The River Styx’s Reverie

I could never cast my shadow to the dark

or light without losing sight of the seams

that allowed me to hold light and the dark

in the first place. When I cast my memories

to the fire, they simply resurface in purple smoke,

leaking into the open space, paralyzing, prophesizing,

developing in pressure and simmering

in seething backdated


I am unsurprised by what I have to give

to allow its peaceful succession: hot air, blood,

and a burning branch.

Taya Boyles is a Richmond-based writer, a woman of color, and an undergraduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University pursuing a B.S. in English. These poems explore rememory, resilience, and connection. Instagram: @tayatheauthor Tiktok: @tayabtheauthor