A Prayer to the Mousai at Taughannock Falls

We are far from Helicon here: great vines
feast on weather-worn rocks and climb gorge trees
cascading down crevices glaciers carved.
Once, Thundering Zeus freed his lightning smiths.
The Gods made this place a battleground; Earth
screamed and heaved beneath their massive armies.
You came only after the land knitted
itself together, cloaked by the new moon.
By deep pools where nymphai tie their long hair,
you slept: trees dropped their summer leaves and our
river god quieted the falls, misting
the dark sky to soften summer’s hot night.
Fly once more to the dance groves far from old
hillsides where Hesiod saw your faces.
Here, we have always remembered fresh milk,
amber honey, and the pleasures of song;
our meadows flourish with infant grasses.
Hail to you, daughters of Zeus and lovely
Mnemosyne of the silent lake,
and remember always our Ithaca.

[Kayleigh Ayn Bohémier majored in English at Smith College. Her poetry has appeared in With Painted Words and AlienSkin. At her home in the Finger Lakes region, Bohémier blogs at Kallisti and conjugates verbs in nonexistent languages.]

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