five short chapters from the age of gods & mortals

I.

prometheus was generous / he was basically alright / he leaned down from the clouds to the ground / to give all the smokeless mortals a light / and if his punishment was a bit over the top and livery / for such a naive and unauthorised delivery / still, the laparotomising eagle always took flight / and the poor guy’s liver grew back each night

II.

the medusa / was a serial user & abuser / every day a bad hair day / (the classic gorgon confusion / any new relationship a foregone conclusion) / but perseus got the heads up / on the practicalities of this particular pre-nup / wore cool mirror shades / that paid off in spades / and just as he practised in rehearsal / did all his sword fighting in reversal / ended up tossing her hissing head in a sack / and whistling heroically, sauntered back

III.

scylla and charybdis / a couple of mean-minded sisters / who took a terrible maritime toll / one a monstrous snake and the other basically a hole / they lived either side of the strait of messina / guarding the water inbetweener / royally and orally destroying / anything buoyantly annoying / until odysseus / stealthy & inconspicuous / taking the line of least resistance / managed to / find a way through / and okay – so a half dozen heros got eaten by scylla / but at least the boat made the homebound flotilla

IV.

labyrinthitis is rarely fatal / except if you’re a cretan youth or neonatal / because that’s where a bunch of them got sent / every year as punishment / the labyrinth was this crazy maze / built by daedulas in happier days / before icarus and his fickle attitude / to altitude / failing so spectacularly in his fatherly devotion / by hurtling curls-first into the ocean / so anyway / the labyrinth / basically a plinth / in the middle / of an underground puzzle / with a griddle / for the minotaur to get snacky with the kiddle / until down came theseus / muscles gleaming with greaseus / who straightway cut him to piecius / lopping off his head / and then winding his way back with a ball of thread

V.

the chimera! the chimera! / most terrifying creature of the antic era / body of a goat and the head of shakira / and the tail from a snake / and fiery breath that would burn and bake / and giant paws that would pound the ground and make the houses shake / which the general population found pretty hard to take / until – step forth bellerophon! / ripped & ready for the slay-a-thon / he leapt up onto pegasus, his horse / tough as a rhinocerorse / but aerodynamically better of course / together they swooped on the hapless creature / and ran it through with his most prominent feature / (a long & lethally lead-tipped spear / which pretty much did the trick, I hear)
medusa