MEDUSA REVISITED (A Poem)
Here's a 30 year-old poem of mine about Medusa, the Goddess -- yes, she was an earth goddess in older versions of her myth -- with snakes for hair whom the very sight of turns men to stone. I have had a fondness for Medusa from early childhood, in spite of her horrific aspect. Then one day I met the most incredible tree, branches writhing in the wind like snakes, and voila, I wrote the below poem in Medusa's voice, talking Perseus out of his intention to kill her.
Oh, you gave me such a start!
But do not be too sure of yourself, young man,
had my sisters' eye been more watchful
you would have died before you ever neared my bedchamber.
But be that as it may,
please pardon this uproar about my head.
Waking to your murderous intent is more horrifying to me
than anything you see reflected in your shield.
Now be honest, even as they hiss and dance,
do not my serpents hint at a treasure worth your knowing?
It is true many have writhed in rage, spewing venom,
through long hair-raising histories.
But there are a thousand dazzling more!
Like these shedding ancient skins
for newer patterns just below.
And these hibernating,
inspiring webs of myth and prophecy.
Or these delving into sunlight and shadow,
challenging dry places with sinuous strength.
Or these creating scintillating scales
with little more than air and bone.
Or this infant over my left ear
inquiring after its own tail.
Then there are those times, awesome even to me,
as now, when all are finally still,
hushed like an ancient sargasso sea
cradling brilliant sunrise on its breast.
Come, sit beside me.
What news is there abroad?
You can leave your sword and shield by the door,
you will not need them.
Though there is much to fear and revere in me,
only your refusal to accept this diversity I offer
can turn you to stone.
I used to really like reading this poem at readings, but was vaguely puzzled when if it got much response at all it was to find it amusing. Of course, I did intend for the opening to be worth a chuckle but not the piece as a whole. It was a rare and happy moment for me when someone got my point. Ah, well, I share it now here for what it may have to offer and still deeply believe that only denial can truly petrify us.
Resource: Mytholog, "Literature of Mythic Proportions."
‘til next time, keep dreaming,
[aka: Patricia Kelly]
****If you wish to copy or use any of my writing or poems, please email me for permission (under “View my complete profile")****My other blog: ROSWILA’S TAROT GALLERY & JOURNAL.