My poem “OH MAD ARACHNE: A Folle in Three Acts” is included in NonBinary Review#19Dante’s Inferno, which was published by Zoetic Press inDecember 2018. This one came out in a wild rush of words, quite unlike my normal process of writing poetry. It’s based on the story of Arachne, just a tale of a woman tearing another woman down. Let’s just say I have no love for Artemis.
Arachne is mentioned in “Inferno” in relation to Geryon (Canto XVII). On a side note, Geryon is Medusa’s grandson and Medusa is yet another woman who was cursed by a goddess, only this time it was Athena. (Go figure.) My inspiration came from the Gustave Doré’s image of “Arachne,” from the 12th Canto of Dante’s “Purgatory” (see below). However, when I realized Arachne was actually in Purgatory, not Inferno, I’d already written this poem. Luckily, my editor Lise Quintana loved it anyway and decided to include it in this marvelous issue. Enjoy!
To kick off the new year, I’ve started a project revolving around Andrew Lang‘s The Blue Fairy Book (1889), which was the first of twelve “coloured” fairy tale collections published through 1910. There are 37 tales in The Blue Fairy Book, which includes seven tales from the Brothers Grimm, five from Madame d’Aulnoy, three from the Arabian Nights, and four Norwegian fairytales, among other sources. Every eight to ten days, I will be posting one of the fairy tales along with my notes of potential links, mash-ups, and outside sources on Patreon. Other posts will include commentary on the original authors and collectors of these tales, links to contemporary retellings, and classic fairy tale illustrations. It’s going to be a fun ride, and I hope you will join me on this adventure.