Cirrus uncinus subform of cirrus clouds, Wikepedia photo. For this poem, Iokaste and her sisters.
Cirrus uncinus subform of cirrus clouds, Wikepedia photo. For this poem, Iokaste and her sisters.

When pantheon of gods abandoned Grecian
Mountaintops and temple columns fell, my
Consciousness was cast to ethereal heights.
By welling lustral fonts my priestess sisters
And I were reshaped, windswept above
Ægean Seas, cirrus clouds, ivy wisps, lost
To time and thought, across transparent
Blue atmosphere we streamed.

Why were we so transformed? Had we failed
The gods, neglected our duties to the faithful?
Had deities become too human, fate-twisted
With worldly throngs, bestowing blessing and
Curses, impassioned delights of flesh, rearing
Semi-mortal progeny? Realizing these failed
Truths, empery powers intervened, protean
Forces aroused, celestial trumpets sounded.

For countless decades we slept, rise and fall
Of Mediterranean antiquity, sandstone statues
Dust turned, earth-scarring ice sheets advan-
Cing, receding in slumberous moments, until
Voices beyond Gaia and Arche resurrected my
Us before we were too cloud-thin to respond,
Calling me by name, “Iokaste, Lilac Sea Cloud
Priestess, awaken.”

Temple of Poseidon, Cape Sounion, Greece, Wikipedia photo, 2009.
Temple of Poseidon, Cape Sounion, Greece, Wikipedia photo, 2009.

In thunderous revelation, Poseidon’s majestic
Sounion temple lay in ruins, holy Cape of Col-
Umns reduced to crumbling stones, fluted marble
Pillars weather-worn, paint ablated like bleached
Bones. Our Sea Lord in absentia, simple rope
Fence guarded its perimeter, no worshipers or
Priests, only wanderers from foreign lands, none
Taking to their knees in reverence, none wiping
tears of sorrowed grief away.

Why had I been so resurrected to find cradle of
Democracy, city-states unraveled in disarray?
Pushing ropes aside, I ran onto remnants where
Adyton peristasis once stood, these protective
Columns their footings smashed. “Why have
They forsaken you my Sea Lord?” I cried. Upon
Asking, I was bathed in shimmering light, the
Temple restored within its glazéd beams.

“You were resurrected,” melodic voices spoke
Within my mind, “to bring honesty and virtue
To the world, few mortals at a time, as semi-
Divine oceanids, pleiads, or oracles as needed,
Returned to ancient times amidst happiness
And love.” My response, “When I became
Neptune’s priestess, accompanied by family
At this temple where we stand.”

Before thoughts settled, I bowed at Poseidon’s
Feet, my family amongst peristyles with votive
Offerings for Sea Lord’s blesséd might. As ocean
Breezes graced temple cliffs, skies transformed
From pastels blue, lavender, and rose. This
Lifetime I am an oracle of Poseidon, offering
Divine guidance to those in greatest need,
Honesty and virtue as ancient gods decreed.

Whilst on the ocean, I observed cirrus clouds much like those depicted,
And they spoke to me, a cirrus form of Pleiades or Seven Sisters.  

Related poem: “Iokaste, Lilac Sea Clouds”

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