Lower Modern Myth Winner 2013

Posted on April 22, 2013 by


Modern Myth     Hannah Marier     Marist School    Free 10-beat line


            Near Aulis where Menelaus set sail

            To take back Helen from Trojan Paris,

            Fair dawn arose as if for the first time

            To catch a glimpse of the sorrow that bred

            At the coast of the great Aegean Sea,

            While Zeus mustered pale clouds across the sky,

            For grief clung to his heart at the sad sight

            Of the black raven crying his despair

            Over the unmoving breast of his love.

            Once, he was Corax, a prince of the north

            Till driven by adventure further south

            He took ships weighed down by the shining gold

            Of his high palace in his home’s own soil

            And across the ocean he broke the waves,

            Till upon a sandy shore his eyes saw

            Drepomene of the lovely tresses,

            The fairest maiden he had ever seen,

            Picking sweet blossoms to adorn her hair

            And speaking to her many handmaidens

            That gladly stood awaiting her nearby.

            Then, ordering his men to harbor there

            He ran to the king, avarice his vice,

            To beg the hand of the lovely princess.

            The king, catching sight of the mounds of gold

            That caused the ships to float low in the sea,

            Did readily consent to his daughter’s

            Marriage, and she, on seeing the young prince

            Soon fell into the deepest passion too.

            With much celebration, preparations

            Were swiftly made for a happy union.

            But jealous Hera, thinking that Zeus had seen

            That fair maiden and had taken to her,

            Hera, moved only by her suspicion,

            Dealt to the bride and groom a deadly fate,

            A dreadful end in deep grief and ruin.

            So taking up the guise of an elder

            Respected for her knowledge and old years,

            Hera came upon the sweet couple

            At the end of the grand wedding banquet.

            Leaning on a cane, bent and hobbling,

            She approached the bride and into her cup

            Of gold she slipped lethal poison, a brew

            She knew would cause a sudden death when first

            The maid did sip it with her rosy lips.

            Congratulating the still merry pair,

            She moved on, all men parting in respect.

            Later that night, a servant girl saw the

            Northern prince, his complexion handsomer

            Than any other that she had ever

            Seen before, and desire took hold of her.

            So off to the side she pulled fair Corax

            Trying to seduce him away from his bride.

            But he refused her frankly, then returned

            To his one and only, Drepomene,

And through the night they feasted together.

            But when from the golden cup the maid drank,

            An evil smile cracked across Hera’s lips.

            The prince, seeing his lover falling down,

            Grabbed her, his one true love, as her spirit

            Floated away in tears, led by Hermes

            Who was to take her to Charon’s ferry,

            Which would bear her across the River Styx.

            Corax, the northern prince, took his sword,

            And putting its keen point to his split heart

            His voice cried out in fatal sadness.

            Words cannot describe his sharp, horrid shriek.

            Zeus, taking pity on his broken heart,

            Transformed the man into a black RAVEN,

            So that his feathers might always display

            The mourning that still clawed at his torn heart

            And his descendants might always stay true

            To their lovers so long as life might last.

            And his harsh call serves as a reminder

            Of the false assumption of jealous Hera.



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