The Fairy Tale of Cupid and Psyche
by Virginia Bennett
Aphrodite, Goddess of love,
Looked down from her golden chair,
Plaiting her curls, all vanity-struck,
That there never was one so fair.
But then out of the woods and out on the lea,
Came the loveliest commoner girl,
Such a mortal was this, that her beauty was cast,
In the hearts of all men in the world.
To Eros, son of mischief love,
Came a grieving mother’s plea,
That he should strive to disrepair,
This one more fair than she.
“This Psyche, set her up to fall,
In love with such a man,
Whose countenance is bitter,
And whose form likens to Pan.”
So Cupid, as he’s named, set forth,
Whistling all the while,
But ‘lo before he makes his strike,
His lips twitch to a smile.
You see, he’d happened carelessly,
Upon the mortal girl,
And drawing from his quiver,
‘Tween his fingers he did twirl.
And gasped for the prick did sting his eyes,
Clouding up his sight,
‘Til there never was a love so great,
As Cupid’s was that night.
Poor Psyche could not fathom,
This turn of fate’s desire.
Her beauty was an epic,
That no man could dare inspire.
So woebegone was she that took,
Unto the mountain’s peak,
To find the one true love intent,
Of whom the seer did speak.
T’was then that Cupid spied his love,
And bewitched by arrow’s shroud,
He kidnapped darling Psyche,
To his palace in the clouds.
But Love’s angel bride grew lonely,
And her prince would n’ere reveal,
The truth about his likeness,
Thus the girl began to feel,
That by a beastly monster,
She had been duped and wed,
So formed a plan most secret,
To espy the boy abed.
Eros, love’s own son awoke,
With Psyche standing by,
And brutally offended,
He surrendered to the sky.
Psyche in her heartache,
Is appalled at what she’s done,
To the God of Love with golden curls,
His beauty like the sun.
And so determined is she,
To gain a husband true,
That she carries her plight to Venus,
To beg what can she do?
But angry, jealous Venus,
Plays no fool for one so fair,
And smugly deals the broken girl,
Three tasks beyond compare.
To divide a tower of different grains,
To gain rare, golden fleece,
To travel Hades eerie void,
Where a box of beauty keeps.
Cupid watches Psyche,
The girl in such distress,
In love, takes pity on her,
And helps her pass the test.
But look, what’s here? The final blow,
A box with beauty lures,
And Psyche drawn by vicious tempt,
Infernal sleep endures.
Now Eros, gathering up the sleep,
Rebukes his mother’s antic,
And carts his bride to Zeus’ throne,
To gain a father’s permit.
Great Jupiter would set it right,
With stubborn Aphrodite,
So filled a cup, ambrosia sweet,
Thus ends our tale of star-crossed love,
Their stars now grand aligned,
As Cupid for his Psyche,
Greater love you’ll never find.