Tragic Theatre


tragic theatre2

(The Floating  Pavilion, Oneonta  NY,  the 9 pm performance )  

The stage is raised

round and oaken

a wheel on which

fate turns the universe.


The Hellenic figure

kneels at the center– hypnotic

with a rope of  leaves

around her head. Her hair

straight and shining

like the dagger in her virgin hands.


Poised and perfumed

with  bath oil, she prepares

to stab the heart


until a bird flies in

disputing the act, its noble

resolve. Dust flares in the light

along with iridescent wings.


Unlike the  heroine,

her own soul is still

in dispute


wanting its body back,

and uses this place, this raftered ark

to panic.



  1. Hi Sarah

    Thanks so much for your kind words and interest in this poem! As always, I deeply appreciate your perspective and encouragement!

    Take care and stay safe,
    my best always,


  2. Perhaps the bird is acting as deus ex machina? It’s presence certainly disrupts the atmosphere and interrupts the sequence of events.


  3. You make a good point about the role of the bird, Michael . Thanks so much for sharing your perspective and for reading my work I sincerely appreciate it!

    My best,


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