by Kristen Zory King

For Wendy Darling

Wendy-bird you bloomed with adventure, more graceful
than a floating ship, fiercer than a sword fight, a captured
damsel, your cheek flush from fire-lit dances, your smile
brighter than the North Star. Flying through two worlds
Peter offered you the pomegranate seeds of springtime,
not realizing that you are no Persephone, that you are not
the kind of girl caught between the twilight of reality
and the dazzling light of mermaid songs and magic.
He didn’t realize that you, the girl clever enough to catch
a shadow in her hands would never let escape the chance
to flower, that you would never forgive yourself for all the things
you would not become, that you were already full of faith, trust,
and pixie dust. Wendy, I don’t know what compass you used
to get home but I do know this: a life spent in Neverland
would have made you nothing more than a petal pressed between
the pages of a book. And you who raised a whole flock of lost boys,
you who fought pirates, you who silenced Peter with a single kiss,
of course you came home. Of course you were brave enough to grow up.

– – – – –

kristen king
Kristen Zory King is a writer currently based in Washington DC. Some of her previously published work can be found in The Trident, The Inn House Review, Cactus Heart Press and Poetry Breakfast.
(featured image: Kristopher Roller)
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