Frances Hatfield

In Issue 7 on August 14, 2011 at 12:58 pm


If you’ve ever burned, whether
for the light you brought or the dark they feared,
it’s in your bones, an obsidian ring
in the record of our lives. They thought
they could be rid of us, but here we are, again
and again,

Our haloes of ash, our sooty eyes,
the soft flames licking our deathless feet
starting small fires in our beautiful footsteps,
and here they are again,
their sulphur breath, their teeming shadows—

O sister, don’t drown your radiance
in a pantomime of kindness,
they’ll still smell your fear and mark you.

Don’t run and hide in your house of sweetness,
you’ll only end up seething
in another kind of oven.

Remember Ariadne, forsaken by Theseus.
It wasn’t his god who set her diadem among the stars,
it was the greater one,

the god we danced with on the mountain,
when we were wild and holy and one,
remember? He came again
when you stepped at last
from your gown
of flesh and flame,

his ivy crown,
his nuptials of rain


Frances Hatfield practices the arts of poetry, depth psychology, and grandmothering in Santa Cruz, California. She is an advanced candidate in analytic training at the C.G. Jung Institute in San Francisco. Her work has appeared in Anthology of Monterey Bay Poets, and Quarry West. She also has a poem forthcoming in Parabola.

  1. Frances,

    I like your poem; it is beautifully evocative with bare bones (apologies) honesty and outlier angst.

    Blake said we mistake God and Satan. He is probably right. Thank you for helping to restore order amid the vagueness, the gradients.

    Eric Silverman

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