Put yourself in someone (or something) else's skin and write a poem about the
experience. Who (or what) ever you become, please make that the title of the
I thought, "Piece of cake! A persona poem. I can do this." Then I started to think about whose skin I might choose to step into, and I rapidly came to the conclusion that I do not know enough stories, not enough history. I began to panic, just a little. I made a list, starting with obvious options: Joan of Arc, Penelope.
Then I remembered a poem that I have been wanting to write for months. Here is that draft:
Always the men with their silly ideas—
to taunt the universe and all its gods.
Daedelus left me to tend hearth and well,
stew pot and wine jar, took my shining boy,
his eyes already full of light.
The dawn of my son’s birth my bones
weighed already heavy with grief.
Each day was a wager with sea and sky, the ledge
he would leap from, the height in his heart.
My heart hangs like a stone, my eyes
blind with the wool of my shroud,
and I have no use for my husband,
no need to see the sun.