"The difficulty of literature is not to write, but to write what you mean; not to affect your reader, but to affect him precisely as you wish." ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Pygmalion's Sweeper

I wonder about Pygmalion's wife.
Not that I should even care,
I just sweep his shop for an honest price,
ivory dust in my clothes and hair.
But first he sighs for almost a year
over this beautiful statue he made,
and then a look-alike bride appears
and the statue is gone, so, quite a trade.
He says they're happy. She says little,
but every day she follows him in
and watches him work with gauge and chisel
and touches her face like she’s feeling her skin.
And a fine white dust drifts down like snow

And I sweep it up for her after they go.

~ Tamary Shoemaker
(From a prompt at NaPoWriMo to write a poem in the voice of a minor character from a fairy tale or myth.)


  1. This is my favorite so far. I especially love the last two lines. Haunting.

  2. Thank you! Halfway through the poem it took a different turn than I had planned, but I like it.