A Prayer to St Dymphna | Danielle Perry

a golden charm of st dymphna
her name at the top
and at the bottom:
pray for us

she was just a girl
when her mother died
and her father – so lost
in his grief – decided
he would marry her instead

when she heard this was to happen
she ran, she ran, she ran
and he chased her

when he found her
he swung his sword
and took her head clean off

i found the charm (where?
i remember so much
but not this)
and looked up the story

i read it, and serendipity
engulfed my body,
no longer the little girl
one that (why?) drew him

st dymphna, patron saint
of the mentally ill,
whose father tried to marry her,
pray for us

————
Danielle Perry once answered the question “what was your favorite toy in childhood” with the answer “books.” She graduated with a degree in English Lit and Religious Studies from Guilford College in Greensboro, NC. She now lives in Portland, OR, but will always be an East Coaster at heart. Her work has been published in The Toast, FLAPPERHOUSE, and Potluck Magazine, among others. Her chapbook Phases (2015) was published by Sad Spell Press.

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