Heart Is a Ball of Thread Unspooling//Georgia Bellas





You must have hated

with the fury of a teenage girl —

Was it your father, your mother,

your half-brother-bull, or

the small town boys you

despised most?

Skinny, pimpled lads

who slid their hands up

your dress,

C’mon, give us a ride,

or are you a bull-lover like

your mother?

Did you tend to the labyrinth

fiercely, plotting escape from

that cursed island

where everyone knew your history,

where your fate was already sealed

in the maze’s walls?

Did you feed your anger

to starve the despair

that whispered from your gut:

You’re no different from him.

You share his blood.

You share his prison.

Your heart must have been intact,

never broken,

for you to give it so freely

to a stranger.

Or was it so damaged?

so swollen with rage?

for you to kill your kin,

the shame of your family, yes, but

even your father just hid the poor boy.

Were you so naïve you thought

Theseus’ love true?

Boys only want one thing

but he —

he was different.

He wanted freedom and you,

you wanted him.

You gave him your ball of thread

thinking it would tie him

to you forever.
But not all prisons are labyrinths

you learned. We can be miserable,

trapped, on any island of our choosing.







Georgia Bellas is the fiction editor at Atticus Review. Her work appears in [PANK], The Collapsar, WhiskeyPaper, Cartridge Lit, and Sundog Lit, among other journals. You can follow her teddy bear, host of the Internet radio show “Mr. Bear’s Violet Hour Saloon,” on Twitter at @MrBearStumpy, and listen to podcasts at secretlives.podbean.com.