Friday, October 11, 2013

"Medusa" by Noah West

You are beautiful: with hair that glows, and eyes like water,
and any man who sees you falls in love.
and a man is sent by his family to earn your affections:
and another, and another and another.
Men with flowers and poems,
but you serve in the Goddess Athena’s temple:
you must, by oath, turn them all down.

One day, a man comes to your temple, and he is made of light, and sea,
but most importantly, he is made of power:
and you recognize him for what he is,
a god, a tempest,
he rages and rattles and destroys,
and you are left in the temple,
because you were a beautiful young woman, and your hair shone with light, and your eyes were like water,
but these are not weapons,
and you are nothing but rubble.

Your patron, Athena, Goddess of Wisdom,
sees what has happened, and gives you power.
She gives you hair that slithers, and eyes like stone,
and you are rebuilt.

You run away from the ruined temple, and you live in a cave, alone.
And then a man is sent to kill you:
and another, and another, and another.
Men with swords and spears,
but you were blessed by the Goddess Athena,
and you must, to survive, turn them to stone.
You leave them as rubble: you have that power, now.

Until one day,
a man comes,
and he is filled with light and sky,
and, most importantly, armed with power.
And this man looks at your defenses, sneers at you for protecting yourself,
as he steps on the crumbled dust of the men before him,
dares to enter your home,
and he is a tempest.
he rages and rattles and destroys,
and he leaves you in ruin,
and you are nothing but rubble

is not the story of a hero conquering evil,
but a greek tragedy.
do not step
on the ruins of the woman
who was destroyed,

and brought to rubble again.

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