Author: Katharine Diehl

Mystery juice in the bushes,

tattered condoms, shriveling squids,

swarming urgently through mud.

 

Statue of Artemis; your hand came

away coated with green. You cried

lichen-tears, spoiled your dress.

 

And when you were a girl, the trees

spoke, you said, of loneliness.

The wind was once a rough palm.

 

Contributor’s Notes: Katharine Diehl was born in Brooklyn but dreams of a country escape. Maybe when she am a rich, famous, and successful career poet. She has a B.A. in psychology and has been published in Assisi Journal. She attended the 2012 New York State Summer Writers Institute on scholarship. She blogs about writing, the creative process, and other things at frozenseawriting.tumblr.com.

Listen, I know you

were just thinking about Medea in her

chariot, blazing with her burning

crinoline and lanolin and hair oils.

 

I know you think of her as broad-

shouldered and dark, because it is poetic for

dark ones to go bad sooner, like bruised

plums. Her husband was damnably

evil: stained fingers and a paunch.

 

On what authority do you make

metaphor out of some babies’ stinking

little corpses? She did not act

without precedent. If she’d greased

them when small, slipped them into jars

to squall by the roadside, she’d

be only conventional.

 

Your stupid heroine, in

some Grecian draped business, now

glaring at God because

driving her point (ha!) home has meant

more to her and to you

than the possibility of mercy.

 

Justice is in the end

meted out, even to the well-

intentioned. Some days, you can’t

just do it for yourself.

 

Contributor’s Notes: Katharine Diehl was born in Brooklyn but dreams of a country escape. Maybe when she am a rich, famous, and successful career poet. She has a B.A. in psychology and has been published in Assisi Journal. She attended the 2012 New York State Summer Writers Institute on scholarship. She blogs about writing, the creative process, and other things at frozenseawriting.tumblr.com