To Athena

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I sing to Grey-Eyed Athena
Mighty in Battle
Protector of Cities

Muses lend power to my song,
As I tell of the terror of kings
The triumph of Wisdom
And of the Fates who spin just decrees

The Oracle was given,
Pure and true: A child of the Goddess, Metis
The Goddess of Wisdom, Craft and Skill
Would tear asunder the power of Kings
And the God of Kings
When he unthinkingly wed her
Feared the child of their union
“If it is a son,” thought he, “I shall be overthrown
As Fate has decreed.”
Thus he swallowed Metis whole
Thinking that he had overcome the Moirai
But Zeus, in his might
Cannot overcome Fate’s Eye
Nor unweave what has been woven

Metis slowly crawled
Stealthily, slowly,
To the head of Zeus
There, she sat
There, she waited
Within her womb, male
Within her womb, female
Crafting brooches
Weaving cloth
For her daughter
Crafting armor
Making spear
For her son
There she gave birth
A child complete and perfect
Male and Female
Destined to be wed only to themself
And answer unto none

Athena took up cloth and brooches
Athena took up armor and spear
Athena took up the spirit of Metis

Dancing the dance of battle
Fast-footed and fierce
Pounding on the skull of their father
The axe swing liberated them
Athena sprang forth, dark and lovely
Frenetic and Brilliant
Indomitable in Wisdom
Of unconquerable stratagems

Gods saw a desirable daughter of Zeus
But could not come near to touch
None dared to carry Athena off

Thus, Athena, are you
Ever until this day, Parthenos
Even until this day, the voice of democracy
Monarchs may sit on high thrones
But in all our lands, the duly elected rule

Hail Athena in Triumph
Hail Athena in the heat of battle
Hail Athena in fiery discourse
Hail Athena of many nations

Rise up, O Athena, exalted over Kings
Rise up, exalted over Emperors
Be near to us, Athena
That the voice of the people should ever be heard
And wise counsel ever guide our power


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