Tuesday, April 24, 2018

NaPoWriMo Day 21: Narcissus Reborn

Prompt: Try writing a poem that plays with the Narcissus myth in some way. 

I'm playing catch up due to travelling and doctors' appointments outstation, which means that while I had time to think about the prompts, it was pretty futile in terms of what to write. It took a good bit of time, after reading up on the Narcissus story, before it occurred to me that, barring wasting away for love of his reflection and remorse for causing Ameinias' death, the worst thing that could befall him would be to never be allowed to admire himself, or speak of his own perfection - like reflecting things in a mirror. 

And it sort of went from there, although I don't know how successfully that went.


No one tells the rest of the story, the part that came next:
That he was fated to be split in two
Body peeled from soul
Like a muscat grape slipping its skin
Fated to be reborn over and over as both flower
And the spirit of mirrors
Fated to feel the petals of his body wither and fade
While his soul could see the reflections of all others
Except his own, cursed by Nemesis
Nevermore to speak of his perfect beauty.

Who is the fairest of them all, the queen asks.
 The lie burns his throat like bile as he forces bitter words
From reluctant lips, glimpsing briefly, in the face before him
Melancholy Echo’s gaze, now touched by spite.
You, my queen, you are the fairest of them all.


Jane Dougherty said...

This was a difficult prompt because the story of Narcissus is so crappy. Like a lot of the Greek myths, best forgotten I say :)You gave it a good twist.

Shuku said...

Yes I KNOW right? I read all the versions of the legends, and I found it reaaaaally difficult to summon up any sort of sympathy for the lil' blighter. (You're definitely right about a lot of the Greek myths...glad I'm not the only one that feels that way!) Thank you! It gave me a lot of unguilty satisfaction confining him to a mirror in the end.

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