here is something that
mother told me
about god complexes:
“everyone believes themselves
to be gods among men:
even that hideous monster from your
half-remembered Hellenistic dreams
will retreat back to
his craggy hideaway and continue
with his hedonistic ways.
the poor creature:
he will don a halo,
iconize himself in caricatures
pretending that if for a moment
his veins flow ichorous that
Icarus may have envied when his wings
beat in tandem with the footfalls of
the sun chariots’ horses.
“the sun shines upon
hallowed ground, though Polyphemus
will avoid Helios’s scornful gaze.
he herds sheep––his only acolytes––
an unabashed king in his realm,
like a god plays war, or as a child
would play house,
veins running gold-blooded.
when moon rises,
he will hang his weary
shadow at his door and retreat
to his fire-pit. perhaps this will be
the closest he will be to the gods,
basking in the heat of Hestia’s
“in the end,” mother said,
“Nobody will end up deified.
Icarus may have rained down wax and
feathers in godlike fury
before tilting his head to Helios once more;
Polyphemus waded into the sea,
eyes clouded in godlike fury
before resigning himself to fate, head bowed.”
the fallacy of mortals, of monsters, of gods