On Neptune

I tied myself to a river so that I could make music. Music is my favorite art. I tore my flesh and flung open my arms. My ribs became a harp, my lungs two flutes. The river laughed. Each day I would be visited by my daemon, a bald creature with wings and a serpent’s body. She also knew what I was doing, and that my work was important—I was not to be disturbed, I told her—but she was often lonely, and this world is very frightful if you are alone. That’s why I tied myself to the river in the first place, so that I might be filled with song, since the world is so awful. Yes, I divined after all the suffering of my lifetime that the solution should be music. The message came from Neptune. I needed to go to the river, devote myself to it, and I would be saved. But… now that I have done so, Neptune seems to have forgotten me. He never visits. I never feel his glittering tail. Not even a hair off his body floats down the river to meet me. Where is he? Where is Poseidon, who advised river marriage and music? And if he is gone, why am I still tied to this fast deep water?