Her Epic Quest

On the day she raised a hand to her liquor-fisted father,

the treasure map appeared like magic, dotted lines looping

from there to where an X marked the spot farthest from

the beatings she would staunchly refuse a berth in the

warehouse of memory, though her dreams left the back

door ajar. With the first step she was out, away, and gone.

As in all epic quests, there were talking beasts and god-sent

friends, a ship of fools — forgone husbands at the oars,

and children she adored who unwittingly pulled her off

course for the decades it took to mother them up to lives

of their own. By then the map was mislaid, and a forgetting

fog rose to steal away the part of her that wished to travel on,

yet even as she sat unspeaking, staring into the distance

unblinking, with a brow pencil she traced the route straight

from arch to arch and on to a place beside her ear where

the target whispered, “Almost there. Almost there.”

©Dana Hughes 6.21.18

 

2 thoughts on “Her Epic Quest

  1. Oh Dana! Just finished reading this at the General Assembly here in St Louis. Here in the midst of much verbiage spent on so little, your poetry is real. Everything here is merely spectral. Thx, Ted

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