Shining Rock Poetry Anthology

Herodotus, Some Fishy Centuries Later, Gives by Jeanne Larsen

the lie to Homer--Helen & apple-eyed Paris fled,
sans doute, to Egypt. There, a badass king impounded
both swag [cherchez le bling] & blonde. [Immaterial,

plainly, what she felt.] In his Blues City, our gal-pal
stayed 10 years. They still get blamed: a trophy trollop

& bratty lady-gods. That cringeling horn dog, not
so much. [It matters, how we name 'em.] Perhaps this alt
-life gave Helen a break from snatch-grabbing one-percenters.

Sweet. But we know none of 'em wuz poifect, right?
Ms. Goldilocks indictable as any. Almost. 

Worse? Loot-randy Greeks refusing Priam's [opines
not-undoubted Herodotus] hantagawd, not here.
They slavered & laid siege. Worst? One who opted [per
the historian] not for realsies. For the better spiel.

This poem is reprinted from What Penelope Chooses (Cider Press Review, 2019) with permission of the author.

Jeanne Larsen has published three books of poetry, and four novels. She was the inaugural Jackson Professor of Creative Writing at Hollins University.

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