[To wash his bloodied hands, Perseus]Boyer Rickel
To wash his bloodied hands, Perseus placed Medusa’s snake-haired severed head face-down on a bed of river grasses, which hurt them into beauty: coral the nymphs collected for jewelry. No wonder my mother loved the Greek myths best, at home with her youngest in the 1950s. She opened picture books whose bronze near-naked men drove their chariots’ horses— black flame-like abstracts—with snarling dog-faced whips; whose goddesses floated off the pages in togas composed of gauzy swirls. We’d sit on the living room floor turning pages until the window ledge glowed pink—time to set the table for dinner.
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