“Negotiating With Theia Mania” by Zana Ali

Yes, I cannot deny Your divinity:
You’re always hot honey first, then wine,
stealing into my blood like the gods would prophets,
but help me understand more than this, more than
the damage of Your blessings and the dreams
that You put in my mouth.

Speak my veins aflame instead. Try silk-sharp
and storm-tender. Sing off this aching that isn’t ache
until I unlearn this burden. Take good care
of these sun-bladed shoulders of mine
then for You, I shall rise
as dutifully as the moon above her horizons,
as the perfume above dewy gardens.

Zana Ali is an Asclepian priestess in a past life, residing in the shade of olive trees. Her work has appeared in Twisted Moon, Liminality, and Liminal Stories.