[In which Aphrodite ponders monogamy, 21st century style]
She’d come far since that whole Botticelli scandal,
astride a shell, hair tumbled about her ******,
sensuality and a taste for illicit thrill (a real wild myth)
but now the candid canvas only required a google by the Book Club’s prying judgment,
she’d since traded Olympus for a semi-detached.
All his shirts were folded, perfectly pressed,
ham and chips congealing by the microwave
and he should have been back before Hollyoaks.
They met in their local, he bought her a pint and mused
over Milton of all people, his degree finally put to use,
justifying the ways of God to men.
Impressed and tipsy his back was soon against the wall, no tricks needed.
He kissed all over her divinity,
admired the quote encircling her ankle, from a trip round Asia
to find herself, at age nine thousand and nineteen.
As they made love a spell fell on her for once in a millennia
Married in months, too young, well he was,
and her face had always been twenty-two.
Then came the mortgage, the Labrador, the kids, the affairs.
At the bottom of a wine glass she pondered on the irony
after all what was the point of an eternity weaving passion into the world
with your husband’s ‘lunch meetings’ equating to rolls on Travelodge sheets?
Not her style at all, too tacky.
She could work her charms, make everything rose-tinted,
but the bitterness intoxicated.
On the sofa, her side, she dwelled again on Botticelli,
spilling her beauty on a page,
passion and dexterity, a lost breed- this century was so unpromising.
Aphrodite thought on her conquests- Ares, Poseidon, Adonis
gods between her thighs, making her mountains move,
oceans boiling madly, bruised skies crackling with fire,
hands caressing skin and creating worlds, and…
…and on her mortal, a balding, a boring, a bland
Off came the clothes, the wedding ring and the phone from its hook.
Imagine the pizza boy’s confusion as the door opened to the sound of the heavens singing
rays of ethereal light warming his pubescent, pock-scarred face.
A naked, pearly goddess,
and those golden, flaxen locks snaking, seducing, ensnaring as he staggered into the rosy blur.
It was impossible, after all, to justify the ways of gods to men.
But how clichéd.