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"A Fickleness of Prophecy"

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The seer Tiresias proclaimed me
     the flame-haired Creonide,
     Pyrrha of Thebes,
         whose feet shall follow
         in the footsteps of Ino.
But when will my feet
     land on that path?
When will my journey
Is this why Hermes has come?
     I can't breathe.
The god has stolen my breath.
At my thought,
     Hermes shrugs,
         a fluid gesture,
         to match his flowing steps.
"Prophecy is fickle.
The words of a seer
     as much as they reveal.
Tell me,
     Young Pyrrha,
     have you considered,
         that Ino's footsteps
         may lead only
         to some Minyan cliffside edge?"
A chill descends my spine.
My pace grows heavy,
     as if my feet
     are made of lead.
I struggle
     to keep up
     with the god.
"But I'm not one to say."
     Hermes waves
     his snake-wrapped staff.
"My brother is the expert
     in visions and signs
while I just flit about
     on other chores."
My feet
over a rough patch of road.
     My lip
     between my teeth.
A tang of coppery blood
my tongue.
     I fight
     to keep control
         of the madness.
         of my curse.
"As you say, Lord Hermes."


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