Penelope Reworks Her Threads


Say I was faithful.

Say I was clever enough
to hold a rock
watered on all sides
to benefit your name.

Say I knew your faith
rested between your legs.
Say your tears wet your cheeks
like any child’s.

Say among men, you thought
of me.

Say I am a liar.

Say I was faithful,
The only option
for a woman bound to a man
wily as you.

My tears burned
like wax down the night candle.
Among women, I thought
many things not you.

There are battles and battles.
Say the killing kind carries
more import.

Say monsters make the better myth.

I was faithful
to my chance of immortality.

The weeping wife who survives.

Say I proved my need of you.
You would not be wrong.

Your name lost served me better.

Say I am a liar.
I was clever enough
to craft decades to my advantage.

The indefinite wait gave more
worth than the return.

ZYZZYVA, No. 118, 2020