Persephone, queen of the underworld. It’s a title that sounds great on the surface, but then you peel back the layers of the story to find she was abducted by Hades, that she left behind a grieving mother determined to retrieve her by whatever means she could.
Later in the story it’s found that she is bound to Hades, either through his trickery or her own intent, and thus, she can’t ever fully escape.
I’ve always considered this story to be one of symbiosis: how Persephone and her mother Demeter are separated for half the year, how the seasons were created in Demeter’s grief. How Hades demanded Persephone to be in the Underworld, permitting her to leave if she had abided by a rule she didn’t know existed.
With poetry, I want to see beyond harvesting and autumn. Show me symbiotic relationships: show me gut-wrenching grief that shapes the world around a character; show me the closeness of two people familial or otherwise. Show me trickery, a strong character who makes their own decisions, plays by their own rules.