They came from the east these strange gods, the mystical troupe travelling on the orgiastic chariot of Dionysus. There are no dark forests in this land, but when the moon is full, everything takes the colour the olive tree leaf hides in its underside. That’s when they spoke, and the women listened; they sang and danced and shed their clothes. They roamed the plains and climbed the rocks, those maenads, and drank from secret potions no man ever partakes.
And then came the thirst for blood. They may have saved quick-witted Ariadne from the hands of this ungrateful rogue Theseus, but then again, isn’t it they who ripped apart Orpheus’ flesh –a crime not yet redeemed? And then went to wash their bloody hands –unholly, unrepentant– right at the feet of mount Olympus. Such nerve!
How could our ancient twelve stay silent in the face of such deed? They did. It was that crystal water which could not bear the shame. The river took the blood and disappeared, right in front of those women’s eyes. And farther down came up again, its name since then Vafyras.
Vafyras = coloured red