Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Trojan Women

Strips of cloth that bind us

around woulds and mounds of flesh

of the dead and living

like mummies in a womb

faceless voices to the sea

bits of earth in our nails

as we wrap our grief

mothers sisters daughters

leaving ruins of the city

rituals saving our souls.

Ashes to ashes

soil in tongue

taste of Troy

mourning the dead

digging the graves of men

while daughters and sisters

wrestle with the demons

found in obedience and duty and place

lost in the landscape of his


visions of water washing

over rock
            Water wrapping, lapping

           your lips cold as rock

hard hands clap

you back to the living

chasms of holy fire

around you shrouded

limbs too numb

to feel the space

between child

and grace


ask for me tomorrow

invisible behind a mask

digging for relics of what was

beneath the clay

that lays dried

mosaic bits of bones

I swallow with waves

of water on a ship

singing of rocks

leaving Troy

:: note :: . . . the journal writing of a student while working on scene from Gwendolyn McEwen's translation of The Trojan Women . . .