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Clytemnestra's Daughter

by Audrey Reda

Iphigenia, betrayed by blood,
The red of rust that stained
The eastern shores of Ilium.
Receiver of a goddess curse—
A rage that blew your innocence
To fill canvas sails ten years
From the egregious sin
Created by the hand you held
To lead you, sacrifice of kings.

You struggled, pulled against soldiers
Who held you by your tangled hair.
They clasped silver shields—
Bright metal gleamed and shone---
The daggers held up to
A throat that once laughed rich—
Golden as Greek skin
Tanned beneath a summer’s sun.

Jet cascades gripped tight
And arms spread wide
To embrace a windless sky
That offered no sanctuary,
The last blue eyes that locked into yours
turned black—
Cold face the same that soothed night terrors,
Chased sinister goblin’s cackles
From your naïve child’s mind.

Agamemnon lost forever
That title he adored—
Exchanged paternal love
To chase lost pride and rape walled Troy.
Your life his will to give,
Your scream a final dirge,
Crimson drops sprayed upon his brow,
And he sailed, daughter,
Your father no more.