Medusa in the Mirror
Early one morning I look into my mirror,
see a woman, all in all,
reasonably well-preserved, though at this hour
definitely not at her best,
eyes puffy with sleep,
the mark of a pillow on one cheek,
hair flying wild around her face.
I was born alone
alone will die.
Look upon me if you dare
feel feet legs breasts brain
turn into granite cliffs
where eagles soar.
My eyes are embers
My head seethes with writhing vipers.
*First published in the author’s collection The Candlewoman’s Trade, Diehard Press, 2003.
Susan Castillo Street is a Louisiana expatriate and academic who lives in the Sussex countryside. She is Harriet Beecher Stowe Professor Emeritus, King’s College, University of London, and has published two collections of poems The Candlewoman’s Trade (Diehard Press, 2003) and Abiding Chemistry, Aldrich Press, 2015. Her poems have appeared in The Missing Slate, The Stare’s Nest, Nutshells and Nuggets, I Am Not a Silent Poet, Snakeskin, Literature Today, York Mix and other reviews. She is a member of three poetry groups: 52, Goat, and Slant 2015.