TREKKING TO Mt. OLYMPUS

They’ll probably be asleep when you get there.
“Do Not Disturb.”
Or they’ll be tetchy -
“No, we don’t want to see anyone today!” -
or away for the weekend.
“Were they expecting you? No?
Well, I’m sorry…”
Moreover, being a rational, sceptical sort of guy
you don’t believe they’re possessed of magic powers.
Just a lot of capricious, sometimes heartless jokers,
doing what they want, indifferent
on the whole
to the fate of others
and careless with mortals’ lives.
Yet you must make this trip,
however rough the road, however much
you’d really like to stay home.
And you must, when you arrive, offer them your gifts.
Talents, riches, children...
For if you don’t, you can be sure that
piqued
they’ll track you down, destroy you;
or worse,
they’ll put a curse
on all you weren’t prepared to give
and laugh as it turns to dust.
Besides,
if you don’t go there,
where are you going to go?

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