Labyrinth 85 by Oliver de la Paz


The boy in the labyrinth is wrapped deep within the tendrils of myth. The sleeping beast’s face, a reflection of his own. A mirror within a mirror into infinity. When he tilts his head to the side to regard the beast’s horns, the space between the two of them curves. It is as if the two of them are falling together down a long shaft with row after row of doors. Doors that lead to other myths. Doors that open to nothing but air. The boy facing the beasts feels the beast’s grandeur. Its broad chest rises and falls as its breath fills the room with mist. A little fog hovers at the boy’s ankles. It crawls along the stones. Takes the form of the walkways and halls. Its garrulous movements pump and retract with the minotaur’s respiration.



Oliver de la Paz is the author of four books of poetry: Names Above Houses, Furious Lullaby, Requiem for the Orchard, and Post Subject: A Fable. He co-edited A Face to Meet the Faces: An Anthology of Contemporary Persona Poems, and co-chairs Kundiman’s advisory board. He teaches in the MFA program at Western Washington University.