Pandora: an Afterthought

by Kayleigh Ayn Bohémier

You dug deep into plant-rich soil,
ripping up strong apple saplings
until you reached Earth's bones.
When beaten, they yielded marrow
more precious than fire and ice.

For my conch necklaces, you traded
amber pendants and silver thread.
I watched you build cities of gold,
burning the hide hut where our child
first cried and clay figurines rested.

When once we had nothing to hide,
jealousy made subtle furies of us all.
In forges, you wrought copper blades
for enemies' throats; on mountains,
ash altars to catch sacrificial blood.

What did you prove on that morning,
pouring dirt-covered stones into my
eager, accepting hands? What beauty
could I have imagined but shy bone
flutes and murmuring conch shells?

The painted dowry jar in my arms
tantalized you, a mystery you never
mastered, gained only through me.
Our son will say it carried plagues,
grandchildren that it concealed pain.

Someday, they will blame sky gods:
I bewitched you through their graces;
my created body was ruin to mankind.
Truthfully, you never noticed my face
until I stole rawhide to bind my hair.

Kayleigh Ayn Bohémier is a library science graduate student. Her poetry has appeared in With Painted Words, Eternal Haunted Summer, and will appear in the next issue of Astropoetica. At her home in the Finger Lakes region, she wanders through gorges and down old railway trails. Kayleigh is not allowed in used book stores without a designated chaperone. Her favorite fruit is the pomegranate, especially whole ones. Taking a pomegranate apart is almost as fun as the Underworld jokes that come with eating it.

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