The Underworld

October 15, 2015

Original

Laurel Dixon lives in Lexington, Kentucky. She won first place in The Carnegie Center’s LGBT Writing Contest for her story “How to Fall in Love with Straight Girls,” and her poetry has been published in Tobacco Magazine, Words Dance Magazine, Pollen, and The Legendary. She spends most of her time writing, gardening, and drinking too much coffee.

Lovelier than you would imagine.

Rimed with soil, the smell

of citrus,

moss, stairs that descend into

the depths of the earth. Great

dark river,

half fog and half water, tossing its

ancient head. Water scent,

taste of cold.

Slip of silver on your tongue, lunar dust,

moon fruits glowing on black

and twisted

trees. The queen of hell in the distance.

Crown of obsidian and gloss,

hair

bleached silver from the shadows.

Long and terrible memory.

Persephone

holds the world above in her teeth

like an orange peel.

She grasps

your hand, tips three pomegranate

pips into your palm.

Reminds you

that it’s your choice to linger

or go on. Watches you

swallow

the last red seeds—burst of saccharine,

wine burn of memory on your restless

tongue.

Kisses your forehead. Clutches you

in her unrelenting arms.

© Laurel Dixon

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