• Vol. 08
  • Chapter 12
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Leaving the Key of Life

It was the last thing I left
On your desk
My responsibility
Your vanity

At your easy pleasure
I was that Celtic Princess
Of  your wunderkammer
Then locked in a rusting cage

Hung outside the walls
Of Roxburgh Castle
Peeing down my legs
Under my skirts in summer, winter.

In my head, I had thrown it
Over the fence
I swung it on the heavy gaoler’s bunch
Round my head, whooping

I had tossed it into the sea
For the mermaids to ponder
And danced on the shifting sands
In driftwood smoke curls until sunrise

I had buried it in ancient soil
Delivered safely into the hands of the Gods of Iron
To be unearthed by another
In a better future


Leaving the Key of Life

I silently prised the stiff wire circles
Apart. Until the strip of skin under my thumb purpled  
And I separated you from me on my own plain key ring
Undangling with the silver boot charm from a second Narcissus.