Persephone Returns from the Land of the Dead

I smell blooms opening in my wake before

I can see them I squint


peeking from between splayed fingers sun

rendering them red transparent for a moment blood


visible beneath

skin the flesh just flesh again not


girl not goddess

(my name was once maiden) just meat


kneeling down to pick a flower fist

wrapped tight around


the stem a violent pull then it is no longer of the earth

petal by petal I rip it apart shove


a ruby handful into my aching

mouth how I ate of the


land of the dead now I eat of the land of the living

to make the sunshine last


just a moment longer maybe not the spring itself not

physical warmth but the way it makes me feel


embraced held I choke them down

to be loved by a god is to be divine


it is still

not enough never enough never enough


emptiness tells me to be loved half a year feels like the same

thing as being loved with half a heart even if it


is not I know I know I am loved

I am still forcing down flowers chewing and


dreaming that this is finally how to

make myself feel whole

Jazlyn Jacobs is a Jewish-American poet, an Evergreen State College alumni, and was a member of the 2013 Spokane National Poetry slam team. She is currently working on a poetry collection to self-publish.

Bloomsday 2020 @ Spokane

Through Sept. 27
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