Bibliomancy with Kit: Hero & Leander (6.46-47)
Hello, my dears! In today’s edition of Bibliomancy with Kit, we’re looking at the following two verses from Hero & Leander:
To snake-foot Boreas next she did remove,
and found him tossing of his ravished love.
Ok, here’s what’s going on here. Leander is proving his love for Hero by being a supreme hero (read: idiot) by attempting to swim one of the most dangerous stretches of water in the world, the Hellespont. It’s where two continents meet, so all kinds of whirling and swirling of energies both physical and metaphorical are going on, and poor Hero has begged the winds to be quiet while Leander swims. In her support, Venus’s whitest swan, Leucote, is flying around asking all the winds to still themselves and not whip up the waves as Leander swims: in these two lines, Leucote goes to snake-foot Boreas (the north wind) and “found him tossing of his ravished love” to stay warm (because he’s the north wind so of course he’s cold, poor thing).
Have you ever asked the elements of nature to help you out? I know in our modern world people don’t do that sort of thing, but actually I did on Saturday. I had received a parking ticket for an illegal park job in the afternoon (it was my own stupid fault, so my bad), and as I was looking at the thing, the wind blew it out of my hand. Now, I’m a rather large physical person and definitely not an athlete, and I just don’t go running around chasing slips of paper through downtown San Francisco’s swirling foggy afternoon winds. But I had to catch the paper because it was a ticket and I didn’t know how I would handle resolving the parking violation without retrieving it. So I prayed to the Orisa of the wind, Oya. Oya and I know each other a little bit, and I asked her to please blow the paper back to me. As I prayed, I kept my eyes on the paper (and the traffic) and walked as fast and with as much determination as I could toward the ticket as it danced around. Sure enough, it slowed down a bit and rolled up onto a sidewalk and out of traffic, and I was able to catch it after less than half a block. Ib’ase Oya!!
So what will you do to ask the natural world for help when you need it? You are a part of a larger system, and as it works, so do you. Make friends with the rocks and trees, and tell the wind I say hello.
“The Parting of Hero & Leander” 1837