Menelaus

for ten years now I have fought in this bloody war
to get your wife back from Paris shopping
at Hermes on the Champs Elysee
it’s all the fault of Aphrodite
in her silken nightie that
we are fighting here
so far from home
the gods make
fools of us all
again and
again
indifferent
to our pain
why do we owe
them anything and
Aeneas will go on to
found Rome after the fall of Troy
while I will be lost at sea for another ten
and watch my men seduced by sirens, turned
into pigs and Clytemnestra taking on a lover, the two
to murder me and my death avenged by my son and daughter
I think I prefer Homer’s version with Penelope ever faithful fending
off endless suitors until my return but time has muddied the truth so
long ago although our legend lives on immortalizing us as surely as stars
have immortalized Andromeda saved from the dragon Cetus by Perseus who
became king of Mycenae thanks to Athena, if only Paris had voted for Athena
none of this would have happened; no good comes from these beauty
pageants this bonfire of the vanities; unresolved for eternity is our
human nature in quest of power from the gods destroys us

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