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Aphrodite Tale

I was born of blood and storm.

I am the unmothered daughter of dismembered Heaven, his sex scythed from him and cast into Ocean by his youngest, most beloved son. Out of the wind-whirled waves, from the gore and spume on the surface of the sea, I emerged. Strange beginnings, for such beauty as mine. But do anger, betrayal, and violence not find a home in love?

In this world of Gods and Kings, fathers and soldiers, where blood-handed heroes are given heaven's honors, and Zeus, naming himself Law, commands by open threat of violence—how shall Love survive? When humanity's birthright of beauty goes unrecognized, and when mothers pass to their daughters that a woman's loveliness increases her value, yet is in itself vanity—how shall Beauty prosper? Love cannot play fair in such an age of iron brutality. Strategies and subterfuge, punishments and desperate deceits are the tricks I must turn.

And such tricks I have. My soft skin is white as the Heavenly lily, flushed with the rose of Earth. My hair is bright gold as the risen sun on the first morning of the world, and my eyes would shame the sapphire skies. My glance annuls the unlawful oaths of marriage while promising sweet secret pleasures. The stem of my waist is sinuous as the ever-renewing serpent, my slender hands clever and wicked. As the dawn-kissed domes of far temples so are the holy mounds of my breasts, and as the perfumed asphodel so do the petals of my sex guard Immortal Elysia. Grace and glamoury, invitation and persuasion, single-mindedness and strength, these are every one my received gifts.

For my favors, men erect tall towers; women beg to borrow a sliver of my shining. To win my rewards wars are launched, soldiers slaughtered, fair cities pulled down, navies built and burnt. My promises suade even the wills of the Immortals, and what I desire seeks me.

War, Madness, Deceit—these have all been my lovers. How else shall it be in this world?

Tales

Aida-Wedo
Amaterasu
Aphrodite
Ariadne
Arianrhod
Athene
Blodeuwedd
Bride
Cerridwen
Ch'ang O
Coyolxauhqui
Freyja
Ishtar
Kali
Kirke
Kore
Laverna
Lilith
Medusa
Pomona
Rhiannon
Sibyl