What They Said When Io Ran – a poem by Rebecca Holland

What They Said When Io Ran

Words liberate
Poetry heals

The sages of the ages past
Tried their best to lock away
The knowledge of what words can do
They should not keep them from you

They will try to chain you with meter
And clip your wings with rhyme
Say that you are not good enough
Because you cannot write like them
Because your iambs are trochees and your lines stumble on broken feet-

But they do not see
That you are writing a new song
They do not see
That a new language is required
To tell the world of how you were
………………But never silenced.

When Io ran, they claimed she liked the chase
When Daphne transformed into a tree
Rather than embrace her rapist
They said, how lovely is the laurel
And used her arms to crown the heads of poets

Daughter of Eve-
Do not let them keep the words.

When they will not let you write
Sing your songs to yourself
And know that
When men have shut their ears
All creation is listening.


Rebecca Holland is a visually impaired Filipino-American writer who lives in Pennsylvania. Her writing is particularly fascinated with the intersection of faith, gender, disability, and race. Her work has recently appeared in The Drabble, Bold Blind Beauty, and CAPTIVATING! She blogs about faith, literature, and disability awareness at BeckieWrites.com

1 Comment

  1. BeckieWrites says:

    Reblogged this on Rev. Rebecca Writes and commented:
    It is always a joy and a thrill to have a poem accepted by a literary magazine. My poem, “What They Said When Io Ran,” was published by the Amethyst Review. The Amethyst Review is one of my favorite literary magazines because it focuses on work that specifically explores the intersection of faith and writing. As a writer, this is one of my favorite themes.

    I am delighted to be included in Amethyst Review and I hope that you will take a moment to explore the pages of their magazine as well as to consider my poem, which I have reblogged here.

    -Rev. Rebecca


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