To Thanatos

To Thanatos, so kind and so good, I offer my praise.
Son of the darkness and the night, of wise Erebos
and raven-haired Nyx, brother of Hypnos who grants a respite
ephemeral and sweet, O Thanatos, you bring a repose
of a longer span–an endless sleep is yours to bestow.
Beautiful Thanatos, well-wreathed with poppies red as blood,
black-winged god, fleet-footed one, bearer of the sharp-edged sword
with which you cut a lock of hair from each who enters Hades’ realm:
some call you merciless, hard of heart, O god who takes
from us those we most love–and yet, dear Thanatos,
yours is a mercy great and freeing, a boundless comfort,
a final peace. O god who gives us life’s last blessing, I praise you.


To Ganymede

I offer my praise to Ganymede, great one of Troy,
son of the river-god’s daughter, companion of Eros,
fairest of mortal men. So beautiful you were,
O Ganymede, so bright a flower in the field,
that Zeus himself one summer day came down to you
from Olympos’ heights: a shepherd boy, you watched your herd
with care; in swept the great god on eagle’s wings
and carried you away to the hall of the gods,
to be his cup-bearer, to make you full welcome
among the deathless gods. Beloved of the thunderer,
O god who is a friend to lovers, I pray to you,
O Ganymede, I praise and honor you.

To Peitho

I call out to Peitho, great daughter of Ocean
and sea-striding Tethys, fair of fame and great of name.
Peitho who is the irresistible voice,
who is the sound of the surf, who is bird-song
and fair weather, whose gift it is to turn the tides,
to bring about a change in reason, I pray to you.
Companion of Aphrodite, beguiler of hearts,
refiner of feeling, yours is the divergence of passions,
the coaxing of lovers, the fascination of love;
you are seduction, the call of need to need;
you are the soul and sweetness of persuasion.
Peitho, herald of the heart, I honor you.

To Leto

Blessed Leto, bright daughter of Phoebe
and Coeus the wise, beloved of Zeus,
bearer of children mighty and fair,
shining Apollo and bold-hearted Artemis.
O best of mothers, O friend of mothers,
yours was a travail unlike any other,
a journey beset by sorrow and strife
until, at long last, you found shelter
at Delos, that welcoming isle. O Leto,
O mother of gods, O goddess of mothers,
beautiful you are, great-hearted and kind.
I honor you always, O glorious one.

To Styx

I call to great Styx who wards the river
that bounds the realm of deep-hearted Hades.
Wise eldest daughter of Ocean and Tethys,
eldest of those three thousand fair maids,
yours is the power behind an oath,
yours is the might to break the forsworn,
yours is the comfort of the forsaken.
O solace of those with a righteous wrath,
with hearts overfull of rage and revenge,
with the anger of the just, I call to you.
I honor you, good and gracious Styx,
I offer you my praise and seek your blessing.

To Perses

I call to great Perses, almighty destroyer,
son of wise Krios and tender Eurybia,
beloved companion of bright-eyed Asteria,
father of Hekate, mistress of magics
who holds such honors in all the worlds,
warrior of the Titan gods, breaker of bonds
and defender of your brethren. Perses
who is the wisest of gods, great of learning,
great of judgment, discerning one
who knows what must be, I call to you.
I honor you, good and gracious Perses,
I offer you my praise and seek your blessing.

To Dione

I call to Dione, ancient of name,
grand-daughter of Gaia and star-strewn Ouranos,
mother of blessed Aphrodite,
companion and counsel of thundering Zeus.
O goddess who knows the ways of fate,
mistress of visions and oracles,
friend of the seer and the prophet,
well-honored in temple and in grove,
well-honored at far-famed Dodona,
teller of the hidden tales, I call to you.
I honor you, good and gracious Dione,
I offer you my praise and seek your blessing.