Modern Hymns and Poetry for Melinoe

Communal Hymn of the Old Thiasos

I pray to Melinoe
She of the double nature
The light in the darkness and the dark in the light
I pray to Melinoe of the Starry Bull
I offer praises to Melinoe
born of savage power.
I offer praises to the Goddess
of the soul’s inarticulate cry.
honey appeased, serpent wielding Power
May I ever reverence You well,
Who carries us through from frenzy
to the sweetness of a balanced mind.
Cracked mirror, burnt branch,
Split with rage and howling grief,
You name the trauma that hides, unnamed
Yours is the hand on the shuddering shoulder
Yours is the line in the sand
Yours is the anguish
And the release therefrom
In outrage, you unfurl
In madness, you bear witness
The pain is yours
You hold it for those who cannot
You are the torch for those lost in the darkness
And the dark shadow that follows the corrupt through the light
I pray to you, Melinoe
I praise and honor you

For Melinoe
by Galina Krasskova

I offer this prayer to Melinoe,
Daughter of Persephone,
born of savage power.

Goddess of initiations,
called ‘Dark Mind,”
Succor and Sustenance
of the suffering,
Keeper of memory
Who guides us through
the feral frenzy
of our own souls,
I beg Your protection.

Help my soul in its journey
to the truth of its being.

Goddess of invocations,
of the soul’s cry for mercy,
You are called Sweet mind,
honey appeased,
fruit bearing Power.
May I ever reverence You well.

Serpent handling Muse,
Guardian of the dead,
ever called She Who Changes,
No magic is beyond Your power,
may I ever know the grace
of praising You well.

Hail, Melinoe!

For Melinoë
by M. A. Rivera

Mad maiden Melinoë
Ghostly goddess of the shimmering face
When we look at you what will see?
The beauty of Persephone in her maidenhood
The sadness of her separation and freedom
The anger of the Hidden One your sire
Or will we see you, gentle and terrible one
Behind the faces that dance upon your frame?
Milky obsidian goddess who dances in the night
Who stalks and waits in the shadows
With your troupe of dank and deadly spirits
Hear the praises of your name and let loose your rage
Let it devour our own as we approach you
Beyond the dire wailing that sends mortals fleeing
Shrieking and shrinking away from your mighty visage

Hail to you Melinoë
by Sannion

Maiden with dark and light eyes,
mistress of many shapes and many wiles
– you were born from grief
and so know how to guide souls
through the winding maze of pain and madness.
You care for those whom others forget,
those who perished before their time or unjustly,
who were too poor or too unloved
to have the proper burial rites performed,
those whose rage and hunger were stronger than dirt
– these you call to you by name,
though all the world soon forgets they once even existed.
Through nightmare landscapes you lead them, ravening and deranged
until some pious soul sets out a feast,
burns candles and prays soothing words
for the restless dead of Melinoë.

Hymn to Melinoe
by Rebecca Buchanan

she is the pale fruit
of midnight,
sweet juice banishing

Hymn to Melinoe
by Renee Garner

Black and White speak,
speak with one Voice,
Voice is conceived,
conceived in agony.
Agony brings growth,
growth from memory,
memory beneath,
beneath vitality.
Vitality slaughtered,
slaughtered are Gathered,
Gathered dissolved,
dissolved into Nightmare.
Nightmare is woven,
woven from darkness,
darkness now glowing,
glowing with madness.
Madness is altering.
Altering conception,
conception impaired,
impaired gaining function.

Hymn to Melinoe II
by Rebecca Buchanan

daughter of the red-lipped queen:
only your sweet fruit
calms the mad fury
of your sisters

Hymn to Melinoe III
by Rebecca Buchanan

a pale-faced woman
rides the back roads of midnight
the headlights of her motorcycle
sizzling and sparking
with infernal light

she wears saffron-bright silk and leather
she smells of coal dust and sulfur
she carries a silver flask in each pocket

if you should meet her
at a bar or crossroads or interstate rest stop
surrounded by tired long-haul truckers and screaming toddlers
and if
with a smile
she should offer you a sip
from one of her flasks
take care which one you choose
for one is the wine of sweet dreams
and the other
the bitter draught of nightmares

Hymn to Melinoe IV
by Rebecca Buchanan

live on the bottom of a lake
just south of the fields of asphodel

is the only one
who will visit them

she sits on the bank
of that still mercury-colored pool,
tossing in bits of pomegranate
and sometimes mint and saffron seeds
and she watches the waters dip
and burble
for just a moment
as the nightmares fight over the treats

she giggles
sticks her toes in the freezing waters
and whispers to the nightmares
of the treats that await them
in the minds of sleeping mortals

Hymn to Melinoe V
by Rebecca Buchanan

daughter of the dread queen:
lips red as the pomegranate
skin pale as the moon
hair dark as erebos:
in her hand
the sweet fruit of oblivion:
trailing in her wake
the seven nightmares
to drive men mad

Melinoe’s Doll
by Richard Norris

You hid in the shadows
Between shattered columns
Under a Lethean waterfall
A whispered panic
A hushed mania
The forgetful dead
Murmured at the sight
Of Your shifting, bleeding flesh
Disquiet come to Hades
Unease in its rulers
Then in a secret grotto
Came a quiet stranger
An odd Doll in His hands
You shuddered then
Seeing awful fruit
Of the terrible union
That left You sundered
Unable to unsee
The scaled, gaping maw
And the splitting lightning

He approached without steps
Subtle as ivy
And sat beside You
“I want to know.
For I am no stranger… to wounds.”
Then under the white robes
Came scarlet blooms
Over hooded eyes
Poured a mask of blood
Then fading as He said, “Sister.”

Your own torrent poured then
Gushing forth from gashed mouth
Running up to seashell ears
And dripping within
He shifted as You spoke
Cutting strings from the doll
As His skin mimicked Your own
As Your tale became a trickle
And stopped with a final sob
He nodded and turned the Doll

“Her name was Pain
And her strings weren’t for her
But now they are cut
And she is free to be someone new.
I have come to give you this
That You might rename her
And learn all she can do
And show her what she can become
Now that cruel control is gone
And she has become herself.”

Wordless gratitude glittered
In tears unshed
Then a caress of the Doll
As You gave voice
“Joy, Becoming, she will be,
Giving grace to the lost,
Memory to the forgotten,
And voice to the victim,
Through dusty ruins
And fields of asphodel alike.”

Prayer to Melinoe I
by Rebecca Buchanan

terrible one:
who must be propitiated
with offerings of mint
and pomegranate:
keep your nightmares
and terrors
at bay:
grant me peaceful dreams
and restful sleep

Prayer to Melinoe II
by Rebecca Buchanan

terrible one:
grant me
honeyed dreams