This is a story for all lovers of Greek mythology - the story of how it all started. Once, way back when the world was ruled by cruel Titans...
1. Amalthea remembers
The eternal noise of this city of concrete and glass keeps me awake at night. I'm longing for the silence of the mountains and the woodlands. Longing for heavens where you can still see the stars, not just the pomegranate-red reflections of the ever-burning city-lights.
But my latest lover likes it here. He snores head down in the pillow, sea-green dreads all over the bed and lithe body sprawled and tangled in the satin sheets, black tribal tattoos on olive skin. He's Hudson, river-god and protector of the great city New York. And I'm Amalthea, woodland-goddess from Crete and as ancient as they come. I use to say 5000, let's leave it there...
I started off humble enough, as a guardian of goats, living in a cave and rejoicing the simple things in life, like fresh feta cheese, ripe oranges, a beautiful sunrise and budding roses. But I was bound for a more important task in life. The task as guardian of the boy-child who was to become the ruling King of Gods.
Yes, Zeus still holds that position even if the world has changed beyond my wildest dreams and we immortals now lead a more low-key life behind the grand stage of the world. Zeus is still the one who runs it all, even if he's doing it through dummies these days, pulling the strings only immortals can spot.
I saw him on TV today as Joe Peters, the president's new National Advisor. His avartar a man in his late 40:ies or early 50:ies, vaguely resembling the actor George Clooney. Posh-looking in Armanis and a Harvard doctorate ring he was giving brilliant answers to mortal reporters at a White House press conference. A perfect disguise, but it was those eyes that gave him away, at least to me. No matter that you can't spot the immortal ultraviolet shine in the pupils through TV, which only operates on the visual levels mortals can see; it's that certain something that reveals Zeus to this lady who has known him since he was but a week old.
Then there has almost always been a Joe Peters or a Zev Donner or someone behind every president or king or emperor in possession of real power. As chancellor, prime minister, secretary general or something. Seldom the apparent man in charge himself, but always there, always the wielder of the real power.
Just as with religion today. This heterogene collection of immortals incarnating every aspect of earth-power, from tiny birds to great nuclear power plants has become too complicated for the mere mortal to grasp. About ten million of gods and goddesses and other beings spread all over the world from the inner planet core and out in the stratosphere, and ranging in importance from a mere street light nymph to Zeus himself; it became too much already back in the ancient times.
So Zeus struck a deal with this go-getter who wasn't content with being "Numero Uno" with his little Kaanaan dessert tribe and promised him power and glory in return for making up a reality the mortals could grasp. And this Jahwe came up with heaven and hell and Adam and Eve and Satan and all that jazz in return for being THE God. All right, his story wasn't water-proof, his lad wanted part of the glory too and there are still talented mortals out there who can spot a god or a goddess upon encountering them in the street. But these are usually let in on the truth, because what harm can it do having one percent knowing it? They would be considered crazy anyhow if they told.
And when my little boy in his latest incarnation smiled back at me though the TV-screen all my memories started to flood back. So what better to do on a sleepless night than filling this new laptop of mine with my story. The story about saving young Zeus from his cruel father and watching him grow up to become what he is today.