A greater man there never was than you,
Almighty Zeus, nor a larger lust
Than for the ever-thoughtful Metis, who
Begot with you a babe, though e'er she blushed.
And yet the oracle of Mother Earth
Saw first a girl-child, then a son follow
With high powers. You feared that second birth;
Suppressed your pregnant Thought in one swallow.
The climax of consumed lover in full
Phase became a vast pain, enough to blind.
A sharpened axe against your ruptured skull
Was sole cure to sooth the aching mind.
From that breach sprung forth in connate wisdom,
Athene--armoured with words--a grown woman.