‘Results of Your Quiz: Which Survivor of the Trojan War Are You?’, Hayley Stone

Illustration © 2018 Katharine A. Viola



 [ Survivor, © 2018 Katharine A. Viola ] YOU ARE…

HELEN

holding the ash of Troy in your lungs,
trying to breathe farewell to the lover you left
hanging
on the city gates.

They will call you
faithless
and late at night
when your husband comes
to you, striking his body
against yours like a match
you will wonder
if they are right.

CASSANDRA

watching the sails of Greek ships snap
in the wind of your dreams, forever
working your jaw toward a scream
no one will hear.

In your bed, instead of a girl
they will find the impression
of a girl, your sheets soaked
in sweat, a body-sized bruise
left in the linens.

BRISEIS

kept like a fine piece of armor:
used
spat on
worn until bloody, a possession
to make other men jealous.

Your body is an inheritance,
grabbed by the next man
who thinks this story is his.
You’ll try to love that one, too.

HECUBA

howling to the gods
on all fours, praying
to join the ones they took,
unable to make sense
of the slaughter.

Feasting upon the scraps
of your own mind, how quickly you forget
the gods don’t throw bones
they make bodies.

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© 2018, Hayley Stone

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