‘Mystic Marriage’, from “A Seasoning of Lust”

from: thoughtsthattoddhasn't had.blogspot.com

We have been kicking around this issue of why we write and why we would bother to keep a blog.  I would suppose there are many reasons to do so, but for hopefully serious writers it’s really a different issue.  We write because ultimately  we can’t not write:  it’s like a river running deep and there  may be issues of blockage or other things that frustrate our attempts …but all that said, we plow on.

I think the point of all of our attempts is to improve.

It’s a craft after all, this cobbling together of words.  It takes some  vision and a lot of work.  We need to read  broadly for that vision to develop and those who don’t are condemned to mediocrity.   There are a lot of blogs out there that don’t attempt to do much except think they interest the public with their agony in life.  They use it as a tool of self-therapy.  This is unavoidable for all of us, because we think our personal problems are issues of great interest…to others besides ourselves.  I’ve done this many times on this blog, but hopefully I have come to understand some things.

People come here to read not because I have answers or because I have their common agony in life.  Sometimes  we do, but  it’s not a common bitching site.

They come here to read my writing.  I owe these readers the very best I can squeak out.  That is a process:  it takes time and a concerted effort on my part to do so.   I don’t write here for affirmation or attention, though in some cases, I get that. (And attention can be good and bad.)  I write here because I try to entertain with my writing and that is reason enough.  Probably what most of us aim for:  we are storytellers,   after all.

I have a great group of fellow writers around me.  Bill Penrose, Nick Nicholson, Dan Holloway, Steve Isaak, and a few others.  Most of these excellent writers can be found on the blog roll to the right of this text.  All of them have worked hard to push their writing upward: they are no slight writers, either, and they always stand to support and help me work out issues.  But the lion’s share of that comes from my own efforts.

If we don’t make those efforts, we can’t call ourselves writers.  At least not in the category I want to belong.

Lady Nyo

“Mystic Marriage

Mino begs a gift of Poseidon and

from the sea comes a white bull.

Glorious Bull! With hooves of gold,

eyes of fire and sweet of breath.

Pasiphae, Mino’s wife

besotted with the sight of him

begs Mino to spare his sword

and offers her handmaidens

for the sacrifice.

Tender-hearted Mino allows his wife

to rule his judgment

all sense is pushed aside,

havoc soon overturns the throne.

Pasiphae builds a wooden cow

and besotted with lust

climbs into the decoy

Seduces the golden hoofed Bull.

The Minotaur is born, suckled from

Pasiphae’s paps,

grew wild –the labyrinth

built to imprison him.

Unnatural love- making produces

unnatural monster Minotaur

half man and half bull,

given freedom only in a maze,

fed on virgins of both sexes.

But Poseidon has the last laugh.

He was the gift, the snow white bull

and cuckolds Mino

for his greed.

Mystic marriage overturns a throne and kingdom,

reveals the deception of woman,

produces monster offspring.

In his maze all paths lead to the grave.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2009, 2010

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6 Responses to “‘Mystic Marriage’, from “A Seasoning of Lust””

  1. Margie Says:

    Well, we (women) did it again! Destroyed the world with our weakness! LOL! Seriously, I liked this poem’s imagery very much. I don’t know this myth at all, except for the existence of the Minatour. Is it based heavily on the myth? What an interesting story – I think I’ll have to look it up!

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  2. ladynyo Says:

    Hi Margie!

    Thank you! This was of two (?) years ago, when I was reading and writing a lot of poems and flashers (200 word stories…not scenes) from mythologies….Japanese, Greek, Roman, Irish (in the previous post: Cu Chulainn and Emer, Lug, etc.) and Germanic myths.

    I was on a kick back then.

    I’m not exactly sure how far and close my poem follows on the mythology of Mino and his queen. But I have two books that fascinate me: Bullfinch’s ” Mythology “, and Edith Hamilton’s “Mythology”. It’s in there …this particular mythology, but I can’t find it right now in either book.

    I think the trick of writing poetry or flashers (or short stories) from these mythologies is to absorb the original story and then do your own piece based on the ‘historical’ facts….or mess them up a bit.

    Previously, in ages past….the Classical Education would have made these stories familiar, points of literature to be drawn upon. They also would have been read in the original Greek and Latin. Our educations are not so today. We struggle with these myths and just put them on the back of the shelf.

    I wrote a rather longish story (erotica) about the Minotaur….a woman in a club meets a man that has some disturbingly familiar characteristics of the Minotaur. He does seduce her, but doesn’t eat her. That came out from that beginning study of mythology.

    An important objective that has developed on this blog is to bring books, myths, literature to a reading public that might have missed some of these things. Being a writer full time allows me this. I can read, and I can report what excites me. Hopefully it can excite other readers and they can develop their own interests based on what they read here.

    Except for a few entries…I don’t do book reports (“The Kite Runner” is an exception to that). Others, like Steve Isaak (on the blog roll to the right: readingbypublight.com) do a remarkable job and a broad job of this! I admire them who can do it.

    As for imagery…..I can’t think of a better base for this than the Greek and German mythologies. They are rip roarin’ stories that would entertain, amaze and inspire any listener.

    Thanks, Margie, for reading and leaving a comment. If what is written here inspires others to read and write what catches their fancy, then I feel this blog does some specific good.

    Hugs, coz.
    Jane

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  3. bren Says:

    There might be more than one version of the myth but this is the one I know:

    Before he ascended the throne of Crete, Minos struggled with his brothers for the right to rule. Minos prayed to Poseidon to send him a snow-white bull, as a sign of approval by the gods for his reign. He promised to sacrifice the bull as an offering, and as a symbol of subservience. A beautiful white bull rose from the sea, but when Minos saw it, he coveted it for himself. He assumed that Poseidon would not mind, so he kept it and sacrificed the best specimen from his herd instead. When Poseidon learned about the deceit, he made Pasipha, Minos’ wife, fall madly in love with the bull. She had Daedalus, the famous architect, make a wooden cow for her. Pasipha climbed into the decoy and fooled the white bull. The offspring of their lovemaking was a monster called the Minotaur.

    The creature had the head and tail of a bull on the body of a man. It caused such terror and destruction on Crete that Daedalus was summoned again, but this time by Minos himself. He ordered the architect to build a gigantic, intricate labyrinth from which escape would be impossible. The Minotaur was captured and locked in the labyrinth. Every year for nine years, seven youths and maidens came as tribute from Athens. These young people were also locked in the labyrinth for the Minotaur to feast upon.

    When the Greek hero Theseus reached Athens, he learned of the Minotaur and the sacrifices, and wanted to end this. He volunteered to go to Crete as one of the victims. Upon his arrival in Crete, he met Ariadne, Minos’s daughter, who fell in love with him. She promised she would provide the means to escape from the maze if he agreed to marry her. When Theseus did, she gave him a simple ball of thread, which he was to fasten close to the entrance of the maze. He made his way through the maze, while unwinding the thread, and he stumbled upon the sleeping Minotaur. He beat it to death and led the others back to the entrance by following the thread.

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  4. ladynyo Says:

    Hey Bren!!

    THANK YOU!! I couldn’t remember the myth, but this is much more involved than my poem….LOL!

    However, I am realizing that these myths are varied with the telling. I’ve been reading Edith Hamilton (1867-1963) today. and what a Classicist she was. Apparently until the 1970’s or later her version of Greek mythology was the standard in high schools and college study on mythology.

    There are versions on the same theme apparently, mostly on the parentage of the Gods and Goddesses….and alliances, too.

    Thank you so much for posting this very full account of Mino and company!

    My poem is a shorthand version of the story, but of course I don’t write that Minotaur was beaten to death. Didn’t know.

    Hugs,
    Jane

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  5. Margie Says:

    This is one of the reasons why I love this blog. Jane, you piqued my interest in a subject which I had not thought about in decades; Bren chimed in with a clear and concise telling of the myth; and I have another subject to research on the internet! Love it!

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  6. ladynyo Says:

    Margie!

    What would we do without the internet? LOL!

    And thank you! That is the highest compliment you could give me. I think life is full of those things we haven’t had time before..things that piqued our interest in some ways….and only when we get to a certain place in life can be indulge in them. It this blog helps in that purpose….then it’s doing a better job.

    Bren gave a wonderful telling of this myth. And it certainly made me want to research it further. I have a couple of pieces (flashers, again) I wrote about different mythologies….all of them rather erotic…that I will post in a series here.

    Thank you, Margie!! Life is a continuing bowl of research.

    Hugs,
    Jane

    Like

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