by Andrea Lam

After W. B. Yeats

Why do you blame me for grasping at chance
When it was offered me, when all my life
By dint of my beauty I was used to advance
Men’s fortune, and I was given as wife
To he who won me by drawing a straw?
Did you forget that I was Spartan-raised,
My long limbs made strong and my feet run raw
On the selfsame track as the boys, not praised
For my fair face but for my speed and skill
In those noble arts that breed men for war?
Why, whose expectations was I to fulfill?
To whom belonged the oath that I forswore?

Andrea Lam works in book publicity. She lives in New York City. You can find her on Twitter at @AndreaNLam. "Helen" is her first published poem.

She says, "As for my favourite fruit, it's mangoes. (Obviously.)"

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