Moon Goddess and the King of the Underworld

(Mayan Pottery Figures – National Gallery)

He grins.
No, leers the better word here. All the lust
his steaming underworld can muster frames
his sly, salacious face. It isn’t just
his leering grin, the creeping hand wrapped round
her ample shoulder. Now look closely – there’s
an arrogant self-confidence – that foot he’s thrust
across the way she faced.  She’ll turn of course
and follow him. There’ll come a time, though, when
his foot will fail him – she’ll escape and light
our upper world awhile. But then she’ll wane
and meet that waiting face and foot. She’ll leave
her night-times to the stars and then descend
through endless sulphureous corridors and breathe
his dismal kingdom’s toxic fogs again.

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