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Monday, April 19, 2010

On Your Way - a poem by Rae Armantrout

On your way to The Sea
of Reeds you will meet the

Soul Devouring Demon.
You’ve heard it all before

and you believe it. Why not?
Why would they lie? You

must wear the beetle amulet
to avoid being consumed.

But it’s also true that you
can’t really know until it’s

actually happening. So you
have a sort of knowledge

which, even if later confirmed
in each detail, is still

not real knowledge. He will
weigh your heart and,

if it’s too heavy, you’ll be
swallowed up. What is this

extra element that is mingled
in when you arrive at the

ordained spot?

From “Versed,” by Rae Armantrout, published by Wesleyan University Press. Copyright 2009 by Rae Armantrout.

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