The Goddess Of Death Wishes Otherwise

by Wendy Howe

And so my sea­son comes ear­ly, hills
all pol­ished with its glaze, cauldron-pour
of heavy sleet. They gleam
like the skulls I will scour and stack
along the gar­den’s landscape.

How many will die this year?
Even I don’t know that number.
It’s hid­den in stone, leaf or quill
left bird-fall­en where a high­er god
might use it to etch
a rosary of blue veins
along my breast, his mor­tal count
blurred under the skin. 

Some vil­lage women say
I am giv­en shad­ow wings like the crow,
but mine are a tan­gled fray
of roots. With them I hover
in this cold sky undulating
songs of death.

I am tired of being that wild harp,
that wash line of lament
on which the sol­dier’s wife
poignant­ly hangs her heart. So please
ban­ish the Win­ter moon.
Resus­ci­tate Indi­an Summer
and as her bot­tle brush sweeps
away those par­ti­cles of frost,
let me stay long enough
to love a man and car­ry his seed
not his migrat­ing soul.


Wendy Howe is a free lance writer who lives with her part­ner in the high desert of South­ern Cal­i­for­nia. She has trav­eled the hills, canyons and coast­line of the Pacif­ic includ­ing the islands of Oahu and Maui. She also trav­els through time, myth and his­to­ry as a men­tal shape-shifter, a poet. Her works have been pub­lished in diverse jour­nals includ­ing Flut­ter, Stir­ring, A lit­er­ary Col­lec­tion, Black Mail Press, Sage Trail, Soundzine, Tongues of The Ocean, The Red Riv­er Review, The Vic­to­ri­an Vio­let Press, The Ancient Heart, The 3rd Muse, Eclec­ti­ca, Gob­lin Fruit, Sot­to Voce, Mi-Poe­sias, South­ern Ocean Review, Poet­ry mag­a­zine and three recent antholo­gies explor­ing myth and wom­en’s issues which include; Lilith, Post­cards From Eve and Tip­ping The Sacred Cow.  


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