Anagolay, Goddess of Lost Things
Anagolay sits on the roof of the world.
A rich man’s garden, thirty stories
above the city. Here are full grown
banyans, roots tangling earthwards.
Vines that cloak the walls green,
blooms sighing seeds on hot winds.
A good spot to survey the sky palaces
and slums, churches and trash heaps.
Anagolay clasps callused hands to worn
knees. Her name sounds on the lips of
women bent in kitchens. What’s lost
by day: earrings, keys, eyeglasses.
Why do mortals never learn from loss?
Every coupling is temporary. A home
does not endure. Few can bear to
focus on the truth, day upon day.
Lost hopes wash out to a city’s gutters,
drown unseen in muddy water.
Night falls. The city is a net woven of
light. What’s lost in the dark spaces?
A woman drawing water from the
pump lost three daughters. Children,
reading by lamplight, lost a mother.
Lost boys, muzzled and prodded
roped and marched in jungle darkness.
Lost girls crying in cages. Anagolay!
I am lost. Trace my veins like a leaf,
Anagolay. Follow my stem’s twist to
groundwater, touch my roots, milky
in darkness. Take me back to the earth.
Gita Ralleigh completed an MA in creative writing at Birkbeck University of London in 2015. She has published short stories in the Bellevue Literary Review, Wasafiri and in anthologies by Fox Spirit and Freight books. More recently her poetry has been published by The Emma Press, The Brown Orient, and 26 Writers.