Eros and Zeus
EROS. But, Zeus, even if Ive done something wrong, youve got to forgive
me. Im still just a thoughtless little boy.
Zeus. Little boy? You? You're older than Father Time! Youve spent a
lifetime making trouble but, just because you dont have gray hairs and a beard, youve got the idea that everyone should treat
you like an infant.
EROS. Well, what's the old man done to you that is so terrible its
making you talk about locking me up?
ZEUS. Damn you, do you think its nothing to play around with me the
way you do? There isnt a thing you haven't made me turn intosatyr, bull, gold, swan, eagle.
What's more, youve never made any girls fall in love with me, and I dont recall one single time that youve made
me attractive to women. No, Ive always got to use magic on them and hide my looks. It's the bull or the swan they make
love to; if they catch sight of me theyre scared to death.
EROS. Of course, they are only mortal. They set eyes on Zeus? Impossible!
ZEUS. Then how is it Branchus1 and Hyacinth can make love
EROS. Yes, but Daphne2 ran away from him. That fancy hair-do
and boyish look didn't do him much good with her. Zeus, if you want women to fall in love with you, stop waving your shield
around and put down that thunderbolt. Spruce yourself up a bit. Let your hair grow. Have it curled, and wear a headband. Get
yourself some purple robes and gold-embroidered shoes. Get a flutist and drummer and step along to the music. You'll
see. Youll have more girls running after you than Dionysus has Maenads.3
ZEUS. Oh no. Im not interested in having women fall in love with me
if I have to do things like that.
EROS. Then forget about having love affairs. Matter of fact, thats
the easier thing to do.
ZEUS. No. I like having love affairs. I just want to have them with
less fuss. If you promise me this, Ill let you go.
good-looking young boys with whom Apollo had had love a It airs.
2 The lady who fled the amorous Apollo and prayed to be saved. She was turned into an olive tree, which thereafter was the sacred tree of Apollo. The scene of the chase with her metamorphosing into an olive tree has been repeated
depicted in art.
3 The fanatical
female devotees of Dionysus.