society. At the risk of inviting criticism over a political issue, our own President embarks on a kind of cyber-bullying almost on a daily basis. What kind of message does that send to our youth? Your poem and striking video are both sad and inspirational. Thank you for calling attention to one of the most important challenges we face in such a meaningful and honest way.

      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        10 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Tim, that’s a good point about nerdy kids. They can deal with bullies in a shrewd way and sometimes to their advantage. Reminds me of the character on Billions, Taylor, and how he/she uses brains and wile to fight a powerful stock market bully. Outsmarting bullies can be done!

      • Tim Truzy info4u profile image

        Tim Truzy 

        10 months ago from U.S.A.

        Hi, Mark, I was a book worm, and got teased for it as a kid. However, as I reached high school, the jocks and tough guys liked having a nerdy guy to help them learn lessons. It helped I participated in track and I could write rap lyrics that would give LL Cool J. a run for his money.

        I'm sharing all of this to let you know: I understand the plight of the bullied child and I always kept something in mind dad would tell me on those bad days as a kid: "Son, the nerds run the world and you want to be able to chat with them or be one of them. Keep some tough friends, though."

        Thanks for reminding me of my dad's positive words in your well written poem. I work everyday with children on social skills because they have to learn how to be compassionate from us.

        Respect and admiration to a shining beacon on this site,


      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        10 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Thank you, sknzuza. Much appreciation for your kind words.

      • sknzuza profile image


        10 months ago from SOUTH AFRICA

        Great one Mark, the world needs more poets like you . People who use their talents or skills if you will to protect the vulnerable victims who bottle in their wounds. Thank you for taking action against bullies .

      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        10 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Thank you, Lorna.

      • Lorna Lamon profile image

        Lorna Lamon 

        10 months ago

        Such a thought provoking poem. Sadly I see the results of bullying first hand and know how destructive it can be. Your poem is uplifting.

      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        10 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Thanks, John. Too often, these kids slip through the cracks because they are passive and fearful. Teaching compassion in schools should be a priority instead of worrying about getting into the best college.

      • Jodah profile image

        John Hansen 

        10 months ago from Queensland Australia

        A well-written poem Mark, and you captured well what a bullied child may go through. Bullying especially cyber-bullying is one of the worst aspects of society today. If the victim is strong enough to survive it they tend to grow up resilient and strong but some, unfortunately, are broken by it.

      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        10 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Thank you, Red. It is nice when people can overcome a major childhood problem.

      • Mark Tulin profile imageAUTHOR

        Mark Tulin 

        10 months ago from Santa Barbara, California

        Thank you, Ruby. I hope we can raise our children with more compassion.

      • ZxRed profile image

        Red Fernan 

        10 months ago from Philippines

        I am glad it’s a happy ending!

      • always exploring profile image

        Ruby Jean Richert 

        10 months ago from Southern Illinois

        This brought tears as I read your sad poem. I'm listening to your poem as I type. I see this abuse often as I watch today's kids. I'm glad you wrote that he rose above being bullied. Wonderful read!


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