Upon the Shoes of Swiftness, I jaunt down Inachus,
perhaps in reverie, as Arachne weaves a stunted tapestry
upon the wall and floor—gloomy, bitter, tragic spun—
and I am Pallas Athene, a woman of infinite promise.
Beleaguered by creation, I suffer the strain of consciousness,
I haven’t the choice, like that woman turned spider
thoughts of self-imposed death swirled gracelessly
beneath still waters, a facade; I captured her.
Near Joppa, guarded by a monster of the Earthshaker’s lending,
I left her chained without hope—for Perseus is long dead,
abandoned to oblivion by the fickle beliefs of men—
that wounded, angry child I can never again be;
I am distanced by the gashes shorn into my flesh,
riving that ever-fixed the consort, the son by Orhpic hymn,
the personification of delight, a glance into my womb.
I sought to reason with her once, the guilt overwhelming.
The Tamer of Horses soothed his beast, beckoning it to his side,
and I scaled embellished links into bygone years, where
her rages flew like lightning hurled by the Cloudgatherer
toward Titans both real and imagined, “The progenitor!
He suffocates,” her most prevalent cry,
and at my approach, she turned to me in coy petulance—
“One day you will join me here;
another comes to take your place.”
I trembled then recalled a defiant nature—
though swallowed whole by misery, out of fear perhaps,
like the Oceanid who was Wisdom before me, I find myself fully armed,
incapable of being a nymph who owes the world nothing more
than the grace of her beauty. I am weighted down
by that which seems my constant and faithful companion.
She has never failed nor abandoned me.
The woe love brings.
Misery, you cherish me. So well kept
in your heavy shadow, I became a desolate creature,
a floundering wasteland of precious dreams,
where fools and children dwell. Wretched and frivolous,
I was abundantly shallow and invoked you—incited
your presence to find that which I ofttimes required
to accept the silent shambles, the dark abyss, life.
O misery, sweet misery, for the apathy which lies
in the harvest of your content, I devote myself so cruelly,
but you will relinquish claim when the Indigent State
is overrun by The Great Feats, and a new self is born.
“Yes,” the acknowledgment, “I, too, shall be bound
in chains whose links are formed by triumph over vicissitude.
Yes,” in relief I smiled and, to my former self, conveyed,
“I eagerly await that exchange.”