Prayer to Persephone

The Rape of Proserpina by Bernini
Close up of The Rape of Proserpina by Bernini

Every once in a while I find a passage that deeply affects me. In working on our new book, Persephone’s Orchard by Molly Ringle, I happened upon this dark poem by Edna St. Vincent Millay.

Be to her, Persephone,
All the things I might not be;
Take her head upon your knee.
She that was so proud and wild,
Flippant, arrogant and free,
She that had no need of me,
Is a little lonely child
Lost in Hell,—Persephone,
Take her head upon your knee;
Say to her, “My dear, my dear,
It is not so dreadful here.

I was recently asked if poetry written by women was regarded as being whiny or irritating. Anyone reading this poem would agree that it is neither and the depth and beauty rivals any poem written – by woman or man.

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