Devon, Sacred Dryad: Of Her Life and Transformation

The Dryad by Evelyn de Morgan (1885)

She grew one hundred years of rain
performing at her window for the lost,
kleptomaniac of loneliness,
she was worshipping there, dancing freely,
her surging gender calling the ever green,
the sick and lame and her children
came under her arms to feed from her —
she remained there, the culture she produced,
the gestures that shielded her
often memorizing where her husband had fled
to study by other hands his infidelities —
men returned like birds to come in by her window
to learn from her the ninth chord of C —

after many lovers she took to bathing alone
playing water on her warbling parts
ululating in extreme unction, flickering in every nerve
her sap running into the chord of C —
he awoke with swollen feet, his shoes would not fit,
after one hundred years he had dreamed of her,
meaning that it was time to return —
pockets filled with gold dust, silver on his back
he walked home remembering her name
but she was not at her window, or the door —
in the sun-room a tree burst the roof
wooden-thighed, bark-skinned, lushly leafy ears,
the pavements of her feet on ample boughs
roots around the caressing bed
growing apples for men, pears for children

[The six non-binary writers work in their one person: J. Summer Jones, Saint Jerusalem, R.R. Cyprian, Johnny G. Carmody, Marine Stepanova, Ronnie Romanowski, form the New Festival Theory crew. They have published two books: The Big Book of Canadian Poetry (Augustine Hand Press, 2011) and Incantations from the Republic of Fire (2013) and continue to work on poetry in the rich ground of one of North America’s most diverse cultures, Winnipeg, Canada. Recently: M. Stepanova will be published in the international Selkie Resiliency Anthology and Ronnie Romanowski in Solum, and Saint Jerusalem in Tempered Runes Press’ first publication and Passenger’s Journal.]