Monday, January 12, 2004

Raoul's Odyssey

Jus could not help posting this here.
Piece of work by Raoul, am sure i ll enjoy his works for years to come

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Glossary to Greek Mythological Figures for the unInitiated :)
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Zeus: The king of gods (also called Soter and Chronos).
Hera: Zeus' consort and Queen of the gods.
Odysseus: Human who defied the gods. Hero of Homer's epic 'Odyssey'.
Phaedrus: A Greek philosopher (not a mythological figure)
Achelous: Greek river god.
Aeolos: Greek god of wind and air.
Moros: Greek god of Doom.
Typhoeus: A giant volcano-demon that hurled red-hot rocks at the sky and
boiled forth great storms of fire. Associated with typhoons.
Poseidon: Greek god of earthquakes and the sea.
Selene: Greek moon goddess and teacher to the magicians.
Ares: Greek war god of storms and hurricanes, also considered a father
of the gods.
Athena: Greek goddess of war and wisdom.
Hades: Greek god of death and keeper of the underworld.
Hermes: The messenger of the gods. It is his duty to guide the souls of
the dead down to the underworld.
Acheron: One of the five rivers that need to be crossed to gain entry to
the netherworld.
Mount Olympus: The abode of the gods. The myths are somewhat vague on
whether it is an actual mountain or a region of the heavens.
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God Shuffled his Feet

-Raoul P

"Who is it this time," thundered Zeus
The king of the Olympians in his abode atop Mount Olympus
"That dares challenge the might o' the Gods
Has man learnt not from the follies of Odysseus
That no foolish mortal can aspire to conquer the divine.

"Hercules had the strength of fifty men
And could fell a tree with his fist
But even he was powerless against the axe of Ares
What hope then has this puny Phaedrus
It is merely his impudence that brings him here."

"Careful there, my Lord," replied Hera
With a touch of reproach in her voice
"Judge not this man by his strength
For though he possess'th nor spear nor sword
He is far from unarmed.

"The weapon of reason bears he
With logic doth he battle his rival
You would do well not to take him lightly, my Lord
For his resolve is strong
And he is no stranger to adversity."

*****************
Through the mighty gates of Olympus ambled
The frail figure of Phaedrus
His back was a little hunched, his shoulders drooped
But his eyes gleamed with an intensity
That outshone a thousand stars.

Zeus greeted the bow solemnly
(For he had been warned)
"Say your piece, noble Scholar"
He asked of Phaedrus; "For I grant you this
That I may judge your plea."

"O mighty ruler of the skies!" Phaedrus began
"For aeons you have ruled over us
Bles't us with good fortune, protected us from ruin
And punished us with swift justice
When we so much as erred.

"For aeons we have loved you
And exalted you as our king
Built shrines in your honour, slay'd armies of men
And sacrificed our flesh and blood to appease your whims;
But now, we wish to be enslaved no more.

"For long we have revered you
Like a child doth his father
Ador'd you, and fear'd you
And prayed to you for comfort
But now, 'tis time to set your children free.

"Let your children be free
For they have grown out of your shadow
Let them choose their own paths
And design their own destinies
For they need not hold your hand anymore."

"Indeed, wise Phaedrus," smiled Zeus
"I had been told of your astuteness
And heard tales of your conquests
But it seems your repute belies your prowess
People merely ascribe your insolence to wisdom.

"Delusional child! Do you not see
That man is yet as feeble as he is fickle
'Tis true that he has grown in opulence
And his girth is as wide as his gait
But that is merely because the Gods favour him so.

"Count your blessings that Achelous and Aeolos
Bestow their fortunes upon you
And that Moros spares you from his doom
So that you may sip the blessed wine
From the cup of joy that brimmeth over."

Phaedrus stood as calm as ever
With a smile upon his lips, as if to mock Zeus
"It is not I who is delusional, Revered Father!
Indeed 'tis true that the Gods serve us well
But that is only for we give them no choice.

"For Achelous and Aeolos have long been caged
And serve us now like galley slaves
Moros is but a distant memory
With no more than a scar to remind us of him.
Merely a bad dream that we rubbed off our eyes.

"Bless us, indeed!
It is not the Gods that bestow fortunes upon us
But we who bequeath them their powers
Revere them, venerate them
Appease them to satisfy our own whims and fancies."

"Enough of this blasphemy!" cried Zeus, not amused anymore
"Do you think you can tame too the might of Typhoeus
Who spews spears of fire and arrows of sleet?
Is your sword keener than his bite
Or has your hide indeed grown so thick?

"Tell me, knave scholar!
Can you face the wrath of Poseidon
Whose tempestuous moods barely reveal
Dark secrets concealed in his breast
The merest depths of which you cannot fathom

"For all your new found wisdom
Can you betray yet the guile of Ares
Or withstand the valour of Athena
Who for aeons have glut on your avarice
And torment forever your misguided souls."

Phaedrus stood still his ground, unfazed by the diatribe
"Ares and Athena we fear not, for they are foes no more
But have joined the ardent armies of men
They maim now, but on our command
The scars of Selene stand testimony to our alliance

"We fear not either the spew of Typhoeus
It is but a cinder compared to our breath
The almighty Poseidon too lies wounded at our feet
With a dagger through his breast
His darkness not such a secret anymore

"Even your majestic thunderbolt, Great King
Has lost its brilliance of yore
For it strikes not awe in the hearts of men anymore
Wise Soter! I beseech you to relinquish your throne
Ere your crown itself is trampled to dust!"

Zeus was indignant now
As he flew into a fit of rage
The ground shook beneath his feet
His hair wreathed in fire
But in his heart, he knew he was losing the battle

The puny Phaedrus was proving to be
A worthier opponent than he had reckoned
But the king of Gods would not give in so easily
He had still one last card up his sleeve
One last trick; his final and most potent weapon

"It would seem", said He
That I have underestimated the might of man
Indeed he has grown strong; enough to rule the Earth
But is he shrewd enough
To cheat yet the scythe of Death?

"Presumptuous fool!
Can you not see that man is yet fallible
His spirit may have gained in strength
His mind soared past the skies
But his body is still mortal as the leaf of Fall

"For as long as Hades rules over the netherworld
Before him must you bow your head
And rest at the mercy of Hermes
To take you across the mournful Acheron
Whence all are welcome, but none may return."

For once Phaedrus was silent
As he stood there lost in thought
A hint of a smile escaped the lips of Zeus
He knew it was all over
The battle for Olympus had finally been won.

But then he caught the look in Phaedrus' eye
And the smile vanished from his lips
This was not the look of defeat he expected
If anything, those eyes shone brighter than ever
With a shudder, Zeus realized what they purposed.

*****************
As he stood there deep in thought
Phaedrus knew what must be done
Zeus had shown him the way
And it wouldn't be long ere he would be back
The battle may be over, but the war was far from won.

As Phaedrus turned to leave
He bowed courteously to the Gods
His head still high in pride
But sitting uneasily on his high throne of power
Zeus, the king of the Gods, shuffled his feet.


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My remarks : Awesome , may be i should start greek mythology again :)


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