Monday, October 30, 2017

From the Vaults: Turns, Twists; Lost Things

Turns, Twists; Lost Things
By Alexandra Seidel

Around the first corner--left--
you find the sylph that governs the western winds
hair and limbs spelling out abandon

the sylph--neither man nor woman--
tells you a story
and half of that is lost on the breeze

another left
and a stone found lying on the ground
plain as onyx or jade

too heavy for your pocket
but warm in your hand
--some stones hold breath or life--

Your third turn is a right
and almost finds you tumbling down a well
set like a grave into the ground

the echo haunts you as you retreat
already lost. You take
another right (which might be left)

and find a beggar, open-handed
squatting there, eyes staring empty
you part with the warm stone

and you go right again
there is a dark cup
brimming with wine

thirst makes you drink (thirst? really?)
Back again and left
scattered peacock feathers on the floor,

and the shed scales of a snake, a leopard's skin
you take the skin and take a right
warm cake awaits

fresh from the oven that you cannot see
baked by no-one, filled; you lick
warm berry juice from your fingers (berry juice? really?)

and then again you turn--right or left, no matter--
and find a bed or a bench or a throne; a hat
or a crown; more warm things

filling your stomach
and the leopard's spots on your skin
and all the walls around you softly closing in


This poem was first published in 2010 by Labyrinth Inhabitant Magazine which is unfortunately a dead market now. If you enjoyed the poem, do click on the woman in white to the right, she'll lead you straight to the Tip Jar. Thanks!

No comments:

Post a Comment