by Vaughn Neeld
her breasts like ripe pomegranates,
hips fair round as luscious fruit,
eyes hooded by sleepy innocence.
Oh, Zeus, look not on Leda.
She isn't yours to see.
But Zeus, that scheming tyrant, lusting for Leda,
flew down on soft swan's wings
to seduce the faithful, fair-faced Leda,
and Zeus, the rampant,
slid between her marbled legs
to beg her virtuous caresses.
Oh, Leda, what did you feel
when that unnatural daggered tip
stabbed where it did not belong?
Did you cry in alarm?
Or, within that feathered embrace,
did you sigh in ecstasy?
Leda, did you not realize that no mere swan
could press so deep within?
Did you regret the flush you felt
as Zeus filled you with sacred seed?
Did you, like Eve, who returned to Adam
to efface her tainted shame
after fainting with bliss within
the snake's frenzied embrace,
return to bed with Tyndareus
to be refilled with familiar seed
so as to conceal your wanton deed?
As always, the woman must pay the price
in the birthing bed's pain,
and Leda moaned in travail to expel
the eggs in which lay Castor and Pollux,
Clytemnestra and the lovely Helen,
never knowing just whose seed
caused such agony.
While Zeus, that naughty boy,
returned to Hera with a satisfied grin,
to play the innocent, as do all such men.