It was mother who brought out the piano, who took it to the child in the attic for winter. We could hear him through the ceiling testing the chords, plucking at each sweet key, the sound all milk and moon. We hoped his songs would make father regret. Not just the entrapment but the entire marriage, the mornings he woke us to gather snow for his swollen hands, his aching belly. His liver was just a dead rose then. We tried to salvage the bottles for the child, to let him play with their broken glass. It was storming the night we broke him out, adagio still finishing through the window as we fled like ghosts.
It was I, Your Honor. I who left the marigolds in the sheets of her bed, the mice in her morning milk. You can call it witchcraft if you like. But when the horizon broke open into yolk, she was better for it. She ran for the trees, through poplar and oak, dress waving like all her dead children. She was gone from him, I’ll tell you that. What I do was never spoken of. Just my darkness, how far I was willing to go. Your Honor, she wanted to flee and not be led, world red before her without blood, husband in her doorway with an ax.
-- Meggie Royer is a writer and photographer from the Midwest who is currently majoring in Psychology at Macalester College. Her poems have previously appeared in Words Dance Magazine, The Harpoon Review, Melancholy Hyperbole, and more. She has won national medals for her poetry and a writing portfolio in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, and was the Macalester Honorable Mention recipient of the 2015 Academy of American Poets Student Poetry Prize.