Gods and Goddesses of the Greek Mythos Continued – Hermes the Babe

Gods and Goddesses of the Greek Mythos Continued – Hermes the Babe

Here is another of my characterisations of Gods and Goddesses; they are actually coming about as I am researching on the Ancient Greek Mythos for a forthcoming download project with amazing artist Tony Lawrence. As I research to gather information on what they look like to help the artist in his depictions if I come across ones with a bit of inspirational story I blog them.

IE Athene, in this case though although it is an interesting storyline the God (if he is a God) Hermes is at best an anti-hero with the historic crimes division after him probably. There are those who leapt from Olympus rather than him turn them to ever staring stone.

Hermes – Cairn-man – Pillar of Stone – Toddler

This man is not a god he is a pillar.image An offspring of gods yet was born as an embodiment of an orgiastic pillar. Dance near him if you dare. Hermes is Priapus the totemistic virtue of a phallic pillar or cairn no less.

His mother was Maia and if there was such a thing as fatherhood back then we would be saying his father was Zeus. Maia met Zeus because she was the daughter of Apollo then afterwards being with child she had a score to settle with her father for mistreatments.[!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!]  Gods being gods they grow fast, and Hermes grew fast, very fast, especially in intellect. By seven months he had mastered the bow and invented many things, then Themis gave him nectar and ambrosia of the gods or should that be Nectar of the Gods and Ambrosia of the Gods; and he was ready to   adventure. image.jpgReady for that vengeance from beyond the womb.

He was followed by a gathering band of nymphs they made a wicked wilful travelling party. wild band.jpgHe was befriended by Cyllene. They played and sang and laughed. Cyllene showed off her enchanting musical ability and Hermes claimed he could make something far more mystical than that. Cyllene bid him to show it was true, Hermes said he would need some cattle hide to make the strings. Then when Cyllene told him of Apollo’s herd he knew he could get his revenge and build his instrument, he knew so much more too. Well well before we discover how great he is, he knew.

Yes this merry band agreed that little Hermes and they could smuggle the herd, but Apollo would simply follow and they would be found.

Hermes bid them cut large patches of bark from the Fallen Oak and to cut long grass to bind into cord. From these he showed them how to fashion shoes for the cattle and away they were led along a trackless path.

The cattle were gone.

Apollo was livid.

Apollo he searched but there were no tracks.

Then, by chance in his raging stampede around the land he found the Satyrs, led by the rogue Silenus they were greedy for reward, great reward, for Apollo was angry, very great reward.

Eventually, in Arcadia, the Satyr gang heard something unusual, unique in fact; strange music like no melody ever heard before yet dulled and distant. It seemed to be coming from far away and yet from everywhere. It seemed to be coming from below the earth and yet, – no it was, it was down below, it was. Eager as they were they could not help but dance. Dance, as they hunched and sniffed and searched

Tnymph.jpghen suddenly they noticed a little way ahead by a gateway in a leafy copse the sultry, haughty, Cyllene idly taking the air. The music led them towards her.

It was louder behind her and there at the back of the glade was a cave; the music was coming from there. “What is that music of the nymphs we have never heard before?”cave.jpg

Cyllene swung gently round towards them, “No nymph plays that marvellous tune upon that unique instrument.”

“No one can play better than the nymphs, no one has a better instrument than they.” The satyrs gaggled together in panic behind him, staring in quizzical fear.

“Hermes does.”

“Who is Hermes?”

“Hermes is a babe.”chain babe.jpg

The Satyrs stood mesmerised as Cyllene gracefully articulated the story of the babe who was born within this cave. He who had adventured across the lands at so young an age, who had acted with great skill and created a marvellous lyre like nothing ever heard before. Silenus enquired what this lyre was like and Cyllene told him how it was shaped like a tortoise because he had fashioned it out of a tortoise and cow hide twine. “So where did he get this twine?” “Are you calling him a thief!” Just as a fierce argument sprung up a few things happened at once.crane.jpg A great long-winged bird landed in the glade; this was the Sacred Crane sacred to Hermes and because of Hermes. Silenus glanced his eyes around the glade and there were two cow hides stretched between branches to dry.hides.jpg The grandfather of the babe of course had known that the crane was sacred, sacred to Hermes, and had followed it; Apollo suddenly appeared.

Silenus pointed at the hides, thus establishing himself a right to the reward, then to seal the deal he pointed at the cave.

Apollo strode in and down with a procession following. There lay Maia sleeping deeply a bundle in her arms. “Bring me that quickly grown man Hermes now,” shouted the mighty Apollo, “For he has stolen my cattle and shall be made to bring them back to me, at least all that live.”

Maia threw back the covers and revealed a babe still in its swaddling bands and wrapped in a large leather hide. “How could it be that a babe such as this has done this thing you say?”image.jpg

“I recognise the hide!” boomed Apollo and he snatch up the child and fled the cave.

“Father of Heaven,” (and father of the babe unfortunately), cried Apollo as he bent to his knee in front of Zeus, “I accuse this babe”, (the bundle unrolled from his arms as did the other two hides from the glade), “of theft of all my herd.”z 01.jpg

“Zeus looked down to Hermes, “I cannot believe that you did such a thing and I ask you to plead not guilty.”

“Well I did,” confessed Hermes standing proudly for all his small size, “and I am sorry. I shall return all that live and tell you of the flesh of the others”

Apollo stood looking dazed, enraged and confused.

I divided the flesh of each dead beast in to twelve pieces each as sacrifices to the twelve gods.”

“Twelve?” questioned Apollo, “Who it the twelfth?”

Bowing with a smirk the tiny Hermes said, “Why it is I”.chain babe

How Zeus laughed.z 02

Hermes continued, “A twelfth of the flesh of each of the beasts I ate for I was ferocious hungry the rest I burned. Thus I have invented the first ever flesh- sacrifice. Now I shall give you recompense, follow me.”

He led Apollo in a flash back to the cave and he retrieved a bundle from beneath a sheepskin. “What have you there?” asked Apollo.

Hermes held up the tortoise-shell lyre in display and in the other hand held a plectrum, “This I also invented.”

The music was mesmerising, the singing was praise worthy; it was full of praise also. Praise of Apollo, his nobility, his dignity his grace, his intelligence and, of course, his generosity. It worked, Apollo forgave him and nevertheless little Hermes led him to Pylus, playing all the way, to the cave he had hidden the cattle.image.jpg He released them to graze and offered the Lyre to Apollo, he took it and thankful he said as I keep this so you keep the cattle. Hermes held up his tiny tiny hand and Apollo solemnly shook.

From the distance they heard the mountain top laughter of Zeus as he watched all Hermes’ antics.

As the cattle grazed Hermes gathered long grasses and wove them into a pipe. He played and he declared, “This is the shepherd pipe that leads any sheep to you.”

“If you will let me have this pipe I will trade you my golden cattle-herding staff; it also has the power to send the spirits of the dead peacefully to heaven.”

“I accept, in part, for the reedpipe is worth far more than the golden staff and I will accept the deal if you also promise to teach me the power of augury.”

The distant laugh of the onlooking Zeus could be heard again from afar.z 03.jpg

“I cannot but my three nurses the Thriae can. They will teach you on the isle of Parnassus to read the flowing pebbles in the swirling bowl.”pebbles.jpg

“This is indeed a very ingenious, eloquent and persuasive Godling.” Chortled Zeus.

Upon their return Zeus bellowed at tiny Hermes, “You must promise forever from now respect the rights of another’s property and never tell utter lies.”

“Then make me your herald great father, and I will never tell lies, although I shall not promise to always tell the whole of the truth in every detail. Furthermore I shall protect and preserve all divine property in your honour.”ribbon stick.jpg

(Apollo was chortling now.)

“You shall be my herald then, and you shall in that duty guide the dead to the underworld, oversee all matters of business, all treaties and all rights of way.styx

Even furthermore you shall teach us the twirling of sticks to make fire you shall assist the Three Fates (this he did and invented the knuckle bones, the alphabet, astronomy, boxing, the musical scale, gymnastics and weights and measures. He also learned the tree alphabet.)

Thus it was Zeus who chuckled quietly now for he had honoured and empowered him in such a way that he would forever be too busy.

So it was that the now growing Hermes was presented with the adornments of Herald and proudly stood in the round hat of rain protection, the fast flying golden sandals and the beribboned herald’s staff which commanded respect from all when Hermes was engaged in matters of administration, (of which there were many).admin babe.jpg

Recent blogs include from the Greek Myths, Athene , The Fates and Pan.

Behold the God-slayer Typhon – Doom of Zeus – Graphic Novel First Draft

Ales and Tales around York pubs.

and more as the Skald to the Chieftain inspired by Georg and Gudvangen.

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The Door – Skaldic Blog No 14

doorThe Door

Who shall step inside to reside

For many will follow

Visitors all

Yet who is the one

To step through this door

Fierce fighter – Rights protector

Humour-bringer – Party-flinger

One young and one old together

Historian – Asatruan – Christian

Stargazer – Future-dreamer

Wish-bringer – Tomorrow–shaper

Who shall step through now

To allow and condone

Assessed, be enthroned

There is one  man

Who is all things to all of them

It is he,

who shall step through

Strong hunter; a future

See they build a wild door

A chieftain’s portal to another place

The place of visions dreamed

His gathered place for all of you

To be yourself,

Beyond the door

 

 

Adrian Spendlow

Recent blogs include from the Greek Myths, Athene and Pan.

Ales and Tales around York pubs.

and more as the Skald to the Chieftain inspired by Georg and Gudvangen.

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Great Goat God Pan: The Greek Myth Lives On

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Great Goat God Pan: The Greek Myth Lives On

In the magical land of Faerie where all is possible and nothing is as expected, in ancient times when this land was Arcadia among the nymphs and fair things danced a monstrous being, half man half goat. two fairiesThey laughed at him, but listen not to his music or you will dance. You will dance and dance and dance and suddenly succumb to passion.

The wildest passion possible. pan highOh yes. And it will never end – but when it does – you will fall in mad exhaustion. Nothing will ever be the same and no sensual experience will ever be as good or even half as good. Not a tiny touch as good.

Silenus the comedic father of the satyrs was autochthon or father of Pan. Yet others say he was fathered by Hermes. Hermes says this for he was there. Many were there that night and many might think the same. Hermes states it though, and he believes.

Pan was born. He was born while Hermes was still there. Pan was so ugly at birth it is said that his mother ran away from him. Born with horns, beard, tail and goat-legs. Magical birds and dryads and all are not accustomed to such fierceness among their midsts. Hermes thought it a laugh to take him to Olympus to show as a novelty. Following his freak show upbringing he went on to lead quite a life, quite a wild life.pan pic 001

Lived in rural Arcadia, though he could have dwelled upon Olympus. He taught Daphnis pipes given by his foster parents who were shepherds.pan pipe He was humble, easy going yet wild and some say lazy. He certainly liked his afternoon naps; after his revels with the mountain nymphs.

From Arcadia he guards all herds, flocks, and beehives when called upon. Perhaps we need to call upon his spirit now to save the earth, for he well knows that more than half of our foods and drinks are only here because of bees; because of Pan.

If you are seeking something in life then perhaps he is there for you for he helps all hunters who ask for help in finding quarry.bird

Beware you wake him as you pass a grove or grotto where he has chosen to sleep for he will raise with a great shout which will terrify you to the bone.pan shouting 001

The magical Arcadians do not show him respect, for all he blesses hunters, if they fail then that day they will fire their remaining quills at him and how they laugh.

Pan is fron paein:- to pasture, the upright man of the Arcadian fertility cult leading to the North Western Witch-cult and later as the devil – so it is said.

His terrible shout brought us the word and the state of ‘panic’.

pan shout 003He has many lop-eared hounds around him and he loves to eat lynx. He named a daughter after this cat. He would catch them and devour them. Always sharing though, throwing chucks around to be eaten by his hounds, his bitches and his whelps alike or so it is said. Old goat-legged god from Arcadia.

Pan fathers many children with the nymphs and muses. He tells tales of many other trysts and sessions.moon fairy

He chased the chaste Pitys. They turned into a tree. A fir tree they became. Quite what happened one may never know but to this day The Great God Pan (or at least his spirit) wears a branch from it as a chaplet; a fir-tree crown of celebration, pitiless celebration perhaps.

He also went after Syninx seeking to besmirch her purity; he chased her from Mount Lycaeum to the River Ladon. She turned into a reed.reeds He saw this happen as he approach but when he closed he could not tell one reed from another reed. He took them all, well, a great cluster. He could not tell which one or if he had her, but he took enough to weave himself a new pipe with. So now when he plays that pipe he thinks he plays her.

He did well when he chased Selene, after dressing himself up in well washed wool. He had chosen well, a moonlit May Eve where she thought herself the young Queen of the May and saw him as her lover leading to the marriage of the greenwood.moon.jpg She enjoyed riding on his back so much that she said he could do anything he wished to her.

Pan was simplistic and loved riot and the Olympians hated him for it. They exploited him. Apollo wheedled round him till he taught him prophesy then as soon as he had what he wanted (he wanted more) he took the Delphic Oracle from him and the Pythonesque Preistess. Oh how Pan should have seen this before it happened and now he saw less than before.pan pic 002 As he wandered, perhaps lost in thoughts of how he had been tricked, he dropped his pipe. Hermes watched and sniggering took it. Oh how it played and how the Olympians loved it. “I invented it myself,” said Hermes. Apollo admired that playing most of all so perhaps he was tricked back. He didn’t see that coming.

Pan is dead. The Great Goat God Pan is dead. That is what is said. They say he is dead. The only ever god to be dead.oak horn 001.jpg So it often was said. Said by a sailor; Thamus who heard a voice – he said it was divine. It told him, “Thamus sail on to Palodes as you planned, sail fast, and tell them there that the Great God Pan is dead”.  Oh how they groaned and lamented all along the shore.

Oh how the Maenads go mad. They did in times back then and it is my guess they still dance again. Laurel-chewing web-faced orgiastic worshippers of mare-headed Daphoene.

Each year they rip apart the sacred king then they bathe to wash away the blood.maenad solo

He, Pan, was invited to their dances. He dances still I hear.

As they dance in ecstatic trance amid the laurel babbling you may hear them calling Pan, Pan, bring me Pan.

Yes, dressed in goat-skin, he is their chosen lover during drunken orgies upon the high mountainsmaenads.jpg

Some say it was Hermes fathered Pan but Silenus says otherwise as he laughs. Amid the Maenads dance there is a shaft, a stone shaft, erectile in its standing proud for all around. Perhaps Pan’s mother the woodpecker taps there still. kingffisher 01For her tapping upon the trees in a lulling song of beats portends the summer rain.

This rain will cool even the passion-mad Maenads as they dance an intoxicant dance of writhing limbs. For his mother as woodpecker Penelope (with a web over her face) had danced here in her passions and in her labours and the penelope was once a bird with webbing over. So when you see a woman with a webbing inked into her leg she is a dancing lover of Pan; a Maenad.

Great Pan dances when you are reborn so look for him when you have fresh new thoughts and dreams for you may have become anew within his dance.

Personally I do not think he is dead. Yet even if he is, I believe the spirit lives on, so Pan is with us still; play on Pan play on.

See also Athene Greek Goddess

Hermes the Babe

The Great Goat-God Pan

The Three Fates

Behold the God-slayer Typhon – Doom of Zeus – Graphic Novel First Draft

And listen

This piece was originally part of my research for a forthcoming graphic novel with artist Tony Lawrence, but for now I felt Pan deserved a blog of his own. Current artwork for this blog is from myself. This is my interpretation from studying Graves’ Greek Myths and a few bits from the Iliad. Look out for the forthcoming Graphic Novel with Tony: Behold the God-slayer Typhon the Doom of Zeus.

Athene Greek Goddess

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Athene Queen of Heaven

An ancient timeless disc predicted her existence long before her time. This disc she carried in her magical Aegis bag to bring her power and to reach for whenever she needed a shield. It shone bright silver and had a spiralling pattern of pictographs foretelling of her destiny.spiral lomo

She was Neith in Libya and Anatha in Palestine, she had many existences; the Sumerians knew her long before, as many more would as she journeyed.

The Pelagasions recalled how Goddess Athene was born by lake Tritonis in Libya and that she was nurtured by the Libyan Nymphs.

She came into being before there was even such a thing as fatherhood, whoever sired her it is sure that many adopted her as theirs.

Tritone was queen, the elder of the triad of river nymphs and she was the mother of Athene and of the nymph she became.

Apollodorus claimed that Athene was born to Zeus and merely raised by the river god Triton yet we now know that she was born from Zeus much later in her life when she burst roaring from his skull.

The first ever man it is said was Alalcomeneus. Tritone called upon him and he tutored young Athene as she would tutor humans forever afterwards.

She knew suffering from a young age and ever carried it in her heart. As would be the way of her priestesses in time to come she must succeed in pitched combat. She faired far better than intended; her closest companion died, Pallas, she loved her so.

Some say that Zeus was overseeing from afar, we do know he interfered in the mortality of very many, whole races indeed, so the death of one is well within his range of depravity.

So it was that Pallas was distracted, a spear blow she was well able of deflecting, their practice changed in that instant and the spear went home deep.

Athene suffered such grief. Pallas was so so dear to her and of far more value in life than her own life. She took her name. She took her name before her own; Pallas Athene.

She already had many names within her from her timeless existence and many more names and titles would be hers. She always carried the grief though.

Pallas means youth or maiden. Many such would stand in combat at great risk to their selves. Honour drove many a young woman to their deaths, seeking the right to become Priestess over all Priestesses.

Such was the way for virgin prophetesses who followed their love of the Queen of Heaven.athene ana 03 bw

Some say she had a youthly father; a leader of tribes and lands who also took the name of Pallas. Pallas Triton. Yes this was in the times before there was even such a concept as fatherhood. Women were to the fore and credited with all nurtured futures and all past destiny.

Pallas was a monster. He was a winged goatish giant and he outraged her. Athene flayed his skin from him to add to her magical Aegis of forever chastity.

His daughter the virgin and would be Priestess stepped forward. She challenged Athene to combat. Here it was seen that Zeus interfered with destiny. There was a roaring of dragons. A myriad of dragons roared as Athene struck, the blow was not defended and another virgin fell at her feet.

She travelled the river Triton through many lands. Many virgins would fall.

Athene came to Iton where the Willow-Man Itonus adopted her and claimed her as his own. Thus she became the Willow-Goddess.

Let all willow be sacred and let Athene bring the rain as needed when called upon.

Here she was welcomed and treated fair.

Iodame the daughter of Itonus was curious of Athene, and thinking the night was the safe time, she crept into her precinct. Her father had founded a sanctuary for Athene and Iodame had become priestess there. She wanted to know more. She trespassed unknowing of Athene’s role as the moon goddess; in the light of the moon as she crept, the first thing she saw was Athene’s aegis, her magical bag. The face of a monster looked upon her and the horror of it changed her.  Iodame the immortal Priestess is cast in stone.aegis lomo

On she travelled, towards her destiny. For Athene was to become Goat-Athene. As Laphria, as she became known, she married a Goat-King, the ceremony was on May Eve and as her priestesses have done so since so there is such a ceremony on that night still now in many lands. Still now.

Laphria (she who wins booty) was a goat goddess of the moon and soon to be of heaven.

As the Libyan girls wore a goat-skin apron so she can be seen in goat-skin; often a dress length waistcoat which trails the floor behind her. A chastity belt of goat-skin can be slid across the belt to the front of the dress as a symbol of purity and renewal.

Herodotus says, in Libya this was fringed with thongs not serpents, but they cannot fully emulate their goddess.

Ethiopian girls still wear these at times yet they attach cowries a Yonic symbol of the vulva.

At Sais they built her temples, still she travelled.

Athene became patroness of a pre-Hellenic medical cult of the moon. Her priestesses of the cult would gather at the oracular shrines of dead heroes and reincarnated them as serpents or crows.

So another title came to her, Caronis (the crow) who in time would become mother of Asclerius by Apollo.raven lomo

She gained the title Coronis because of the oracular crow or raven and the title Hygieia because of her cures. Her following was building; her power was building.

Her all-heal was the mistletoe ixias, which is born by the ancient oak.

Each year at the cutting of the mistletoe the Oak King would be brought out from within the bark for sacrifice. At times a child would step forward as a surrogate and offer to die in his stead. The child being the Oak King for that moment, other years the king from within the oak would die for another to grow.

The method of death was the ‘oak sperm’; the juice of the mistletoe.

Athene took the power of this sperm and created healing powers.

She took to a great couch in Tegea in great splendour and her past heritage was seen to be true; she was Nieth, she was Anatha and she was the orgiastic moon goddess.

The Moon King chooses from her virgin priestesses each year. His passionate wedding marriage to her in its sacredness ensures the harvest.

And so, through Crete and onwards, she came to the city of Athenae. Her renown had come before her and she was welcomed as their goddess into the city which was hers even before she stepped through its gates.athene ana 01 edit

Her travels from land to land and through flowing fluids had been observed, she was overseen by the deep one. Poseidon had seen her from his watery depths and he coveted her. He coveted her lands even more. In furious rage he spouted forth from his seas and stabbed downwards, deep into the land with his trident. Deep into the heart of the city.

The fresh waters of the River-Nymph who was Goddess of so many burst forth. Yes much of the city was destroyed but its energising waters mingled with the salts and pushed them back. The pool of Athenae can still be seen. From her Aegis she plucked out a gift of the land. The olive tree. The sacred olive tree which is her personification flourished and bloomed and protected the land. The city fell though. Poseidon in his rage saw that he had failed to take the city for his own so he brought forth a tsunami and deluged the bay.

Athene formed Athens above the flood, and it was hers then and it is hers now.

She shared her temples in Athens with Hephaestus (he who shines by day) as she was the moon goddess.

Her chief Athens priestess was of the lion clan.

Processions would be led around the city where all carried paralunes; white parasols of the moon.

Here she grew into her own. The patroness of smith-craft and all the technical arts.

All tools, weapons and utensils of her age are magical, they still are, and the Smith is a sorcerer.

If Athene is ever dethroned her smith becomes a god.

Smiths are so valuable that they could be hobbled, but to symbolise this many are shackled at the ankle during May celebrations.

She had many powers. Mainly that she was awesome. Her trees had sacred power. Her shield and Aegis were magical. She could curse. Turned Medusa. She was of the Harpies. Was the Graeae. She was many-fold and everywhere. She grew Spartis (or sown men) from serpent teeth. Turned nymphs to ants. Cast distortive glamours. She never loses. She is Athene.

Yes she was the Harpies, the Storm Winds, the Triple Goddess, the Sudden Destroyer.

She was the Graeae, all three of the grey ones were her; Engo (warlike), Pemphredo (Wasp) and Deino (terrible).

She was many-form.

Known as Gorgopis (grim-faced) also.

Zeus would have her as his, the claim of descendancy, offspring of his will. He desired her power; his power over her.

His claim would cause him pain, for an oracle came to him with dire news. Child of his loin would rise up to destroy him. This wise old woman who foretold such to him was sent by the one with a claim of great power. For she was ruler of all; The Earth Mother Goddess, and here spoke her avatar.

Zeus was filled with dread. He was filled with determination.

His dread plan to survive would cause him much suffering: to swallow whole all who came from him.

The power of Athene was strong; a great battle within. His head was in agony, his brain wailed, he was filled with the ancient cry of Libyan nymphs, “Olulu Ololu” – “Olulu Ololu”.

All help was sought. The rescuer who came, in truth was there to rescue Athene, for it is said that he loved her: Prometheus he came.

Bidding Zeus lay still, he placed his foot upon him and then with wedge and beetle he came to bare upon the very skull of the god.

Beating hard with the beetle maul upon the wedge the dome of the bone it split asunder.

A great goddess burst forth, in full armour, roaring for victory, “Olulu Ololu”. Athene returned to the world.athene ana 04

Some say however that she had changed. Zeus’ thoughts had engulphed her. Powerful as ever, yet she spoke for Zeus now. From now it would be priests who followed her. She cursed her familiar the crow as an oath to Zeus.

The ways of all women changed this day; some say forever.

Prometheus had saved his tutor, the woman he worshipped.

The people of Athens they spoke out in denial, that Prometheus was not the lover of their queen. Many say that this meant it must be so. For a deep connection linked their hearts and their destiny; her aid would empower him further but it would also bring his eternal suffering.

Because of her Prometheus was the creator of mankind. The half Titan half Nymph asked of her for her blessing and he shaped the river clay into people; Athene breathed life. Humanity was born anew.

Athene saw his greatness and his wisdom and she taught him architecture, astronomy, mathematics, navigation, medicine, metallurgy, and many other arts. He passed these on to mankind.

She would teach the science of numbers and all the domestic arts such cooking, weaving spinning, but first humanity would need fire.fire lomo

Prometheus had fought alongside Zeus against Cronus but his support would only lead him so far. The power of fire was denied. His lover led him the way and Prometheus reach for the very heights to capture fire from the sky. How Zeus was enraged to see burning hearths appearing across the lands. As Prometheus taught so Zeus fumed. Zeus looks down and destroys, this is what he does. Humanity have been his target over and over again and still are. This day he roused to vengeance against a Titan of the Nymphs; Prometheus himself. The living death of the ripping birds is Prometheus’ screaming existence from then on.

Athene carried hurt and rage and this would be turned against others who went against her. The Gorgons; for they were beautiful. Their beauty was renowned. Stheino, Euryale and Medusa were admired and wished for by many. Word spread below the seas and now Poseidon heard of this beauty, of the wonderful Medusa in particular. He wooed her and would have her. They crept in the night into Athene’s temple and made love. The temple of the Moon-Goddess invaded in the night was an outrage that would be seen by her who is most powerful by night. Athene caught them and in her rage cursed Medusa into a winged beast with glaring eyes, protruding tongue, huge teeth, brazen claws and serpent locks. One look at her would turn any onlooker to stone so horrible now was she.

For all that Medusa ran and hid, her existence was a challenge heroes could not deny. One would succeed; Perseus. Athene created an image of Medusa so he would know her when he found her. Then when thus prepared she advised him of her hiding place and of how to approach, she even used her powers to guide his hand.

Athene gave two bottles of blood from Medusa to Asclepius the healer, left to raise the dead, right to instantly destroy.  She fastened two drops to the serpent body of Erichthonius.

The head of the Gorgon was in place upon her ancient Aegis bag.

Adorned with hundreds of tassles of Cyclopean forged snaking-gold the writhing head would empower her forever as its ancientness was empowered even further. The prophesy was fulfilled just as the spiralling pictographs had timelessly spoken.

It was a magic bag.

Athene was magical. Pegasus born of the blood would be tamed by her. She created a golden bridle powerful enough to bring the Moon-horse under her control.

Athene the Goddess of war, a better fighter even than Ares, for she had beaten him twice. She was the Goddess of war and yet she took no pleasure in battle, for she preferred the settling of disputes; she wish always to uphold just law and always by pacific means whenever she could.

She bears no arms in times of peace, although her shining shield is always with her within the power for the Aegis bag.spiral lomo She most often turns to Zeus to be armed when the need comes. The spear is her choice.

She is the one to come to for strategy; wise captains will approach her before they go to war. Tactics and strategy from her win wars for many of the wise. For in battle Athene never loses.

Yet Athene is the champion of justice. There is great and powerful mercy within her heart. When courts are held if ever there is a split vote then Athene will hold the power for the casting vote – a casting vote which always votes for freedom. For where there is doubt of guilt there must be liberty.

When Zagreus was ripped asunder she rescued his heart and encased it in moulded gypsum; she breathed life and so he became a god.

The rage at times still burned and when Teiresias wandered too close to where she bathed and was suddenly transfixed by her naked beauty she blinded him. He stumbled away and eventually his mother found him and when she heard his tale she went to Athene and bagged forgiveness. Nothing could be undone but recompense could be made; Athene drew the ancient serpent from within her Aegis and bid it cleanse his ears. Thus, he was reborn and became the greatest seer. The very birds could be heard and understood; the prophetic birds.

She forgave the Goddess of lovers Aphrodite when she apologised. Athene had entered her rooms and caught Aphrodite weaving at a loom. Athene could create beauty and weave destiny but Aphrodite was for love and for nothing else. She must spend her time in love making and Athene told her so. Aphrodite promised that she would never work again in any way and Athene refrained from cursing.

Athene made a double flute from stag bones. The music was wonderful but some giggled when she played so she went to a pool and looked in as she played. Her cheeks puffed up and her face turned blue. She looked so silly that she cursed it and threw it away.pipe

Athene invented the flute, trumpet, the earthenware pot, the plough, the rake, the ox yoke, the horse bridle, the chariot, and the ship.

When Athene invented the plough Myrmex the nymph claimed she had thought of it, so Athene turned her into an ant as punishment.

Cadmus travelled far erecting brazen cauldrons for Athene of Lindus as he went. He bought a cow with two white full moons and followed it till it could walk no more. Here he founded the city of Thebes and erected a stature of Athene using her Phoenician name of Onga.

Athene cut a beam from Zeus’ oak and it gave oracular guidance to the ship Argo.

She assisted Zeus in the summoning of Heracles when the terrible snake-feet giants attacked. She empowered Heracles with knowledge and tactics.

When the great Typhon attacks (in a later story) she sailed to empower Zeus to resist this beast. She perhaps sailed there to Zeus in the very first ship.

Athene changes into a sea eagle, a swallow, a vulture, a dove, lark, the diver bird Gannet, but the wise owl is her principal epiphany. On moonlit nights you may hear her manifestation and shall look for a silhouette among the trees.

Athene Queen of Heaven, Neith in Libya, Anatha of Palestine, River-Nymph, Pallas Athene, Willow-Goddess, Rain-maker, Goat-Athene, Laphria, Caronis, Hygieia, She Who Shines By Night, Patroness of Smith-craft, The Harpies, The Storm Winds, Triple Goddess, Sudden Destroyer, The Graeae, Three Grey Ones, Engo, Pemphredo, Wasp, Deino, Gorgopis, Moon-Goddess, Goddess of War, Champion of Justice, Athene of Lindus, Onga, Athene Queen of Heaven.

This piece was originally part of my research for a forthcoming graphic novel with artist Tony Lawrence, but for now I felt Athene deserved a blog of her own. Current artwork for this blog is from myself and Ana Maus. This is my interpretation from studying Graves’ Greek Myths and a few bits from the Iliad. Look out for the forthcoming Graphic Novel with Tony: Behold the God-slayer Typhon the Doom of Zeus.

See also Goat-God Pan, Hermes the Babe and The Three Fates

Behold the God-slayer Typhon – Doom of Zeus – Graphic Novel First Draft

A Poetry Collection by Adrian Spendlow

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A collection of recent poems of a pondering universal kind of nature; a little free-form they are driven by the thought along a path of easy rhythm towards a conclusion you form for yourself later.

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Kill Rights Rescinded

I don’t often make global rulings

Never have before in fact

And this one is none-enforceable

Many of us will break this law

It is in place nonetheless

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This which I say now

To all humans on this planet

Refers to humanities treatment

Of humanity

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With regard to fellow residents

Of this planet

From this day onwards

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You have no right to kill

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 …                          Adrian Spendlow

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Hope-craft

There is one thing

I have learnt from

My life experience

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It may not be much

Of a transferable model;

A benchmark,

A rule of thumb.

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It may not be a masterpiece

As a perfect example

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But this apprentice

Passes it on

In the hope it may have

A use at a universal level:

There is no need to make life difficult for others.

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 …                      Adrian Spendlow

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Soul Property

These little subtle things of hate

Somewhat less often of late

The trick is in anticipation

Playing upon preoccupation

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Returning to times in memory

(Unaware of victor’s glory)

Which hurt beneath the levels of aware

To always inside still be there

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Recollection ever present

Something of self is rent

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Quietly said, privately spoken

Hit and hit again upon the broken

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Words quietly said, privately spoken

Hit and hit again upon the broken

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All time lost to anticipation

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 …                              Adrian Spendlow

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Be Vital

Wishing peace in the calm of yourself

May the eye of the storm

Be yours when you need it

Your energy is yours

Freely keep it

Let interactions foster

Mutually nurture

For you are yours alone

Even though you are loved

Let these words be an embrace

To encapsulate you

We wish you whole

(Or what is there left to love?)

You as you are

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 …                    Adrian Spendlow

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Top of the World

We occasionally feel

On top of the world

But this earth revolves fast

You have to set quite pace

Just to keep still

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 …                    Adrian Spendlow

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War or Peace – Kill or Cooperate

So what shall it be mate?

For everywhere we go

……..hear words of hate

We shall have to kill billions off

Then repopulate

Take war to the street

Killing from street to street

In every street; death

Stamp out the very last breath

Till there is only one kind left

Then, one birth by one birth

Refill the earth

Or, could we make peace?

All try hard to cooperate

See if you can tolerate

Go from hate to release

Or, is it too late?

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 …                          Adrian Spendlow

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