mary o’melveny

An Apple in her Hand

Eve was always our first
object lesson.
I have always imagined
that leering snake sated
with laughter at how easy
it was to spoil everything,
his forked tongue a fulsome
symbol of desire gone wrong,
pain filling in the blanks.
Think of how she had to slink
away from paradise
naked and bewildered
all for the sake of one
taste of some carnelian
sheathed fruit, spitting out its
seeds as she hurried away
from light’s visible spectrum
toward a world filled with
violence and danger,
her tongue consumed by flames.

Mary K O’Melveny is a retired labor rights lawyer living in Washington DC and Woodstock NY.  Her poetry has been published in various print and on-line journals and blog sites and has won recognition in poetry competitions (2017 winner, Raynes Poetry Competition; 2017 Finalist, Pangaea Prize; 2018 Finalist, Tom Howard/Margaret Reid Poetry Contest; 2018 Honorable Mention, Writers Digest Poetry Competition (Non-Rhyming Category) and short list, 2018 Fish Publishing Prize.)  Mary’s first poetry chapbook, "A Woman of a Certain Age" was published in September 2018 by Finishing Line Press.