Half Drunk Muse Poetry


Prometheus by Pamela Manasco

Shackled I stand, sag, faltering
as my treacherous ankles buckle
under the weight of the sky.
Never before have I known
the oppressive hang of clouds or
muffled whispers of crashing

waves singing, “pity, pity.”
As soon as the sun breaks
the horizon the eagle comes,
man-sized, arms stretched wide.
Wingtips feather my skin
before the beak spears

my belly. And every time
it feels the same; the pain
never dulls. Bits of liver gulped
down the bird’s throat,
the pause between each bite
as though he savors this delicacy

of god-flesh. Sometimes,
when his palate is sated and feathers
burnished russet, I speak
to the river-eater Ocean,
and try to explain fire to him.
In return he tells me of death,

the way waves wash over a body
and drag it down through seaweed,
skin molting, tiny flakes winding
through water to settle
on the sea floor. I can imagine
the bones, stripped by fish,

gleaming like porcelain.
But still I cannot contemplate the
end, when flailing arms cease
struggling and begin their
mad windmills, lifeless,
toward the deep.

View bio for Pamela Manasco Published in Fall 2005

About HDM

Half Drunk Muse was one of the first poetry ezines. It was founded in 1999 and ceased publication in 2006.

Questions/comments? Email samiller@halfdrunkmuse.com.