Hamartia

Alani Hicks-Bartlett

These are the things they whispered when they said
The epic deeds are gone and left here are
The traces of the banquet, bones of dead.
Before the lightning struck and Fortune fled
The women sang with golden eyes cast far.
These are the things they whispered when they said
That war and fear came with the wedding bed;
The feast failed fast before its blackened star
The traces of the banquet, bones of dead.
The ruin brought with soldiers’ heavy tread
The shattered urns, the bloodied doors ajar
These are the things they whispered when they said
The women smote their hands but not one fled,
Their voices, shrieking, low and thick with tar
The traces of the banquet, bones of dead.
The groomsman’s blackened eyes rolled in his head
His falling body adding to the mar
These are the things they whispered when they said
The traces of the banquet, bones of dead.


Alani Rosa Hicks-Bartlett is a writer and translator from the SF Bay Area. Her work is forthcoming or has appeared in The Stillwater Review, IthacaLit, Gathering Storm, Broad River Review, ellipsis...literature & art, The Fourth River, and Mantis: A Journal of Poetry, Criticism, and Translation. She is currently working on a novel set in Portugal and a collection of villanelles.

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