The Bull Dancer

For Creativity Challenge: Day 3 word is Acceptance
http://1sojournal.wordpress.com

bull-dancer

The Bull Dancer

Sit crossed-legged to morning,
unraveling words like Ariadne’s thread,
following them through labyrinth
seeking jewel like poem,
hidden treasure I know
must be somewhere near center.

Instead, find Minotaur,
enraged in his cage,
angered by his own ugliness.

Head lowered, red eyes glowing,
smoke trailing from his nostrils
as he charges me and my meager
weapons of paper and pen.

Leap over his back,
writing furiously until he turns,
and I can show him how, even he
might be made beautiful.

Elizabeth Crawford 11/23/2016

Notes: This is a very old poem that never saw daylight. As a beginning student of History, I was fascinated by the beautiful tiles of the Bull Dancers of the ancient Minoan culture of Crete. It was a sacred ritual and is still practiced (in modern form) in the South of France. I was already familiar with the Greek myth of Theseus, Ariadne, and the Minotaur in the Labyrinth.   Later, when I began writing poetry, I sort of fused that altogether in this poem. Today’s Challenge is the word acceptance. And acceptance, like love, must begin at home. We all have a dark side, or shadow aspect in our personality. I believe that creative endeavors often lead us toward understanding those shadow aspects and accepting them. The poem was one of my earliest attempts to convey that reality.

Save

Save

Save

Advertisements

About 1sojournal

Loves words and language. Dances on paper to her own inner music. Loves to share and keeps several blogs to facilitate that. They can be found here: http://1sojournal.wordpress.com/ https://soulsmusic.wordpress.com/ http://claudetteellinger.wordpress.com/
This entry was posted in The Bull Dancer and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to The Bull Dancer

  1. Brava! I loved revisiting the poem after reading your notes. The Buddhist calls the process of accepting and loving yourself maitri. Pema Chodron says “Maitri is about beginning to make friends with oneself.” I agree with a feeling in your poem, that sometimes that process includes embracing our monsters. Thank you for this piece. I’m glad I popped over to read it prior to starting my own.

    The ending of your poem is perfect. Yes, let’s polish our monsters beautiful!

    Like

  2. Sherry Marr says:

    To “show him how even he may be made beautiful.” A tall order for some monsters. But I do love this concept, and your imagery is so clear, I can see his little red eyes. Oh, wait, that was the tv news. LOL.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Susan says:

    I identify with expecting beauty and finding a monster. This poem shows a beautiful way, beauty as it can be.

    Like

  4. Pingback: and so I sit | undercaws

  5. thotpurge says:

    I read it as a struggle to find words and then after your explanation read it again and the struggle to find oneself was revealed… we are our poems, aren’t we!!! Wonderful!!!!

    Yes, we are, and that means, more than ever, that we must seek out the darkness within, and bring it into the light of forgiveness and love. Our poems would only get stronger, if we do. Thanks for finding the ‘real’ message,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  6. oldegg says:

    Sadly we have standards of beauty and ugliness which may totally out of character with a persons or creatures true self. I have found beauty in many things other facial attractiveness or a fine physique.

    Sorry, OE, this isn’t about physical attractiveness or beauty.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  7. ah the raging bull within us – very creative use of the Minotaur for acceptance – we must not pen it in a maze but ride it to weariness. I liked the meditative beginning that revealed it all from the start

    Yes, meditation should lead us to accepting that which we ourselves have penned up and attempted to suppress. And the key to acceptance is forgiveness,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  8. Jae Rose says:

    I think you paint the Minotaur generously and beautifully.. sometimes it’s not always pretty things we find as we work our way through the maze of life

    Thank you Jae, and you are so right. We would like to see ourselves as the most enlightened of creatures, but when we honestly explore that inner landscape we often find pockets of pettiness that must be acknowledged, then accepted, if we are to ever grow into what we only think we can be.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  9. Sumana Roy says:

    I like this magic of creation when such raw power is gradually made beautiful.

    Thank you Sumana. I like to think we are, and can be, far more beautiful than we have ever imagined possible,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  10. i enjoyed this. fantastical! gracias

    Thank you very much, Marcoantonio,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  11. Mary says:

    Interesting that this is an old poem, Elizabeth! As I was reading it I pictured d.t. as being such a minotaur enraged in his cage….smoke trailing from his nostrils!

    And I can see how you might do that, Mary. At the beginning, I also had a similar image of him. But, with time and some amount of struggle, I realized that my only choice was to forgive him, and that alone brought me a sense of peace.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  12. Rosemary Nissen-Wade says:

    I like it very much, Elizabeth. And I have an old poem somewhere which is quite similar! I must try and find it for you.

    That doesn’t really surprise me Rosemary. We have far more in common than we know. And please do try to find it, I’d love to read it. Thank you,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  13. …and so our task is to find beauty in the minotaurs we encounter in life’s journey. Lovely thought.

    Yes, Beverly, exactly. And it is perhaps the most difficult task we own. We are far more apt to point fingers and make judgements than to see others as just fellow human beings with flaws much like our own, completely forgetting that if we want forgiveness and acceptance, we must first give it to others.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  14. Sherry Marr9 says:

    You describe him so well i can see him. I love the lines about showing him even he can be made more beautiful. I wonder what it would take to soften the orange man.

    Lol, Sherry. I hear you. What I did was pray for him. And was immediately reminded that he is just another flawed, imperfect human being like I am. The hardest part was asking that he be forgiven. And there are days when I still find that the most difficult task of all. But it is the only way I know to find peace.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  15. C.C. says:

    I like the concept that ‘even he’ can be made beautiful….this idea that when we wrestle with our demons and with the darkness inside ourselves, even our shadow selves can be made beautiful.

    You got it, C.C., and thank you. We create those demons and put them in cages. Why? Because we fear them. And they are filled with rage because of one thing. Fear. Fear that they will never be accepted, understood, heard, or loved. It is up to us to show and teach them how to be loved, so they can begin to love as well. And love makes everything more beautiful,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  16. I generally have not felt compassion for the minotaur, but maybe we should… maybe it’s about finding beauty to quench his rage.

    Yes, Bjorn, and thank you. See my response to C.C.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  17. ZQ says:

    Interesting and well done.

    Thank you, ZQ,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  18. annell4 says:

    hummmm….accepting the shadow, learning to appreciate what the shadow has to say, being in gratitude for all things, light and dark, makes us “healthy, wealthy and wise…and last but not least “happy.” Loved the poem about the Minotaur! I also loved the idea of jumping over him, or jumping on his back! What fun!

    Actually, Annell, the performers were young enemy slaves, who had to run straight at him, leap as he lowered his head to charge them, use their hands to steady themselves on his head and somersault onto his back, then leap off again. It was called dancing with the bull, and was the price they paid to stay alive, if they succeeded. In the myth that developed, Theseus was a captured prince who got a magic ball of thread, from the king’s daughter, Ariadne, that allowed him to enter the labyrinth, find and slay the Minotaur, then leave the underground cave where he had been kept, kidnap Ariadne escaping back to his homeland, where he became king.

    The labyrinth became our journey inward to find the pieces and parts of self that most often get lost(becoming wild), in the process of growing up. This is a brief overview of the myth and there’s a lot more to the story. It is definitely a heroic journey with a reward for completion. The reward could be seen as wholeness. Myth can teach us a great deal, if we allow it, and thanks for the comment, my friend.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  19. sanaarizvi says:

    My goodness this is good! You describe him so well! Especially love the part about showing him even he can be made more beautiful.

    Thank you, Sanaa. There are an abundance of stories(on social media, like Facebook), that show how wild creatures respond to kindness and caring by giving trust to those who display those qualities. Why would that be any less real with those pieces of ourselves that have been hidden away in darkness because we fear they will make us unacceptable? I am currently writing about that reality on my 1sojournal site. How I made friends with my inner child, who holds the key to imagination, memory, and music, as well as many other things.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  20. gillena says:

    Luv this fantasy and the meagre weapons of paper and pen did suffice

    Happy a nice Sunday Elizabeth

    Much love…

    Like

  21. magicalmysticalteacher says:

    Masterful!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s