Hera's Love Song: To My Husband's Other Women
by Brianna Sulzener
my plums, more than he thought possible.
Your ashy devotee, I’ve eaten both
the apples from your cheeks and sucked the sweet
clean nectar from your blooming eyes. See now
that I have prayed to your long hair: those dark
thick knots that smell like Eucalyptus leaves,
or pale and limp as Mechlin lace, or fried
bright blonde and fucked up in a slept-in bun.
It’s dyed like some cheap cloth and you roll your
own cigarettes. Her shoulders, throat, her odd
perfume. He kissed the tattoo on your thigh,
the hidden one of doves and twisting flowers.
I found your photograph, the one you took
yourself; it’s the most peaceful thing I’ve seen.
I wrote your name in the margin today.
Your names, those lovely one-word poems. Sarah.
Sophia. Shoshanna. Deborah. All those
dull Hebrew flourishes, they look like pressed
blue flowers on my page. To me you are
two hundred happy dresses made from scratch.
I want to dance myself to death with you,
to hell where I can have you, broken brass
bed frame and all. The wallpaper in your
apartment’s peeling off, I saw it in
the photograph. He could have murdered you,
you know. He could have knocked you up. He could
have cut off your curls while you were asleep.
He could have locked you in the upstairs room,
to listen to your footsteps thunder by.
* * *
Brianna Sulzener is a poet living in Iowa City alongside two beautiful lunatics. Her poems have recently appeared in Goblin Fruit and Stone Telling.
What's the most important aspect of a fantasy poem?
An impending sense of doom, though perhaps that applies to poetry in general. In which case, I'd have to say magic, which might also apply to poetry in general. Alright, I'll just say monsters. Monsters and goddesses and extreme bravery.