As part of some rumination with a group of satyrs, maenads, and other fascinating folk calling themselves the Bacchic Underground, we were tasked with making art from Dionysian themes. This week’s homework assignment was to contemplate an ancient story about Dionysos and some pirates. Following is my attempt at rambling poetry:
The ship has sailed, I tell you. It’s been headed toward the Deep since that strange night when we picked up the boy on the island. No mere boy it was. But at the time, only one of us was paying attention. He got to leave the ship intact.
Since then, we’ve followed: swimming circles in the wine-dark water Maybe it is wine? Or maybe blood? No matter now. We keep swimming, because if we stop we sink down down down to where the faceless things live, nine days past Hades’ rusted gates to the place the island-boy called home. They tried chaining him there, too. Who chains a loosener?
A great many new friends have been made. Presentations have been excellent, even challenging. In the hallway I heard someone say “the only thing I hate about this conference is that I feel like I’m stupid. There are so many intelligent people here, making me think.”
Hard things have been discussed. Alliances have been made. Arguments have been hashed out, or tabled, or set aside in favor of attempting to work together. Sure, not everyone is ready for this or getting as much out of it as I have. But the signs are encouraging.
There’s already talk of another. I’ll be there. Will you?