As we enter December’s mouth
I leer into the canal of death, dip my toe to see if it will freeze
if my immortal self will cease. All those grayed faces pass
and reflect my eternal loneliness.
Hades takes little interest
in my walks along Styx. He governs from a glass office,
comes to bed late, carries on the façade
of “together.” Behind our backs they call us dread, I cannot
blame them. This barren hell is less than
a wasteland; it’s like a strip-club with the soundtrack
on repeat. Sometimes I look twice to see if his horns
have shrunk, or if his skin has cracked in a new pattern.
He never changes. I like to distract myself with new gods
and adore pictures you’ve sent me. I invent new ways to lose time.
How much easier it would be
to live among mortals, to find faith
in books and candles. I wait
for Spring to return what’s left of me.
Would you mind asking Hermes to deliver my sandals?
Bernadette McComish earned an M.F.A. from Sarah Lawrence, and an M.A. in Teaching English as a Second Language from Hunter. Her poems have appeared in The Cortland Review, Hospital Drive, Slipstream, Storyscape, Rag Queen Periodical, Flapper House, DeLuge, New Millennium Writers, and Peregrine. Her collection The Book of Johns was recently released by Dancing Girl Press. She teaches High School in Los Angeles, and performs with the Poetry Society of New York curing one human at a time with words and glitter.