Saturday, 8 February 2014

The Beginning - Greece - Muses - Sappho

Well not really the beginning as that was many years ago, maybe nearly a decade. I used to write a lot of poetry (mainly) and have a lot stored in a big box folder hidden away from being seen. Over the past few years my Muse seems to become distant to recently when they have finally seemed to vanish. People still say I am a poet but what is a poet if they haven't written a poem for ages. So here I am setting off to look for that spark to start my writing again, and if I am looking for my Muse then the best place I guess is Greece. The home of the muses.

In different years there seemed to be varying number of muses, maybe 3, maybe 9, maybe 7, or maybe 4.
There were many myths about the muses. One myth says that the Sirens (bird like monsters who lured ships into rocks) had a competition with the muses. Of course the muses won and used the plucked feather's of the Sirens as crowns.
Another myth mentions the daughters of Pierus competing against the muses... This time the daughters were turned into birds such as the wryneck, hawk, jay, duck and gold finch.

Throughout the ages the Muses had different names but here are the nine in my list:

Calliope -muse of epic poetry
Clio - muse of history
Euterpe - muse of flutes and lyric poetry
Thalia - muse of comedy and pastoral poetry
Melpomene - muse of tragedy
Terpsichore - muse of dance
Erato - muse of love poetry
Polyhymnia - muse of sacred poetry
Urania - muse of astronomy

Is my Muse one of them (presuming that my Muse hadn't been turned into a bird or something?)
Well maybe Euterpe, Thalia, Melpomeme and Erato sound the closest to me. However I am not sure, I don't really feel a connection to them. There is more a connection with Sappho , who Plato states:
"Some say the muses are nine; how careless! Look , there's Sappho too, from Lesbos, the tenth".
The connection I feel of the poetry being lost, fragments of ideas scattered around bits of paper. There the comparison falls as  she is the tenth muse and I am none. People crave to learn about her works (in fact a recent story of two discovered fragments) ... and mine only me. However me is the most important person for my writing, without me there is none. So here I leave my false start as I have found no trace of my Muse of inspiration for my poetry.. however I have rediscovered Sappho and maybe she will help me on the road to my next port of call...

Although we can't always be certain of authenticity.. here is something from Sappho to finish.. or start off with:

"Although only breath, words which I command are immortal"