Hecate, as you did for Demeter, do
for these unmothered. Sweep the dead
across the threshold of Dis
into the wings of those who wait,
their talons muddy from the trenches they dug
and filled with wine and flesh to summon
phantom hunger. Suture
Cordelia, Ophelia, Miranda
to their unnamed matrons. Stitch
the rift between Juliet
and Lady C, Perdita
and Hermione. Bring
the mothers of Jessica, Portia, Viola
up from the gut of the earth
into a forest
craquelure with moonlight.
There, in a grotto’s mouth,
above a nest of hatchling snakes, set
my mother and me and my daughters. Plant
our feet on an ormolu mount. Interlace
our porcelain. Let incense climb
our limbs and sash
our waists and curl
through our hair in smoky tendrils, unfurling to the stars.
This selection comes from the book, Titania in Yellow, available from Porkbelly Press. Purchase your copy here! Our curator for this selection is Donna Vorreyer.
Dayna Patterson is the author of Titania in Yellow (Porkbelly Press, 2019) and If Mother Braids a Waterfall (Signature Books, 2020). Her creative work has appeared recently in POETRY, Ruminate, Sugar House Review, Thrush, and Tupelo Quarterly. She is the founding editor-in-chief of Psaltery & Lyre and a co-editor of Dove Song: Heavenly Mother in Mormon Poetry. She has been a Sustainable Arts Fellow at Mineral School Artists Residency. daynapatterson.com
Donna Vorreyer is the author of two full-length collections of poetry: Every Love Story is an Apocalypse Story (Sundress Publications, 2016) and A House of Many Windows (Sundress Publications, 2013), as well as eight chapbooks: The Girl (2017, Porkbelly Press), Tinder, Smolder, Bones and Snow (2016, dancing girl press), Encantado, Illustrated by Matt Kish (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2015), We Build Houses of Our Bodies (dancing girl press, 2013), The Imagined Life of A Pioneer Wife (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2013), Ordering the Hours (Maverick Duck Press, 2012), Come Out, Virginia (Naked Mannequin Press, 2011), and Womb/Seed/Fruit (Finishing Line Press, 2010).
She currently serves as a staff reviewer for the journal Stirring: A Literary Collection and Rhino Reviews. Her poetry, fiction, and book reviews have appeared or are forthcoming in such journals as Sugar House Review, Diode, Waxwing, Juxtaprose, Poet Lore, Border Crossings, Harpur Palate, and Quarterly West, and anthologies such as A Face to Meet the Faces (2013) and New Poetry from the Midwest (2015). Although she does not have an MFA, she gets an education daily in her life as a middle school English teacher.