Circe (_honeyspider) wrote in __aeaea,

To The River - Jessica Paige Wick

He said come to the river,
the wet, wild water that is black as a mirror
with nothing to show.
He said come to the river,
the dirt-dank river, by the dew-spangled banks
of the murmur and flow.
He said come to the river.
And I came to the river.
I came to the river, with a ribbon in my hair,
with a tune on my tongue,
with a name that he gave,
with my red shoes tied,
with my milk and my bread,
with a stone in my pocket,
with my heart, not my head,
with my knee-socks high,
and my bed unmade.
He said take your red shoes off,
leave your buttons undone.
And he kissed me by the river
until there was blood.
And the river took my ribbon,
which fled the current like a snake.
And the river took my tongue,
and the river took my name.
He took from me the tune I knew;
And the river made my bed.
He said come to the river,
the wet, wild water that is cold as a hand
with no blood to warm.
So I came to the river,
and I stay by the river, by the silt-silked shore,
by the stone that I slipped on,
by the fern-beds so dark,
by the buried red shoe,
by the salt stain I made,
near the road that I left
that leads to my bed.
And I know I am dead but I still cannot rest.
And I'm hideous and hair-thatched
because I must be trash
for him to throw me to the river
like a used cigarette.
Fish have skimmed flesh from my jaw;
they've nibbled with sharp teeth.
My finger-bones lie tangled, far
away from here, my ankle bones
are further still, my smashed hips
are the dirt . . .
He said come to the river
so I stay by the river, by the sopping wet earth,
yes, come to the river, boys,
with no ferns in your hair,
come to the river, please,
and warm my bed.
Tags: jessica paige wick

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