|Femslash February in myths, tales and religion - Part 4
||[Feb. 28th, 2018|09:45 am]
Les divagations de Nelja
And the month is finished!
Hind Al-Human and Al-Zarqa (22/28)
Hind Bint Al Numan’s and Al-Zarqa’s love was described in many medieval arab poems. Hind Al-Numan did write poetry. Al-Zarqa was known to reply to improvised philosophical questions, all in verse.
Hind Bint Al Numan was a christian princess. Chosroes, the persian king, wanted to marry her, but she didn’t want to. Her father too disagreed to the marriage, because Chosroes was already married, nd he had a bad moral reputation. He refused, and Chosroes attacked him, and killed him, and took his throne for one of his friends. But Hind’s father had already sent his daughter in Arabia, where she would be safe.
I dont know whether Hind met Al-Zarqa in Arabia of she knew her before. But they lived together, and their love is said to have been greater than husband and wife. When Al-Zarqa died, al-Nu’man went into deep mourning, leading an ascetic life and founding a monastery in al-Zarqa’s name. She was buried at the gate after she died herself.
Artemis and her servants (23/28)
Artemis, the Greek virgin goddess of the hunt, among other things, runs away from romance and the company of men. She dwells in the woods with an entourage of nymphs.
As often, the nature of their relationship is debatable. For example, one of these nymphs was named Callisto. Zeus seduced her by taking Artemis’ appearance, so we can sure say that some of the nymphs had crushes on her at least (even if Artemis herself makes a lot of sense as aro and/or ace). When Artemis knew she was pregnant, she was so angry she dismissed her at once, on some versions changed her into a bear to hunt. Was it because she dared to think she had slept with her, or because she (unwittingly) cheated on her?
Artemis also, sometimes, took interest on a human woman. Philonoe was a sister of Clytemnestra, and we know almost nothing about her, except that Artemis made her immortal. She probably joined her nymphs.
Also, she once asked Agamemnon to sacrifice his owm daughter Iphigenia to her. In some versions Iphigenia died, but in others, Artemis took her and made her one of her great priestess. Sometimes she even made her a goddess too.
Berenice and Mesopotamia (24/28)
They are actually from a 2th century novel, Babyloniaca by Iamblichus. But there could be previous legends, and lost books are pretty much legends anyway. :-) They were not the main characters and we only have a summary by Photius.
a digression about Berenice, the daughter of the king of Egypt, and her wild and inordinate passions, and how she slept with Mesopotamia, who was afterward taken by Saka and led away to Garmos with her brother Euphrates… but [Berenice’s servant] Zobaras, having drunk from the spring of love and seized with passion for Mesopotamia, rescued her and returned her to Berenice, from whom she had been taken, and who had become the queen of Egypt after her father’s death. Berenice married Mesopotamia, and there was war between Garmos and Berenice on her account.
Is “wild and inordinate” Photius opinion, or was lesbianism presented in a negative light in the book too? We’ll probably never know. Maybe we’re missing on the big lesbian classic book, ha ha.
The Goblin Market (25/28)
The Goblin Market is a poem by Christina Rossetti. Maybe it was inspired from a specific fairy tale. It sure is sometimes told as a fairy tale. It’s one of the main iterations of the trope about fairy food: once you’ve tasted it, you will never eat anything else.
Two sisters, Laura and Lizzie, live together. Laura foolishly eats goblin fruit, and starts to wither, because she no longer eats, only wanting more goblin fruit. So Lizzie goes to the goblins too. The goblins want her to eat, but she won’t open her mouth, even when they crush the fruit against her face. Then she comes back home and lets Laura lick the goblin fruit off her face. Not only she eats, but she’s cured, and starts eating normal food again.
If it’s on the list, it’s because the scene where Laura licks Lizzie’s face and body is so very much homoerotic.
Did you miss me?
Come and kiss me.
Never mind my bruises,
Hug me, kiss me, suck my juices
Squeez’d from goblin fruits for you,
Goblin pulp and goblin dew.
Eat me, drink me, love me;
Laura, make much of me;
La Sirène and La Baleine (26/28)
Vodou traditions vary on the relationships of these two lwas. They’re married to Agwe, lwa of the sea, that’s sure. Sometimes they’re the same person. Sometimes La Baleine is La Sirène’s mother. And sometimes they’re part of a poly triad with Agwe, and involved with each other.
La Sirène is a lwa of love and beauty, and, of course, the sea. La Baleine is more about fertility, maternal compassion, receptivity, and the mystery of the depths.
The Dancing Girl in Exile (27/28)
La danseuse exilée (The Dancing Girl in Exile) is a literary fairy tale by Renée Vivien, in the anthology Netsuke. They are sometimes adaptations of Japanese or Chinese legends, and sometimes original wonder tales set in Japan or China. I was a little disappointed to see than only five tales out of thirty-six were femslash (since Renée Vivien was a lesbian and doesn’t hide it in her poetry). But you’ll still have one of these!
There is a dancer who loves and worship her empress, and the empress takes her as a confidante. As she dance, she can’t resist and touches her. But it’s still a lese-majesty crime, and she’s exiled in a far away mountain. The empress, just before she leaves, gives her a secret against sadness, a word of the gods. And when the dancer misses her empress, not only she says it, but she writes it, and it’s the origin of all poetry.
When they die, they go in different heavens, since they’re of different classes and glories, but once a year, they can meet each other in a bridge made of swallows.
It takes imagery from a few different legends, but it’s poetic and I still love it very much.
Children of the Earth (28/28)
In Plato’s Symposium, lots of guests have a conversation about love. Aristophanes tells a myth about the origin of love: once humans had two heads, four arms, four legs. But they were becoming too powerful, and Zeus cut them in half. Since then they’ve been sad and searching for their other half.
Some humans of the time were formed of two men, they were associated to the sun, and are the origin of gay men. Some of them were one man and one woman, Plato’s “androgyne” humans, are associated to the moon, and became straight people. And the ones with two woman were linked to the earth, and became lesbians.
Cette entrée a été crosspostée au https://flo-nelja.dreamwidth.org/615782.html. Commentez où vous voulez.