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your laughter echoes still
in that bright field where you played
so carefree, little goddess
arms white as milk
gathering flowers with your playmates
when the earth shook
and through the crumbling ground
your monstrous lover burst
an uninvited guest
snatching you away
plucking your innocence
as you had plucked flowers
only moments before

how you must have cried out
must have begged for your release

when your mother learned of the abduction
her grief stopped the earth, the moon, the stars in their tracks
the world became eternal winter
there was no consolation, no solace
no moving on

what an unexpected miracle when you returned to us
a gift from the gods

but you are not the same
no longer that bright child
a handful of seeds has sealed your fate
and though all things flourish in your presence
your laughter is colored by that other place, that dark lover
and in your eyes cold winter reigns