Hemera Rises

by E. Kirsch

Tonight, the clouds look like Hecate's ghosts. Muttering, gray translucent whiffs, they sway to the melody of something deep and something dark. The moon is a white rock on Erebus' shoulder- so large and holy.

The woods. They say don't wander too far into the woods, where those ghosts can't hear you and the moonlight won't trace you a path. In the black crowd of trees there's something waiting. Don't go to the where the siren is singing; don't go where even the jackals are afraid to be.

The streets. Where the damp yellow lamps shine, where the only thing to worry about is what can be seen and heard. There are bars and late food vendors and men trying to make a buck for their next beer. They all drift to the melody, endlessly.

Go down between the smell of strange aromas floating through empty space: fresh grass, vomit, and the late restaurants, there is something more.

I love with a deep sympathy. I can forgive the night for its transgressions. I smoked a clove and walked and smoked and thought and walked. The world has changed and the fundamental truth, that we are reducible to spatial extensions, isn't so fundamental.

Here's what's true. Erebus isn't in the sky, but here and there and surrounding every inch. Hades is watching, looming in the overdrawn shadows and beyond shallows of the alleyways.

And somewhere, there must be Persephone, and I could save her if I only knew where to look.

Things are changing: from concrete to gold to silver to nothing. Quickly I am expanding into a new space. I am much more minimal.

Hemera rises, shining against Erebus. She's against the intuition, and the fear, without sympathy. She rises with color, oranges and yellows. They contrast and extinguish the darker blues. Now I know what's here. Around me there are buildings, and trees, and air between objects, and nothing more.