alter ego.


In an old bed
my eyelids rest; the breath of Israeli
in my blood, I never thought
I’d have to cross this bridge

and I might see you
your alter ego,
and he dies again;

the Prometheus death fit for humankind,
take it then
take it and see how we are born,
see how we’ll die.

I am a woman now,
last a child when I saw you in the casinos
as the moon fed into the phantasmagoria,
and the sun settles on my ancient father’s bones.

women in their stone
had quiet madness, like me,
I close my eyes.


At midnight
the smoking glistens
sometimes, I die
I should have known better
I’ll see you again; New England should depress me;
babies grown, remembering
Meerschaum in your mouth

but I loathe the perfume on your skin,
and your voice, most of all; a glorying in the first kill
in which you are born; the winter. I should have known
this would come, why be foolish,

I’ve known this man
hanging his stones,
kick them, kick them, and the moon skims my words
but humankind is not (not man or woman),
fit for the Prometheus death

you are.

© 2021 Pseudopsychosis All Rights Reserved.

Written for the dVerse prompt 4/27/21: Write a poem about bridges OR write a Puente.

4/29/21: Reposted for the dVerse OLN.

5/3/21: Reposted for PYM Go Dog Go.

5/6/21: Part two to Alter Ego written for the dVerse prompt: The writing challenge is to write a palinode. This can be in relation to a poem you have written before (please link or include prior poem), or as part of a poem.

86 thoughts on “alter ego.”

  1. I think about the bridge of life and death when I read your poem. And also I like how a country can find its way, like an identify with:
    In an old bed
    my eyelids rest; the breath of Israeli

    The quiet madness of the woman is impressive.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. The first stanza and crossing the bridge, made me think of crossing the Red Sea, especially with the use of the words “Israeli and in my blood.” Not sure if it was meant as a biblical allusion, but it sparked it, anyways! haha! The idea of an alter ego plays well with the contrast in imagery one one sees throughout. 💕

    Liked by 2 people

  3. A poignant poem, Lucy, deeply personal and yet so relatable. My favourite lines:
    ‘…the moon fed into the phantasmagoria,
    and the sun settles on my ancient father’s bones’
    and the phrase ‘women in their stone had quiet madness’.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I wonder so much about the bridges we might cross to find another self. I love the thought of being a Prometheus… and the thought of having to suffer eternally for the betterment of humankind.

    But thinking again, maybe the Gods have brought us climate change as a revenge for the fire he gave us.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Respectfully applauding your continued work. Fantastic. Lunar imagery and dreamy phantasms will always win me over, but fiery deaths of alter-egos and past selves? You have me ensnared.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Interesting and intriguing as ever, Lucy. I like the way you are always reaching and some stellar lines here, scattered throughout…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This is one beautiful, reflective piece. It seems to be about a certain woman’s final moments, of contemplation, before the eternal rest of death. However, even not so literal as that, it could also be about the notion of “moving on” past a specific history. Not even as though the woman is laying herself to rest, in death, though just placing a memory to its much needed peace.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I feels odd to comment on this poem again, but since you put in the work for the second stanza, I’ll at least avoid repeating myself: the transition from your usual ethereal, dreamy, heady style into something more physical, more personal is a powerful transcendence – I crashed hard from the world of fitful fantasy to the dirty floors of a well-worn home and the passionate pain of an injured heart.

    Delicious material. Truly delightful.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. A great contrast poem Lucy. Seems the Ghosts from the cemetery never quit haunting us. The second is full of strength and a sense of being ready to move on from an unpleasant past!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. It was a joy to return to your bridge poem, Lucy, and to read your palinode response, especially ‘At midnight the smoking glistens’ and the ‘Meerschaum in your mouth’ (which reminded me of my great-grandfather and his pipe), and the phrase ‘the moon skims my words’.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. A great answer to your first poem, and you really cinched it with those final lines. I don’t know what the subject has done to deserve such hatred, but it must have been something pretty bad…

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I still haven’t found a proper skeleton for working in through this verbal cages, but the difficulty suggests they are laid with desperate care, else ghosts and demons escape. Prometheus has always meant a guilty figure, theft and killer, audacity for forging weapons and beating the gods with their own fire. A creator-figure but a dangerous one, and in this age more like Saturn, devouring his children.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Lucy,
    As always, you carry me along in the swift tide of your imagery and I am transported to a dreamscape of memory and feeling and semi-savage sensations. Prometheus seems the focal point, the tragic hero with a noble cause, doomed, and you turn the allusion on its head, handing him his entrails for dessert. You’re a dark poetess indeed. 🌹

    Liked by 1 person

  14. My goodness! 💝💝 This is breathtakingly poignant, Lucy. I especially like; “but I loathe the perfume on your skin, and your voice, most of all; a glorying in the first kill in which you are born; the winter.”

    Liked by 1 person

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