Higher Love…

 

  “Dionysos was enraptured to hear this lament. He noticed Kekropia, and knew the name of Theseus and the deceitful voyage from Krete. Before the girl He appeared in his radiant godhead; Eros moved swiftly about, and with stinging cestus He whipt the maiden into a nobler love, that He might lead Minos’ daughter to join willingly with his brother Dionysos. Then Bakkhos comforted Ariadne, lovelorn and lamenting, with these words in his mindcharming voice: ‘Maiden, why do you sorrow for the deceitful man of Athens? Let pass the memory of Theseus; you have Dionysos for your lover, a husband incorruptible for the husband of a day! If you are pleased with the mortal body of a youthful yearsmate, Theseus can never challenge Dionysos in manhood or comeliness. But you will say [he slew the Minotaur] . . . Not for nothing did that fleet [of Theseus] sail from my Naxos, but Pothos preserved you for a nobler bridal. Happy girl, that you leave the poor bed of Theseus to look on the couch of Dionysos the desirable! What could you pray for higher than that? You have both heaven for your home and Kronion for your godfather . . . for you I will make a starry crown [the constellation Corona], that you may be called the shining bedfellow of crownloving Dionysos.”

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 47. 265

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