Category Archives: Bacchic Things

Submission to the Asklepios Agon

For Asklepios
By Alexeigynaix

In days of old, Asklepios,
we left for You our offerings:
a votive sculpture—eyes, a leg—
in thanks for Your kind healing and
Your answers to our pleading prayers.

Asklepios, Physician, You
Who Heal all those in need of You:
I hurt, and hurt, and don’t know why.
You guided those who found the drug
called ibuprofen in results
of sugar degradation. You
have thereby somewhat eased my pain.

I hurt, and hurt, and don’t know why.
I ask, Asklepios, that You
find me something—anything—
to further ease and soothe the pain.

Look here: I pour to you red wine,
and coffee mixed with chocolate milk.

I have no skill in molding clay;
I know no potter who might make
a votive sculpture I could buy
to offer at Your temple door.

My skill with pencil coloring
needs work, but here it is. I vow
an offering: I’ll draw myself
to offer at Your temple door—
for if you find a way to bring
my usual pain from five or six
with spikes to seven, eight, or nine
down to a four or (please!) a three
and hardly ever spiking six
(for I cannot recall, just now,
what none or one, or even two,
feel like; I’ve never felt a ten,
for which, Asklepios, thank You),
you will have given back to me
myself.

Modern Asklepios

Submission to Asklepios’ Agon

To Asklepios
by Emily K., MD

Hail to You, Asklepios,
Still honored today.
Master of medicines.
Surgeon with skillful hand.
Healer of the mind at peace.

You had several shrines downtown in the city where I trained.
Tall tower hospitals lined the road from the harbor to the parliament.
Here is a shrine to the nurses who died in the Great War.
The men who cured honey-urine disease did so in these laboratories
Your own image was carved in stone above the hospital doors;
Apollon introducing You to Chiron
Money and power have changed the temples’ faces now, but the hospitals remain.
Your memorials and art are all carefully preserved.
Except one votive plea, which was discarded;
“Hospital Zone- Quiet” it read in black-on-yellow sign letters.
I last saw it perched above a worker jackhammering by the subway vent.
Sleep and dream attended Your temples in the old days
We have forgotten that.

Hail to You, Asklepios,
Still honored today.
Master of medicines.
Surgeon with skillful hand.
Healer of the mind at peace.

Quiet green trees surrounded the place where supplicants sought You
Neither Birth nor Death made a home there,
For You suffered greatly both to be born and then again to die.
Your father God brought You into life through burning flesh and brilliant fire.
You are your mother’s son too;
Coronis knew Apollon’s holiest light, yet still sought comfort with dim mortal love.
Apollon inflamed her with death and fire till at last she glowed like a goddess,
Though He rescued You before her white wings crisped to blackened ash.

Your death too, was all noise and blinding light; a thunderbolt from Zeus.
You knew the price of stealing souls back from Hades.
Yet You pitied us and brought back the mourned-for dead, easing for a while the bitterness of mortal grief.
Sympathy for the weak and merely mortal is the gift Coronis gave You.

Hail to You, Asklepios
Still honored today
Master of medicines.
Surgeon with skillful hand.
Healer of the mind at peace.

You took Your lessons from Chiron the centaur.
Chiron taught you pharmacy;
The Gorgon’s blood breeds serpents.
These bring You herbs to poison or to cure, as Your staff directs.
Chiron taught you surgery;
The deft touch that cures is Yours, to cut the sinew space apart and leave the living blood and fine filaments of sense intact.
Chiron taught you therapy;
Man is mind and animal all bound up in one;
Who better than a centaur to teach you that?
Your words brought peace to suffering souls
You gave the best sleep and healing dreams
The body healed soon after.

Hail to You, Asklepios,
Still honored today.
Master of medicines.
Surgeon with skillful hand.
Healer of the mind at peace.

Your sons were Therapeutae in your line;
Highly honoured Machaon, Podaleirios and Telesphoros.
Your wife and daughters too were blessed with skill.
I am glad to follow in their footsteps.
Epione, your beloved wife, who soothes away suffering.
Aceso, who walks alongside the patient in their journey.
Iaso, who restores to strength and function.
Aglaea, who adorns the body once more with beauty.
Hygeia, who makes whole and clean.
Panacea, who cures all ills.

I don’t practice near Your tall towered temples in the city far away.
I have a few beds in a hospital out in the country,
A few days a week dedicated to Your service.
Still, God of Physicians, teach me a little of Your skill.
Even a little of Your quiet
Someday I will need Your help; may I find You in the care I will receive.

Let me remember the words You taught me;
Who bears the serpent, serves.

Hail to You, Asklepios,
Still honored today.
Master of medicines.
Surgeon with skillful hand.
Healer of the mind at peace.

Submission to the Asklepios Agon

To Asclepius
by Courtney B.

The dead rise to His staff,
Great Nurturer and Restorer of Life.
Yellow sunlight shines from His eyes.
The light of life is inside Him.
Graceful son of Apollo, merciful Staff Bearer,
You hear the cries of the sick and the dying;
You bring the sick back from the brink of the black Beyond.
You taught man the healing secrets of the plants;
whispered the recipes of brews and potions to the kindly souls in Your service.
Your mercy is truly more than we deserve.
Cut From The Womb.
Snake-Stirrer!
Elegant emerald snakes adorn Your brow,
celestial yet present in every hospital and house of healing.
We pray You cut us open and cleanse us of miasma,
of hubris, of impiety, of atheism, of doubt.
Help us be the best devotees we can be.
Praise His Holy name: Asclepius!
Thank Him that you still breathe the sweet airs of life.

First Submission to the Asklepios Agon

Hurrah! I receive the first submission to Asklepios’ Agon and I am glad. I don’t think our healing Deities get half the attention and veneration They deserve. 🙂

In Gratitude
by Victoria C.

I am not accustomed to Gods being overly kind.
Loving yes, magnificent yes, but kind in a way
that does not sear the heart,
not so much.
I am not accustomed to Gods
Whose touch leaves no lasting mark
except health and healing and peace.
You brought me that, Son of Apollo,
unexpected boon and blessing.
You brought me that and raised me up
and set me back on my feet
and enabled me to live again
instead of just survive.
Yours were the hands
that dredged me out of the darkness
of my depression,
out of the wracking torture of my body’s pain.
‘Thank you’ are such paltry words
with which to repay such a grace.
They are the words that I have though,
and I bring them to You,
with a heart overflowing with joy.
I sing praises of You, Asklepios,
Wisest and most gentle of Healers.
To the Son of Apollo,
I will always pray.

*************

Be sure to check out my other sites:

Wyrd Curiosities at Etsy

My academia.edu page

My amazon author page.

Walking the Worlds Journal

My art blog at Krasskova Creations

My blog about all things strange, weird and medieval.

And if you like what you see, consider becoming a sponsor at Patreon.

Don’t Piss off Apollon

Once a month I do readings at a local shop. The owner is a friend of mine, it helps her out, and I usually enjoy doing it. Yesterday was one of those days. Now when I do this, I don’t take my entire kit. I choose two or three systems and yesterday, I decided to make offerings to Hermes, Apollon, and Dionysos with the intention of reading with a sortilege system owned by Apollon, and the Dionysian leaves. I had one client. It was a clusterfuck.

The client Mikey (yes, his actual name. after what happened, fuck it. I’m not using a pseudonym) came in asking with what decks I read. I carefully explained that I would not be reading with tarot, and explained the systems I use. He asked me and the young man behind the counter several times, a little confused that I didn’t use cards. I’ve found that tarot is so well known that people often have trouble understanding that there are other systems of divination out there, so I didn’t mind the questions but I had a feeling that he was going to be an unpleasant client. Still, people don’t generally come to us when things are going well (though they should! It’s best to get divination quarterly – I do for myself as a matter of course and was always counseled to do so by my elders because it is preventative) and it’s our job as diviners to sometimes deal with people in crisis. He was supposed to have a half hour reading. It lasted about an hour and a half and from the beginning it was ugly.

I began the reading with a system dedicated to Apollon and, of course, as always before seeing any clients, I did my opening prayers, which included a prayer to Apollon. Mikey was unhappy and irritated that I was using a sortilege system and not cards. He kept getting frustrated when he received answers he didn’t like. He kept asking the same question or series of questions in different ways because he didn’t like the answers. He outright refused to do any prescription given to him to better his situation and then he started getting rude and rather aggressive. At this point, I told him that if he was unwilling to do the prescription then he wasn’t going to get what he wanted. He started to argue, becoming both whiny and belligerent and …that’s the point when Apollon gave him a seizure.

I felt Apollon reach through the crown of my head and push out and at that point Mikey had a seizure ( just when his level of disrespect for the ordered space of the mat, the divination process, the diviner and by extension the Gods involved reached a certain level. It didn’t help that he sort of insulted Apollon’s mother). I sat through it, gave him some further advice when it was done (more counseling than divination) and finally got him to leave. He staggered out and it is my sincere wish that he never, ever returns to plague any future diviner who might happen to be on the premises.

I found out from the young man handling the counter that Mikey has a long history of becoming verbally abusive to diviners and has even made one particular diviner cry. When he’s not told what he wants, he verbally attacks them. It never got that far with me (probably good for Mikey’s sake, because I’d have bodily thrown him out. I don’t take shit like that from clients or anyone else). Apparently, several diviners who frequent the shop have refused to read for him. My question to the shop: why do you allow him to keep coming in? I don’t find that particularly ethical.

At any rate, the level of pollution was so intense that I felt the need to do divination to see if I could keep seeing clients or if I needed to go home and cleanse. Pollution is one thing, and Mikey was riddled with it, but being hit with pollution (as when a client moves from passive pollution to active offense against the Gods) when in an altered state is worse. Ironically the diviner is extremely vulnerable when in that open headspace. I initially asked “Do I need to leave?” And the answer was ‘no.’ Then I asked “Does Apollon want me to leave.” And I got a definite ‘yes.’ So I followed up by using Apollon’s oracle to ask for confirmation and received the following verse:

“Take the tripod and carry it from the temple…”

I immediately packed up and went home, texting my husband on the way to prepare a cleansing bath. As soon as I got home I went through intense cleansing and then did divination to see if I could continue to read in such a venue. (I can, but I now have new protocols for all in person clients).

Sannion also told me something that I didn’t know or had forgotten: there are accounts of Apollon doing exactly this in antiquity when his oracles were shown disrespect. Some Gods are more forgiving of such violations than others, but in the end, it’s not a game, it’s not a parlor trick, and it’s not for entertainment. Divination is sacred and when the diviner is at the mat he or she is serving in some cases as a direct mouthpiece for the Gods and ancestors. It is sacred work. It’s unfortunate that most clients no longer realize that and I think those of us who do this work in our communities have the added burden and obligation of teaching people anew how to position this as a sacral practice and how to approach the mat with reverence…because there are consequences when one doesn’t.

It’s not our job, as I was told yesterday, to make the client comfortable. It is our job to do the work. It is our job to be clean interpreters and transmitters of what the Gods and spirits provide. It is however, a reality that we will deal with clients – many quite well meaning—who do not know how to behave. I’m still a little stunned by yesterday and I have no answers for that. My protocols have been tightened to give them better warning and I do prepare most clients as well as I can but still…as the saying goes, shit happen. Sometimes, that’s going to backfire on those clients. Apollon especially is not a God with which to trifle. He protects those in His service.

*************

Be sure to check out my other sites:

Wyrd Curiosities at Etsy

My academia.edu page

My amazon author page.

Walking the Worlds Journal

My art blog at Krasskova Creations

My blog about all things strange, weird and medieval.

And if you like what you see, consider becoming a sponsor at Patreon.

New submission to the Orpheus Agon

Hymn to Orpheus
by Ian A.

Hail Orpheus,
Singer of songs of the great Theoi
Teacher of the mysteries

Hear my prayer
Guide me on my journey
You who braved the darkness of Hades
Bless my days with song
As you played for the rulers below
Help me not to look back
A lesson you learnt through pain
Give me the courage to face death
Knowing as you taught what lies beyond

Follower of Dionysos
Ripped apart by his maenads
Follower of Apollon
After you saw what lay in Hades
Guide me in my relationship with the gods
And inspire my tounge with praise
That I may sing of their glory

Current Submissions to the Orpheus and Achilles Agon

Here are the submissions that I’ve received so far for the Orpheus and Achilles agon which ends Saturday, 9pm EST. if you are considering submitting, please do so sooner rather than later. Winners will be determined via divination late Saturday.

[EDIT: I’ve added the latest submission from Sparrow as of 11:08 pm May 26):

Prayer to Orpheus
by Sparrow

I sing of the long haired and sweet voiced Orpheus
Son of bright Apollo and melodious Kalliope
Prophet of the wild and intoxicating Dionysos
Husband of faithful Eurydice
To you, great bard and prophet, I raise my voice in praise
Please hear this simple song.

You most gifted Orpheus
Could move trees and rocks whenever you sang and plucked your lyre.
The wild animals of the forest would become tame
And sit at your feet to hear your lovely song.
Fountains would stop flowing so they could hear your blessed music.

Please great Orpheus help me in my artistic pursuits
Please instill in me the discipline to practise my art every day
Please help foster any talent that I may have
Please help me to find inspiration and to continue to grow as an artist.

Praise be to you inspiring Orpheus!
May you always be remembered for your talent,
For your love for Eurydice,
And for your devotion to Dionysos.
Io Orpheus!

Prayer to Orpheus
By Neve Antheus

Hail to you,
Founder of traditions,
Connecting the worlds
By way of your songs and charms.

Hail to you,
Who penned hymns
To the immortal Theoi,
That we may piously call out.

Hail to you,
Maenadic decapitated
Oracular head washed ashore
To sing of holy powers evermore.

Prayer to Achilles and Patrokles
By J. Breuer

Son of gods, son of mortals,
Achilles and Patroclus,
Hear our prayer and attend to our voice.
We worship you,
We praise you,
We honor you in your glory.
Warriors together,
Friends, lovers, partners in life and afterlife,
We offer you these words of thanksgiving
And ask your blessings upon us.
Let us live that we may love,
Let us love that we may serve,
Let us serve that our devotion and observance
Be an example to others.
Achilles and Patroclus,
Let your presence fill our days with joy and comfort,
Let the pleasure you take in one another
Be the pleasure we take in your veneration.
Hear our prayer, heroes, and our rejoicing.
Receive our praise and may your holy names be known throughout the world,
Now and in all times.

Prayer to Achilles
by Andrew Bayless

Arise, O Swift-footed Achilles, the mightiest warrior in the Achaean army!
Son of Peleus and Thetis, you were fated to either live a long but forgettable life at home or to die a short but glorious life by fighting at Troy!
Your destiny was inevitable and so it was that you prepared to face the rage of war but it is this same rage that made your Goddess mother fear for your health.
Dutifully, your mother dipped your body in the Stygian river so that you would be invulnerable to all blows and cuts!
Bravely you fought on, proclaiming that you would rather burn up than fade away.
When it was revealed to you that your beloved Patroclus had been slain, you rushed to slay Man-killing Hector in retaliation.
Advised not to for it would assure your demise, you fought on anyways knowing that your valor would be rewarded in this life and in the next.
Even now we sing of your chase around the well-walked citadel and your victory over the mightiest of Priam’s sons.
Mighty Achilles, hear our prayer, and be with us always!
May we be guided by you to be ever bold in the face of doom.
May we rather burn up like you in a blaze of glory than fade away like a witless shade.
Io Achilles!

Prayer to Orpheus
by Andrew Bayless

Arise, O great Orpheus, blessed prophet and musician!
You who is celebrated for your sweet song, we contemplate your sway over creation for it is you who quelled the disorder within the natural world and within the hearts of your fellows with honey-like harmony!
Yet your crowning feat had yet to come.
On a quest to retrieve your love, the mysteries of life and death were revealed to you!
Wondrous Harrower of Hell, it is known by your followers that you returned with instructions necessary to save our souls from the fate that is due mortals.
O Orpheus, not even dismemberment could end your glory for your severed head is said to give oracles as true as those of Apollon at Delphi!
O great Orpheus, hear our prayer, forever guide us in the mysteries you delivered to humanity and continue to sing sweet words in our ears that we may be in accordance with your teachings.
May we hear your blessed lyre plucking out the tune to which we will dance in heaven!
Io Orpheus! 

orpheus painting 2x4

^Orpheus by G. Palmer (forthcoming)

Thanks to everyone who’s submitted so far!

*************

Be sure to check out my other sites:

Wyrd Curiosities at Etsy

My academia.edu page

My amazon author page.

Walking the Worlds Journal

My art blog at Krasskova Creations

My blog about all things strange, weird and medieval.

And if you like what you see, consider becoming a sponsor at Patreon.

Submission to Maia’s Agon

A Mother’s Love
by Sparrow

One of the most powerful things in the Kosmos,
Is a Mother’s love.
It endures and perseveres no matter what happens,
It protects and sustains the beloved Child.

This is the love that Maia felt for Hermes, Her beloved Son.
Maia who held baby Hermes in Her arms,
In the dark Cyllenian cave,
Protecting Him from Hera’s wrath.

Maia looked down at her beloved Child,
And saw that His hair was as curly as His Father’s.
He had a smile as sweet as His Mother’s,
And a twinkle in His eyes which was all His own.

Maia loved Her Child beyond reason and measure.
Baby Hermes knew this love well,
And promised His Mother one day they would not live in the shadowy cave,
They would live on radiant Mount Olympos and rightly take Their place
Among the other Gods.

Hermes was true to His word.
He became one of the Olympian Gods and brought Maia to Olympos.
What a glorious day for Maia and Hermes!

Hail to Maia, beloved Mother of Hermes,
Sweet and gentle Goddess,
May you always be praised, great Mother.
Io Maia!

Ode to Maia

Here is the next submission to the Maia agon, courtesy of Deo Mercurio, who emailed me with this link today.

Deo Mercurio

Seven are the daughters of Pleione,
whose stars bedazzle the winter sky—
      most beautiful of all the seven
      is Maia, daughter of Atlas.
She it is who rejoices in May flowers’ bloom,
the lengthening days, and the growing warmth.
      She makes the heart to quicken
      as desire swells in mortals’ souls—
and not in mortals’ alone, but you too,
thundering father Jove, could not resist her.

How did Jove effect his tryst with modest Maia,
dwelling in her cave in wind-swept Arcady?
      Let none divulge what passed therein;
      let none undo her wise discretion.
But all may know and celebrate her offspring,
glorious child of Maia, swift-footed messenger,
      clever in his charming words,
      subtle in his wily deeds—
for you, august Mercury, were born on Mount Cyllene,
born to gentle Maia, bedecked with flowers.

She it was first took you in her…

View original post 198 more words

Second Submission to Maia’s Agon

“To Maia, Mother of the Messenger”
Alexeigynaix

Pleione’s eldest daughter,
begotten by He Who Holds the Sky,
hail to You, O Maia.
Eldest Pleiad sister,
Whom Your sisters emulate,
hail to You, O Maia.
Mother to Luck-bringer,
nurse to Kallisto’s son,
hail to You, O Maia.
Guide to sailors,
guide to farmers,
hail to You, O Maia.
Lady of mountains,
Lady of caves,
hail to You, O Maia.

I beg Your aid, O Maia,
that I may be
a more dutiful child to my parents
as You are to Yours,
a more loving sibling to my siblings
as You are to Yours,
and should the Gods will it come to pass
that I have children,
a wise parent to my children
as You are to Yours.
Hail to You, O Maia.

*************

Be sure to check out my other sites:

Wyrd Curiosities at Etsy

My academia.edu page

My amazon author page.

Walking the Worlds Journal

My art blog at Krasskova Creations

My blog about all things strange, weird and medieval.

And if you like what you see, consider becoming a sponsor at Patreon.