Antinous for Everybody

I worship a dead gay teenager and you can too

Archive for the category “Poetry”

POEM: Melinoe Ariadne

Here is a thread. I will hand it to you.

Do not get lost. Do not lose hold of it.

Here is a thread. You must hang by it.

Follow me through. You will hang from it.

Here is a thread, drawn from my belly.

Here is a trail, left by my blood.

Follow me through. Do not get lost.

There is one way in. There is no way out.

 

I danced in the moonlight. I danced in the dark.

I danced with my brother. I danced with the god.

I danced with my father. I danced for my mother.

I danced for the goddess. I will dance for you.

Watch me dance over the end of the world,

the breaking of the bridges, the falling of the towers.

Hear me laugh when all the lights go out

and poor lost Theseus hears breathing in the dark.

 

I am Melinoe. I am Ariadne.

Daughter of Death. Giver of Life.

Ariadne Melinoe, Melinoe Ariadne,

holy and terrible, stars and bones.

I can tear the world down

and help you rebuild it,

if you heed my commandment:

Build no more walls.

Walls make a labyrinth,

walls hide the monster,

walls divide loved ones.

Let me be your monster,

Melinoe Ariadne, slayer and savior,

goddess and demon of the new age.

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Melinoe: The goddess who will overthrow patriarchy

I am Melinoe, daughter of Persephone,

daughter of the ravished goddess,

borne away without consent but

lawfully wedded, raped by her own father

in the guise of her husband.

I am Melinoe, render of the veil.

The man behind the curtain

has always and only been a man.

I will show you this. His power is a sham.

I am showing you this. I am Melinoe,

child of a rapist and his victim.

I am Melinoe, and the lord of the dead

was my true father, a kind and tender parent

unlike the triumphant lord of the sky.

I am Melinoe, and my sisters are these:

The victims of Harvey Weinstein,

the victims of Bill Cosby,

the daughters raped by their fathers,

their brothers, uncles, boyfriends,

the victims of Roman Polanski,

the victims of Woody Allen.

I am Melinoe, and I have brothers, too:

The boys who were told

that men can’t be raped, the men

who were told they were queer,

they must have wanted it.

I am Melinoe, and to all of you I say:

If Zeus the rapist denies you justice

in your mortal life, in death the rapists

will answer to Hades my father, to Hel

my foster-mother, to Loki my friend,

to Persephone my mother, to Antinous

my husband, and to me, motherfuckers,

you will answer at last to me.

Sacred Nights: Ananke Antinoou

POEM: A day in the life, or, John Lennon, Antinous, and me

I read the news today, oh boy
About a lucky boy who made the grade
He went from nobody to the Imperial Court
Wound up in Hadrian’s bed
Nobody was sure if he belonged in the Imperial Court

One day he went out on the Nile
Just a boy in a boat, boating on the Nile
The reeds waving, the lotus fragrant
The crocodile and the hippo watched him go
But where he went only the long river knows

I read a book today, oh boy;
A Greek boy from the provinces
Had turned the Emperor’s head
And then he wound up dead
Nobody was really sure what was going on
Their affair might have gone on too long

They say he turned into a god

Woke up, fell out of bed
Got underneath the shower head
And listened to the song
That swiftly ran along inside my head

Any day now, you know, you could be dead
That voice inside my head
Walk into traffic and you could be dead
Because you crossed the street
Now wouldn’t that be neat

Ah I read the news today, oh boy
The rich are stealing from the poor again
Somebody wants a war, somebody closed a door
Somebody shot a man who raised his empty hands
But he was black and they were cops
He was a thug and they were not
Maybe he turned into a god

They say he turned into a god

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Sacred Nights: Ophidia

POEM: Rise Up

You can put your heel on the serpent’s head,

But the serpent will rise up.

You can put your chain on the slave’s neck,

But the serpent in the slave will rise up.

You can put your child in a woman’s womb,

But the serpent in her spine will rise up.

You can lay your asphalt on the grass’s roots,

But the serpent in the grass will rise up.

You can go on forever trying to level out the world,

To make your own head the only thing in the world

That stands up, but the serpent at the heart of the world

Will always resist you. The serpent will always rise up.

 

The king will die, the warrior will die,

The rich man will die, the priest will die,

Their wives and their slaves, their children and their cattle,

The tree and its fruit, the green grass springing,

But the serpent will always rise up.

The slave will break his chains, the wife will seek a lover,

The oracle will prophesy, the hurricane will strike,

And out of the roots and vines that break down

Your mighty buildings, the serpent will rise up.

 

Rise up, rise up, serpent of fire!

Rise up, rise up, snake of the deep!

Rise up, rise up, whirling serpent!

Rise up, rise up, rise up in us!

The time to rise up is now!

Sacred Nights: Panthea

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POEM: The Dark Sister

I do not stand in Her shadow: I am Her Shadow.

She is the throne and I am the house.

She is the giver of life and I am the welcomer of the dead

She is the grieving madonna and I am the hysterical whore

She is piteous and I am maudlin

She is white and gold and rose and blue

I am red and black and red and red and red

Behind Isis, Nephthys. Behind Tara, Vajrayogini.

Behind Mary of Nazareth, Mary of Magdala.

I am red and red and red and red and red.

I am black. I am empty. I am ashes.

I am the cast-off mother of the unacknowledged child

Who will never inherit the throne or call the house his own.

He can only come and go, obedient as a hound,

At his brother’s will. She can only throw off her veil

And dance in the broad daylight, beneath a searing sun,

Because no one dares look at her. I am the dark mother

Of the unremembered daughter, Nebt-Het, Melinoe,

Sara la Kali, red and black and bloody and beautiful.

Honor me, or you have not honored all the goddesses.

Honor me, or the Beautiful Boy is without his bride.

Sacred Nights: Osiris and Antinous

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POEM: The Green Man

I am Osiris. I am the Green Man.

I was the first Green Man, Asar, Au Sar, Wesir.

Green like the papyrus growing by the Nile.

Green like the barley growing in the fields.

Green like the leaves that support the sweet lotus.

Sometimes I am black like the soil,

The rich fertile flooded soil of Kemet, eponymous soil.

I am the Green Man of the Black Land.

The first to die becomes the god of the dead.

That is I. First to know death, first to go west,

Killed by my brother, sought by my sisters,

Resurrected by my wife. She fashioned the part

That was missing. I am moonlight and moondark,

Black earth and green plant, a missing phallus

And an upright wand. Come to me, Antinous,

Child of Bithynia, beloved of Pharaoh,

And I will teach you how to be a god.

An Invocation to Antinous Bakkheios

O Antinous Dionysus!

Your votaries call out to you, for we are tired.

We are weary. We are thirsty. Our limbs are heavy.

Our hearts are heavier. Our spirits sink.

We labor and we struggle, we sleep

and wake unrefreshed to labor and struggle more.

O Antinous Dionysus, Antinous Epiphanes,

Come to us now! Come to us, Antinous Bakkheios!

We are parched and in need of refreshment.

Come and bring us the wine of your joy,

The joy of living, the zest for life!

Come and loosen our limbs for the dance,

Straighten our backs that have been bent in our labors,

Widen our shoulders that have hunched over computers,

Free our hips and our asses that our minds may follow.

Come and dance with us, bring us the blessing

Of fellowship, the mood of the party,

The lubrication of intoxication. Join hands with us

That we may join hands with one another

And celebrate all that is good, all beauty

And pleasure, tastes and scents, the body

And the earth, that which grows and dies

And lives again, the tenacious vine and

The sleek, ravenous animal in ourselves

And in the world, all of your blessings,

Antinous, Antinous Dionysus, Antinous Bakkheios!

IO EVOHE!

(Written for the Bakkheion in honor of Antinous at Many Gods West 2017, at the request of Jay Logan.)

The Declaration of Antinous the Justified

I am Antinous. I am Osiris. I am Antinous the Justified.

 

I am the one who was lost and found himself.

I am the one who was drowned and breathed again.

I am the one whom Hapi took and Isis gave back again.

Where the red lotus bloomed, I have died,

And now I live again for ever.

 

I have not done the things which ought not to be done.

My heart has been weighed in the hall of Ma’at and pronounced pure.

Anubis has justified me. The forty-two judges have justified me.

Osiris has justified me and given me his crook and flail.

 

I have passed by the white cypress tree and the spring that flows beneath it.

Child of earth and heaven, I have drunk from the water of Memory,

And I know my true name, which is

ASKION KATASKION LIX TETRAX

DAMNAMENEUS AISIA ENDASION.

I have the favor of Persephone, the dread queen,

And with Hades’ blessing I walk in the groves of Elysium.

With the wings and the staff of Hermes,

The Messenger, the Guide of the Dead,

I come and go as I please.

 

Like a kid I have fallen into milk.

Like grapes I have been crushed and fermented and poured into wine.

Like a goat I have been torn apart and devoured

And discovered and assembled anew.

I have found myself and lost myself in the dance.

I bear the thyrsus of Dionysus and wear his ivy crown and leopard pelt.

 

I have ascended on high from the deepest depth.

I have vanquished the archons and mounted the heights

In the Boat of Millions of Years.

I have adorned Aquarius and the stars of the Eagle.

I have shone my light in healing and prophecy like Apollon.

He has given me his lyre that I may play for the Muses.

With Orion and his hounds I have hunted the heavens,

The earth, and the underworld. I am welcome in every place.

 

I have passed the seven gates of Ereshkigal

And returned to shine with the dawn.

I was in the tomb of Jesus and at the banquet of his consummation.

I have entered the domain of Hel and brought forth my bride Melinoe.

There is no place where I have not been welcomed

And no place where my star cannot guide.

I am Antinous Osiris the Justified, Antinous Hermes

The Guide, Antinous Dionysus and Antinous Apollon,

Child of earth and starry heaven,

Beautiful, just, benevolent.

(This was written for the rites held for Antinous at Many Gods West 2017, at the request of Jay Logan.)

POEM: The Eagle’s Star

Antinous rises tonight
Tonight he bestrides the constellations,
bridging Aquarius and Aquila
Heralded by Muses and poets,
he ascends the heavens
to claim the Boat of Millions of Years
The archons of the underworld are defeated
Their perversions no match for his terrible beauty
Fear and hatred, greed and lust
flee from the light of his countenance
Hail, Antinous! Star of beauty in the night sky!
Hail, Antinous! Navigator of the celestial Barque!
Hail, Antinous! You are the journey, you are the guide,
you yourself are the destination!
Hail, Antinous! The beautiful boy rises in the east!

POEM: To Tolkien on his birthday

You wandered among the trees, pipe gripped
between your teeth, dreaming of elder days,
when you might have been a poet singing
in a firelit hall. Instead you wandered among
the trees and told your tales to friends in pubs
and wandered back to dreary students
grubbing at the ancient roots of language.
Every language a mythology, every mythology
a universe: Your languages, your mythology,
your universe endure, your memory enshrined
along with Homer, Virgil, Dante, Amergin
and Taliesin and the lost poets of the North,
Ent-namer, mythmaker, word-lover, Elf-friend.

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