Some months ago, Kaye at KALLISTI suggested that we polytheists “need to up our printables game.” She posted one printable image with a prayer to Dionysos, which I’ve had on his shrine for a while now. (Thanks, Kaye!)
In honor of Lord Apollon’s holy day (the 7th of each lunar month), I offer the following humble contributions, which I invite fellow polytheists to use freely and share widely. (Three PDF versions linked below.)
The prayer is an oracle quoted by the Emperor Julian the Faithful, the last pagan emperor of Rome, in his “Letter to a Priest.”
The text and translation are from volume 2 of the Loeb edition of Julian’s works, translated by Wilmer Cave Wright, first published in 1913 and now in the public domain. I have slightly adjusted Wright’s punctuation and transliteration of Greek names, but otherwise left his translation unchanged.
Sorrow, tragedy. Depth of rage and anguish. Tears flow, hearts break. Sky darkens, hopes fade. The folly of pride, revealed at the last: The foolish and the luckless brought low Before Gods and mortals. Bitter cleansing. Katharsis.
Yet that is not all. That is not the only story Told together, On one stage.
Joy, comedy. Sky brightens, Dawn’s fingers Bring day where once was night. Tears flow once more, But now of levity, Mirth too much to contain. The lost restored, hope triumphs: Lightness and blessing. Success.
The bitter with the sweet, The fullness, from high to low, Seen together, On one stage.
While in the wings, Bless’d sisters watch, Hand in hand, side by side. Inseparable.
Just outside an open window Mighty, agéd Oak stands sentinel. New green leaves dance, sway In time with gentle breezes. Sun’s dappled beams filter through The leaves, and the windowpanes. Wind picks up, blows strong, Supple branches twist and wave, As leaves find their voice Singing susurrus songs of spring.