To the Gods of Hellas and Beyond

Also from the Polytheist Hymnal.

Sing to me, clear-voiced daughters of heavenly Zeus,
of the whole company of the Immortal Gods, and
do not let me forget any of the august divinities,
nor let my voice falter as I praise them, dear Muses.
I will begin with Zeus, King of Gods and men,
who thunders from the top of Olympos, and his dear wife and sister,
queenly Hera, mistress of wide-pastured Argos.
And of the Earth-shaker Poseidon I will sing, who loves horses,
and waves that break upon the shores,
and makes his home deep beneath the waters, where there is no wine.
Next there is Aegis-bearing Athene, protector of high-walled cities,
who is pleased by wise speech and gave man the olive-tree as a boon.
Golden-haired Demeter I sing, mistress of our fields and of blessed Mysteries,
and her slim-ankled daughter Persephone,
who spends two portions of the year above ground
with the Blessed Immortals, and one portion below
with the spirits of the dead, and her dark husband, Haides,
who accepts no sacrifices, for in time, all things come into his hands.
I sing of the light now, of Phoebos, the Lord of Delphi,
Far-shooting Apollon, the light of the sun, and of holy inspiration,
averter of plagues, and player on the kithara.
His sister I will sing, the lovely virgin Artemis,
who runs through the forest, delighting in the hunt,
and who watches over women in childbirth,
and our young daughters.
Ares I sing, very strong, who hates the tyrant,
and leads our sons in battle against the enemies of walled cities.
Love, they say, is also a conqueror – so I shall sing of Aphrodite now,
loveliest of all the Goddesses, fair Kytheria, born of the foam on the waves.
And her son, who stands by her side and sends out his darts
to pierce the hearts of mortals and Gods alike with love,
Eros who has wings and many shapes.
Hephaistos I sing, a stranger to Olympos,
who spends his time beneath the waves,
working metal and making wonders for the Gods and men.
Hermes frequently wanders the earth, on errands for Zeus,
or guiding the souls of the dead to Haides’ dark house.
A thief, and a protector of those who travel – Hermes is a very busy God!
I sing of Hekate, who stands amid the cross-roads,
clad in saffron, a great protector against witches and their evil charms.
Triple-formed, she has power over the sky, the earth, and waves.
I will sing of the virgin Hestia, sitting by the hearth,
tending her sacred fire now.
All the Gods and mortals honor her,
for she brings sweet concord into the home.
Dionysos I sing, wild God of the fields and mountains,
who gave as a boon to man wine, which banishes sorrows,
and sacred Mysteries, which purify the soul.
Arcadian Pan I sing, the shepherd’s God who plays haunting songs
upon his flute, and chases after the lovely-breasted Nymphs.
I sing of horned Selene, who comes out by night
and sheds her gentle light upon the sleeping world,
and Helios, whose fiery chariot is drawn by four swift steeds.
The Mountain Mother Rhea I sing, who delights in drums
and lions, she who is called the Mother of Gods and men,
an ancient and revered Goddess.
Ge I sing, the very earth upon which we live.
Broad-bosomed and sustaining life –
every blessing we have, we have through her.
Ouranus, the starry vault of heaven I sing,
who reaches down to touch Ge his love,
just as in mountains, she reaches up to embrace him.
I sing of all the Nymphs now –
those who call the mountains their home,
or haunt the shaded forests.
Those who live in rivers and springs
and all running waters,
and the Nymphs in trees and rocks and sacred precincts.
Herakles I sing, lion-hearted son of Zeus,
strongest of mortals, who ascended to heaven
by his own might and virtue,
perfect protector of those who kindly beseech him.
And the twin sons of Zeus I sing,
Kastor who tames horses, and blameless Polydeukes,
the Dioskouri, a great help to sailors.
I sing the Epidauran, Asklepios, who is son of Phoebos,
and like his father, a wise Physician to Gods and men.
Asklepios takes away the pains of mortal men,
and stands between us and every disease.
He even has power to call back mortals from Haides’ house,
though Zeus forbids him to use it.
The Phrygian shepherd boy, I sing,
Ganymede whom Zeus, in the form of an eagle,
snatched up and carried to Olympos to be cupbearer for the Gods.
The lovely Ariadne I sing, Queen of the Bacchantes
with her husband Dionysos, a mortal who became a Goddess,
and now has a share in the power of Aphrodite.
Semele I sing, who in pains of birth,
was struck by the lightning of Zeus,
and cast down into Haides,
where she awaited the coming of her child Dionysos,
who raised her up to the company of Immortals.
I sing of Leukothea, who protects sailors
from waves and jagged rocks,
and Orpheus, founder of Mysteries,
who made the trees and rocks
and animals dance by his playing.
I sing of Adonis, the sad youth
whom Aphrodite loved and lost.
Eris I sing, of the Golden Apple,
who brings discord among the Immortals, but also laughter,
and Tyche, who causes what we least expect to happen.
Necessity I sing, who no man can escape,
and Philosophy, gentle Goddess who teaches us
how to meet life’s afflictions heroically.
I sing of the drunken Satyrs in the forest, honoring Dionysos,
and the Korybantes, performing their dances with swords
for the Great Mother of Mount Ida.
I sing of the Kytherian’s attendants,
the Graces and Charities, those lovely maidens swathed in silks.
I sing of the Blessed Ones, on whose graves we leave flowers
and libations of milk and honey, our ancestors,
who have power yet to affect the living world.
And I sing of you, dear Goddesses,
who have helped me with this hymn,
the Nine Maidens of Mount Helicon.
You are the ones who pour out beautiful speech,
and make us proficient at singing and dancing.
Playing upon your harps, you fill the world with harmonious sounds,
and make things enchanted, beautiful, and wonderful.
You are very dear to my heart,
you daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne.
I sing also of the Gods known outside of Hellas –
of Isis, who has many names,
and Mithras who slays bulls.
Of Bellona who gnashes her teeth,
and Agdistis, both male and female.
Of double-headed Janus
and Priapus who must carry his penis in a cart.
Of the Thracian Hero who rides horses
and the snake-God Glykon.
Of the Celtic Brigid who likes wells and beautiful songs
and Hadad the Thunderer.
Of shining Melqart and Astarte of the night sky.
Of Nuit, and Hadit, and Ra Hoor Khuit
and even Iao who is worshipped with no image.
I sing of all the many Gods I have not mentioned by name –
but who are no less honored by me.
May the whole Divine Assembly remember me,
and bless me for this song I have sung for them.