Monday, April 25, 2016

NaPoWriMo 2016: Day 16 - Girl, Missing

The Almanac Questionnaire answers I put down for today's prompt somehow reminded me of the myth of Eurydice and Orpheus, where Orpheus tries to get Eurydice out of hell and into the land of the living, but fails because he turns back to see if she is following him. It made me wonder what would happen if Eurydice lost her I did a modern version of Eurydice and Orpheus, from Eurydice's point of view.

#16: Girl, Missing
I've had strange dreams lately.
Most times I don't remember them but this month, I do.
Cave. Always a cave, a dark one with a light at the entrance
And flute music piping, like a flutter of lovers' kisses.
There's melancholy in those notes
Despite the laughing, rippling melody -
Something yearning, even desperately sad, that's hidden
Under the surface.
I smell smoke, mingled with the scent of summer flowers
Flowers close enough I can almost reach out and touch them
But all at once the light's cut off as if a steel door's slammed down
And I wake up screaming, "No no, don't look back, damn you no..."
As if someone had just torn my heart out. As if a lover had left me.

Today under my pillow, I found a scrap of paper.
Looks like it might have come from a letter
Or a short note. Most of the writing was too badly smeared
To make any sense of, but I could read the first line:
'Eurydice, please come home'
When I looked out my window after that to see if somehow
The rest of the letter might be outside
I saw a large black feather on the ground.
It had scarlet edges, and it gave off heat and sulphur
As if it were burning in Hell.
A demon's feather. I'd know it anywhere and I don't know how
Or why I should, only that I do.

Eurydice. That's my name.
People ask me why my parents named me that and I shrug and tell them
I don't know. The truth is I can't even remember my parents
Or anything about my past, even though I've tried.
My memory is a blank-wall barricade.
I tried hypnosis and regression therapy last month
That didn't work either, but now that I think back
That's when the dreams started.

When I came out of my very last therapy session

I found pieces of a burning heart in the alleyway
Right behind Dr. Orpheus's office.
Pieces of a burning heart, and some pomegranate seeds.
I picked them up. I don't know why.
I dropped them into the nearest trash, and some pomegranate juice
Got on my fingers. Stained them scarlet.
I must have wiped the juice on my lips somehow
It was sweet-tart, achingly so, like unfulfilled longing.

I don't remember home but for whatever reason
I want to find it. I need to find it
To return, somehow, to this blank canvas in my mind
And paint in what's missing.
Maybe tonight, in my dreams, there'll be no looking back.

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