Where’s Forward? by Tucker Lieberman

Image source: Simon & Schuster


After the heroine of Charlotte Brontë’s novel Villette

Lantern-lit names bobbing on the black river:
The Ocean, The Phoenix, The Consort, The Dolphin.
Here is the Vivid, the boat you have wanted,
And onward you go to the port of Boue-Marine.

Plans cost you shillings; heedlessness, crowns.
You wander because no clear goal has been set.
You know that your jeune fille ideal isn’t real.
Your inner voice tells you: “Go to Villette!”

How hard will you work for just half of the pay?
Steep is the cost of not knowing your way.
Will you be a washergirl, governess, spy?
Where’s forward, where’s back? En avant? C’est vrai?


Tucker Lieberman created the blank journal Flip the Finger at Despair. His poems are published widely, including in Dream Noir, Esthetic Apostleand Gingerbread HouseLike many adventurers who leave their homelands at the beginnings of many novels, he traveled from his birthplace in North America to a new home in South America. www.tuckerlieberman.com Twitter: @tuckerlieberman

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