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the madrigal, volume v

Riverbed Aubade

by ieva dapkevicius

In the dimness of dawn where stars like to linger,
I rose and went to the river to be dressed in its mist,
to bathe in the first gold of the day and be kissed
by the blue lips of the morning, to forget my hunger.

My legs joined the ranks of submerged tree trunks
and the whispering reeds and the dark river-grass;
my hands cut the current, two silver-backed fish
tossing up in the air a rainbow shower of glass,

and the arc of my arms was the moon, or a bow
setting loose an arrow like a singular wish —

Among water-snakes I swam, formless and free,
eyes open in the cold and green and mute undertow,
and I could not tell you whether I was myself, at last,
or the furthest thing from myself I could possibly be.

In the deepest wellsprings of my soul, I am still there.
I have yet to come up for air.

Ieva Dapkevicius is a poet and scientist. Her first publication was a short fairy tale, at the age of nine. More recently, her poetry has been published in Ink Drinkers Magazine, Celestite Poetry, Diet Milk, and in the Renard Press New Beginnings anthology. In 2021 she founded the Orangery Literary Society. She currently lives on a tiny island in the middle of the Atlantic.

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