Kiran Millwood Hargrave

 

Leda

 

Then: the light opened and closed around her;

slumped angels onto the carpet,

trumpeting grotesquely, their shadows

angled into corners, into anywhere and

anything but that safe, squared certainty.

grew larger and filled the air,

feathered and full-bellied,

web-toed as a demon and hot,

but white. Pure white. And soft.

Then: wings, leaving the darkness

no space, no place not to look

to be sure not to see as they pin her

in her chair and the last of the glare swells up

rears into the serpent neck that snips at her throat

Then: she is absented from herself,

poured, rolled, molten gold like the light at her feet,

shot through with hardening gems, mined roughly

as a coalface, as wholly,

until her thighs chaff with fable.

 

It leaves her opened, gift-like, on the stairwell

her lips bruised, her eyelids split as fruit,

wrists snapped back in greeting or farewell

as seeds aping love take root.

 

 

 

Kiran Millwood Hargrave was born in London in 1990. Pindrop Press published her first full collection, Last March in February 2012. She will be starting a Creative Writing MSt at Oxford University in September 2012. This is her website.

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