Daphne and Laura and So Forth Poem

Daphne and Laura and So Forth Poem By Margaret Atwood

He was the one who saw me
just before I changed,
before bark/fur/snow closed over
my mouth, before my eyes grew eyes.
I should not have shown fear,
or so much leg.
His look of disbelief—
I didn’t mean to!
Just, her neck was so much more
fragile than I thought.
The gods don’t listen to reason,
they need what they need—
that suntan line at the bottom
of the spine, those teeth like mouthwash,
that drop of sweat pearling
the upper lip—
or that’s what gets said in court.
Why talk when you can whisper?
Rustle, like dried leaves.
Under the bed.
It’s ugly here, but safer.
I have eight fingers
and a shell, and live in corners.
I’m free to stay up all night.
I’m working on
these ideas of my own:
venom, a web, a hat,
some last resort.
He was running,
he was asking something,
he wanted something or other.

Daphne and Laura and So Forth Poem

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