Category Archives: Mythology

Days of Honey

France & Vincent

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“When the sun rose once again it was more than a new dawn for the world. A new order, a new era had begun.

And it was time.

We from whom the stars were seeded were sent to earth to walk amongst you. We wore flesh like a garment, clothing our immanence, choosing the limitation of your little lives as our place of working.

The people were nomads, chasing subsistence where the water rose and the animals ran. We could do nothing with them except seek them across the desert. How were we to teach them if they could not stay still? How could they listen if their days were taken by their need for survival? Indeed, we saw such violence and starvation in that arid land that even the gods wept.

It was a problem.

Famine and war had raped the earth and the people were little more than…

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Contexts: the flood…

The Silent Eye

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‘Various stories relating a catastrophic flood are told by classical authors.

These flood stories may derive from a single Mesopotamian original used in travellers tales for over two thousand years along the great Caravan Routes of Western Asia.

In the Epic of Gilgamesh the ‘Flood Story’ is used to mark the time in history after which it was no longer possible for a mortal to win immortality.

The Flood is also important in wider Mesopotamian Tradition as it marks the end of the period when the Seven Sages lived on earth and brought to mankind the arts of civilisation…

The various derivations of the Flood Hero’s name, or epithets, attest to this transition… ‘Extra-Wise’ ‘He Found Life’ ‘The Far-Distant’ ‘The Green One’.’

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… Wen and I are still in the British Museum mulling over one of the information boards.

We don’t normally hold with ‘establishment views’ but this…

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Songs of the Stone: monkish mead…

France & Vincent

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Big-Earth…

Little-Earth…

Bigger-Earth:

Earth-Man-Stars.

*

“Sea-mist,” repeated Kieron, thirteen-hundred years before those words were uttered.

“Dragon’s Breath,” snorted Bark Jaw-Dark into the dancing particles of icy-air which swirled about his head, “And I’ve never know a world be the same once it’s raised.”

“There’s a boat out there,” said Kieron with some surprise and no little concern.

He planted his staff deep in the good earth and rested his weight on it.

“Ring the bell!”

He shouted over his shoulder into the white-soup of gloom behind him before turning to look back out across what could be seen of the sound.

Somewhere far away a bell clanged mournfully, and the slow, rhythmic plash of oar in water grew more and more distinct…

Before the cowled forms in the boat could be properly discerned, a shrill call broke the ponderous air like a banshee’s keen…

“We are come seeking that…

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The Marsh King’s Daughter II…

 

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‘…The Earth will see you on through this time…’

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…There always is.

The Marsh King sinks back beneath the waters with the unnamed Egyptian Princess in his thrall.

Some time later a green shoot with a water-lily bud appears above the slime.

The bud unfurls to reveal a small girl-child.

The child is spotted by a watching Stork and is taken to a barren Viking couple who, quite naturally, are enthralled with the gift and immediately besotted with the child.

Children normally display both the physical and temperamental characteristics of their ancestors, predominantly their parents, and usually in more or less equal measure.

Here, these tendencies are pronounced.

Helga, for this is the name the Viking couple choose for her, is a beautiful girl-child during the day, albeit displaying a strong blood-thirsty streak, whilst as the sun sets she turns into a compassionate, toad-like monster!

Is the name significant?

How important is it that Helga is the only named character in the story?

Could any device be better chosen to make us consider the diurnal polarity of Day and Night and their profound affects upon our consciousness and its natural tendencies?

Cold mountain…

Warm earth…

If we are in any doubt as to what we are to make of these devices we are introduced to the somnambulistic nature of both Denmark and the nether regions of Marsh-Land later in the tale.

To make matters worse, Helga’s apparent beauty beguiles all those who gaze upon her and blinds them to the reality of her brutish day-time nature.

It is only her adoptive Viking mother who witnesses and begins to see and realise the true nature of the problem presented to both her, and by extension us, in the form and expressions displayed via the mysterious Marsh King’s Daughter.

There is more…

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Religious Syncretism: a proper priest…

The Silent Eye

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… “What are you talking about?”

“A question of questions, young Wendolina, the answer to which may serve as a stunning proof of our original assertion.”

Your original assertion, which was posed as a question anyway. And I’m older than you are.”

“Yes, yes, dearest Wendlebury. There was a need for the razor ban, in order, to achieve assimilation. The original model for Samson wasn’t Gilgamesh at all, it was his ‘alter-ego’, the wild-man, Enkidu, who in the words of birds-feet etched into tablets of baked-clay over four thousand years ago, possessed long hair like a woman and an excessively hairy body.”

“In that case the ‘jaw-bone’ may well be a form of boomerang…” muses Wen, and then, “Birds Feet?”

“Cuneiform.”

“If I wasn’t so confused, I’d be tempted to jump up and down,” says Wen.

“Two-thirds animal, one-third man.”

“Ah,” says Wen, the light of comprehension settling…

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Religious Syncretism: iconotropy…

The Silent Eye

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… “Is he meant to be a giant?”

“In the story he is two-thirds divine, one third-man.”

“Which doesn’t actually answer my question.”

“I don’t know, is he meant to be a giant?”

“Ah, I see… Well, if that is a full grown lion, then he is very definitely a giant.”

“The Hebrew story-tellers saw fit to make the lion, a cub.”

“With the express aim of de-gigantisising him I expect.”

“Is that a word?”

“I shouldn’t think so.”

“So why would they downsize him?”

“Because the strength of their hero didn’t come from his size. It came from God.”

“The Spirit of the Lord.”

“The Spirit of the Lord, that’s right.”

“But if Gilgamesh is two-thirds divine, doesn’t his strength come from ‘God’ too?”

“Gilgamesh has a divine mother, Ninsun, and a father who was born human but later became divine.”

“Ninsun, is a name to conjure with,” murmurs…

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Songs of the Stone: beehive hut…

France & Vincent

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Big-Earth…

Little-Earth…

Bigger-Earth:

Earth-Man-Stars.

*

…I followed Kraas’s footfalls as she walked towards the stone.

Just then the moon appeared in the sky overhead and shone its half light directly onto the figure before us.

Out shot a scrawny claw which grasped and held my wrist in its iron grip, “He has silver?” screeched the witch of the wood.

I gasped in pain, slowly unfurling my still tightly clasped fist.

The hessian pouch lay scrunched and soggy in my sweating palm.

The witch snatched it up and emptied out the three, hard won, coins into her left hand…

Stepping to one side she hurled one silver piece in front of her, “For water,” she cried…

And one behind her, “For earth,” she cried…

And the third above, “For air,” she finished.

The coins disappeared from sight into the black night…

“This will do for the fire,” she grimaced, fingering…

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Songs of the Stone…

France & Vincent

HM15 732

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Big-Earth…

Little-Earth…

Bigger-Earth:

Earth-Man-Stars.

*

Dark night, utterly dark.

Probably just as well.

If his friends could see him and knew where he was going…

Not that he knew where he was going himself, just who he was meeting and that was bad enough!

‘An adventure,’ she had said in that enigmatic way of hers and then she had smiled.

‘What kind of adventure?’

‘…To bring something back into the world that was lost.’

It would cost.

Of course it would cost.

Her sort always do one way or another.

He clutched the hessian pouch tighter in his fist.

Silver was not easy to come by in this day and age.

Had to know where to look, and when, and how…

The hoot of an owl.

A dark shape emerged from the line of trees up ahead.

“You got ’em?”

No word of greeting.

“I got ’em.”

That smile.

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Religious Syncretism…

The Silent Eye

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“Then, Samson went down to the vineyards of Timnath and a young lion roared against him.

The Spirit of the Lord came upon him so that, with nothing in his hands, he rent mightily the lion as though it were a young goat.”

Judges 14

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“And then Samson found a jawbone of an ass and he took it and with it he slew heaps upon heaps of men to the number of a thousand.”

– Judges 16

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“You know, I’m not sure syncretism is quite the right word,” says Wen, eyeing the icon of Gilgamesh with some trepidation.

We are in the British Museum doing ‘research’ as Wen likes to call it.

‘Pick up your staff and pen,’ she said, ‘we have work to do.’

Which means in Wen-Speak, among other things, more churches…

“Your doubts are probably well founded. Mr Graves called it ‘iconotropy’ –…

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