Hephaestus

Gabriel Olearnik

Because I was ugly
Because I had clubfoot
(No, a twisted face)
Because the sound of my toys annoyed him
(No, he was drunk)
There was no thought in it
Because there was nothing else to do
And every other possibility in every possible world
Was spent
My father threw me

Once the instep of my foot was utterly steadfast
Hard against the rock, rooted like a mountain
Now my heels float upwards
My hands spinning trapezoids and rhomboids in the sunlight
Each digit flamed with dusky gold
A storm-fall, terrible slipped thunder

The isle of Lemnos, bedded, tender, azure
The shining
The shining
The water hard as diamonds.

Gabriel Olearnik studied medieval history at University College London. He is currently an attorney and practices corporate law.