Thursday, April 2, 2015

Napowrimo #2

This is seriously unfinished, but I wanted to make sure I posted something. I am thinking of continuing this poem, connecting the idea of the speaker as a sea monster to the Andromeda story -- to have her learn that her place in this world isn't one of the destroyer, the monster, but one of a "good" girl, a princess, a damsel. So I have a little work to do here yet! Thinking how I can incorporate that better... But here's what I came up with so far:

Elk Hart Lake, Early Autumn

My father brought me there when I was six
To practice swimming. It was August,
The endless summer fading into dusk.
I spent the day there, no longer a little girl,
but a sea monster, seaweed clinging
to my skin, mud between my toes, and just my eyes
 above the surface,  searching the rocky shoreline
for my next victim, a grasshopper who leapt
too close, a couple fire ants that I could strand
on a leaf and send to sea, an autumn dandelion
growing on the edge that I could pluck
and toss into the placid lake, watch float
into the open water or sink into the mud.
I was lord over the minnows, scooping
One or two up in my hot pink pale,
Pondering their fate – to dump them out
At land or sea? At dusk, the lifeguard
blew his whistle, called me home
to the shore, where I’d return to being small,
my tiny hand swallowed by my father’s
as he tugged me home. Why can’t we stay
all night, I’d ask, my voice all but drowned out
by the cricket chorus all around us. Girl,
haven’t you heard? Sea monsters lurk
in those waters all night. He pointed to the stars,
and on the way home, told me the story
about the girl in the sky, Andromeda,
chained to the shore, awaiting her fate

to be rescued, saved, and swallowed. 

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