Sisyphus Decides

By Ciarán Parkes

SisyphusSisyphus decides—why not—

to let go of the stone he’s been rolling

up a hill for what seems like forever.

.

He falls back, onto the long grass, noticing

the deep groove his stone has made

in the hillside, remembers

.

how he would always get so far and then

it would somehow slip his grasp, start rolling

back the way it came, to wait for him

.

at the bottom of the hill. Now it tumbles

over a field he’s never seen before,

getting smaller, disappearing

.

into the blur of distance. He knows

this is hell he’s in, no doubt of it

with all the treasure here, the brightness

.

dragged down from the upper world and spread

out like scattered flowers and all the people,

doomed to torment, misery, the loss

.

of everything they’ve ever loved but still

looking, for the moment, almost cheerful.

.

Ciarán Parkes lives in Galway, Ireland. His poems have appeared in a number of magazines, including The Rialto,The Frogmore Papers, and The SHOp.

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