Odin scoured his eye socket

like a dirty basin; hung

as a handkerchief 9 days

from the ash tree gallows—

Runes the same as ruin.


“For Knowledge” retells two Norse myths. Odin, the All-Father, plucked out one of his eyes in exchange for a drink from the well of wisdom and hung himself from Yggdrasil, the ash tree that contained the Norse cosmos, for nine days and nights to understand the mysteries of the runes–their written language. These runes gave him unfathomable power, but they also unlocked the secrets of the future so, after learning them, he had to live with the prophecy of his own death and the twilight of all the other gods.


Kate Angus is a founding editor of Augury Books. Her work has appeared in Indiana Review, Subtropics, Verse Daily, Best New Poets 2010 and 2014 and others. She is the recipient of A Room of Her Own Foundation’s Orlando Prize for Creative Nonfiction.

'From the Greek Anthology', Christopher Bakken

'Main Character’s Diatribe to Writers', John Hart

'from the Greek Anthology', Christopher Bakken