Semele

Beautiful Semele, strong-hearted daughter
of Cadmus and Harmonia, child of Thebes
who bore the shining son of lightning-wielding Zeus,
beloved mother of Dionysos who carried
you from Hades’ dark depths to the shining halls
of Olympos, there to join with the deathless gods
in unending joy. Thyone were you called, O goddess,
by those who received your blessing of madness.
Many were the libations poured out at your shrines,
many the graceful maids who danced in your honor,
many the fragrant flowers strewn at your feet.
Semele of the flowing hair, robed in purple,
wreathed in ivy, through you do maenads find their way
to frenzy, through you do we find our way to bliss.

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