I remember when Rapunzel
lived with Aladdin,
magical lanterns alight in her hair,
and Goldilocks was Sindbad’s lover —
so tenderly he took off her dress,
and blew her porridge cold.
Then he went away to sea
to found a heavier city of gold.
A jack-in-the-box drowned
my friend and my phoenix both,
like Henny Penny foxes, on boxing day
but Julnar consoled me –
though the Old Man of the Sea
stole the ebony horse’s joystick,
and thought nothing of blowing
my hat and the goose girl
over the daisy hills and far away.
I loved you, City of the Magic Horses,
where firewood could turn into people
and people could turn into birds,
where Falada breathed heartbreak
even when he was dead, and Julnar
was the lovely Pomegranate of the Sea.
On her feet were sandals of sea glass
and she walked along a field of myrrh.
BIO: Linda Ann Strang lives in Port Elizabeth, South Africa — a region rich in folktales and superstition. Her poems have been published in Electric Velocipede, Aoife’s Kiss and other magazines.
IMAGE: Ballettfigurine zu: Feuervogel, Léon Bakst, 1910