Please Visit Our Sponsors

Lyetta Mathews

Location: Scottsdale, AZ
Date of Birth: '52
Published in: VOXPETRII (2x)


Phoebe's Letter

you forget
you are my guardian only.
I was born of fire and hurled
from my dam's home
by a father I do not know.
These faces you see
are his and hers in equal measure,
never yours despite dust
and stony litter. You are a kept woman
but I rest a clean sleep you cannot,
riddled as you are by movement
in your snows, the soaring owl,
the get and begetting of all your kin.
I do not despise you for what you are.
I am fresh, unsullied, my hot hotter,
cold more than you will ever know.
The insistent wooing
of our shared sun can find no way
to seed me as he has you.
There is superiority in this
harsh delineation
of my day and night.
I turn my back to you and see
startling infinity while you knit,
carry water and write ballads.

I write to you just this once,
my one letter home.
There is a bigger world than you,
my foster mum, where things
you fuss over are crisp and holy.
You do not ask what I see,
nor will you hear this.
It is all about you - your faces,
the hungers of your kind,
their passion and inconstancy
applied to me as if I were
the weaker member.
Not one of yours could spend
one night of mine much less
the probing day - Not one face
would I alter to wear one jewel
of all your wet treasure
if such a trade made me haze-eyed
in the night when billion billion names
of God sing in each star's
self-inflicting fire.
The only appropriate response
to what I see is silence
which you cannot enfold.
We shall keep our distances

Gaea's Response

Dear one,
your face cupped
in my cloud hand,
listen to me.
You wear all I give you -
geese, smoke, the new-furled
leaves of cottonwoods in March.
You turn your back to me,
sure your vision
of further families of stars
is to be respected
more than what I see - rising
in your bridal white,
your Gothic time
wreathed in black.
You hate blue, too virginal
you say as if my hues
are worn to wound
your sense of self.
Hear this, daughter.
I turn for you on a spindle,
give you Madagascar
for breakfast
and Galapagos for dinner
and, damned it,
I do it every day.
This is something.
Something always