Rescuing Cassandra

Hear the story of Cassandra: She longed to serve the goddess Athena, to give herself to wisdom and law, to craft and mathematics, to courage and strategy and skill. Athena offered her a life filled with the tools and the skills of her own empowerment, her own scholarship. In Athena’s worship, she could follow the trails of her own curiosity and speak the truths she encountered.
Enter Apollo. As patriarchs so often are, he grew jealous of the woman’s devotion to the women’s ways, fearful of truths spoken that issued from sources not under his control. He offered Cassandra music and poetry, promised her the gift of prophecy if only she would serve him instead, a beautiful bird in his golden cage, there to do his bidding and sing his songs instead of her own. Safe. But the safety he promised was his, for her inner knowing, her self-assurance threatened the ego that wanted control of everything. The wisdom of women was mysterious to him, and the mystery disconcerted him and terrified.
So he cursed her. Although she refused him, still he gave her the gift of prophecy he had offered, and she would always speak true. Her voice would ring out in the marketplace, telling the story of what was to be. But the curse was this: her voice would not be heeded. As happens in the belly of any patriarchy, the woman’s voice was ignored and discounted. Old wives’ tales! they scoffed. Cassandra is making things up, looking for attention. Pay her no mind.
And the fire she saw and spoke of engulfed the city. The mercenaries and looters and kidnappers swarmed the streets as she had foreseen. They broke the ten-year siege, and overthrew the city. Cassandra herself became a pawn of the men in their men’s war, a tool of their scheming.
Heed Cassandra, Friends. Listen to her words. Perhaps we can yet rescue her from Apollo’s clutches.

Gratitude List:
1. The Cassandras who will not be silenced, who speak even when threatened, even when they are ignored.
2. Circles of beloveds.
3. Speaking it out loud. Telling the story that itches to get out.
4. The magic of wind and water, fire and air. Everywhere we look, there is magic.
5. Lights at the ends of tunnels.

May we speak our Truth.


The app I have always loved to use for playing with art filters–Dreamscope–has become unreliable and slow. I’m trying some new ones. This one, Picas, has some promise.

Today’s Prompt: Write a warning poem.


She’s back in my dreams again,
the ignored priestess,
rejected oracle,
cursed Cassandra,
always prophesying,
never understood,
running through the flaming streets,
crying, Doom! and Fire!

People turn and nod,
smile and wave,
blink and shake their heads,
and return to their buying and selling,
to their marketplaces,
to their temples,
to their businesses,
while their city burns around them.

And her name is Tess, and her name is Bree,
and her name is Emma, and her name is Delany,
and her name is Tarana, and her name is Malala,
and her name is Rachel, and her name is Alicia,
and her name is Patrisse, and her name is Opal,
and her name is Tomorrow.

And we close our ears at our peril.

Gratitude List:
1. Good news from the doctor today for one of my Beloveds.
2. How my inner air has cleared since third quarter grades are finished. The burden of constant inadequacy is slightly lighter. (That sounds more like a complaint, perhaps, than a gratitude, but it is a heavy burden to carry, and any lightening of the load is a true blessing for a while.)
3. New ideas
4. Revisions and re-Visions
5. The color pink. Sometimes I need bright, bright pink, and sometimes people wear it on a day when I need it.

Hold your Beloved ones close.