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I’m Not Anna K
by Venetia Peterson

He said, “Never. Never,”
then he walked away.

I watched
his determined stride
and how the curling snow
erased his steps.

I could have shouted,
“You are a two-faced lover!”
He could have turned to face
his dialectic betrayal.

To find love, its synergy
of life, was all I craved then.

Confused and with a clenched fist
I punched the winter sky
then my chest.
He disappeared into the dismantling wind.

But, I’m not his Anna K.
I won’t listen to train whistles,
the damning gossip circles,
the pull of numbing liquids.

I’m not alone.
Desires are cyclic like the seasons.
I am more than, never, never.

PHOTO: Keira Knightley as the title character in the 2012 film version of Anna Karenina.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: The poem was inspired by Tolstoy’s, Anna Karenina. Tolstoy portrayed his protagonist as a doomed woman, who abandoned her nineteenth century social responsibilities of wife and mother in order to flirt with her true desire, to be loved.  My Anna has a broader horizon. She will build  on her self-worth and not on Count Vronsky’s limited and fearful never, never.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Protecting a gang of sparrows from the neighbour’s yellow cat can be exhausting. In between, Venetia Peterson manages to write poetry and short stories in Toronto, Canada.