Persephone drags

her hands along the tunnel wall, casually

staining herself. Her milky skin

illuminates, announces her

among the dead, their skin vague, and grey.


Hades leads his conquest

to a black bed carved from rock

burnished for her arrival.


This is the part where he ravishes her

but watch him hesitate;

she is, after all, Zeus’ daughter.


The fruit gleams

on the nightstand, obvious,

dripping; its split jewels

wink conspiringly.


They fill an awkward minute

with furious small talk,

triangulated, apparent;


until she pulls a strategic

hairpin. Her released gloss

spills across the bedspread.

She picks and wiggles

out a seed, lays it on her tongue


wetly: blush on blush


and as she swallows

her limbs shiver, cooling into argentite—


Elsewhere rages Demeter,

winter cracking with the fury

of a mother whose daughter lies

in the bed of a boy

from the wrong side of the river