Pictures for Storynory by Nick Hayes, click to enlarge.
Our story is taken up by Princess Medea. Jason and the Argonauts have arrived in her father’s kingdom of Colchis. They have come to take the fabulous Golden Fleece back to Greece – something her father is not happy about. Medea is in love with Jason and decides to help him with her magic.
Read by Natasha Gostwick.
Pictures by Nick Hayes.
Music by Gabriella Burnel.
Words by Bertie.
Jason and Medea, The Story of the Golden Fleece, told in verse in four parts, by Storynory.
Part Three : Princess Medea.
It is a youthful traveller
Only just a man
So pretty, so witty, it is a pity
I can’t quite understand,
What this feeling inside me is
My pulse begins to race.
I’m so aware that I do not dare
To look straight into his face.
And he was barely more than a boy
But oh boy what a boy.
His dark eyes, lit by lies,
And a look that was coy.
Oh, I quite forgot: me
My name is Medea.
A student in the art, of wild witchcraft
My name men should fear.
I’m rich, I’m smart, I’m full of art,
And this is what I say.
I might be seventeen, but I know what I mean
I will have my way.
My father’s name is Aeetes
He’s king around these parts.
This land of Colchis is kissed by the gods
Wine, women, arts.
A fog from the gods wrapped our city.
And Jason just appeared.
A noble man, from a long-lived clan,
Though the way he appeared was weird.
And Heaven must have helped him then,
My guess: a goddess.
It might have been Aphrodite I think
She is never modest.
This young upstart Greek, had come to seek,
My father’s Golden Fleece.
He had a cheek, that Greek, to come and seek
The fleece of gold for Greece.
Then my dad, though his rule is to be cruel
Invited Jason in.
And a banquet put on, for the guest who had come
to take from him.
Jason spoke with a low manly voice,
Perhaps he was putting it on.
No war with Georgia, No war with no one,
War was not why he had come.
Perhaps some service he could perform
Could the king suggest a quest?
And the price that was nice was the fleece for Greece
The Argo would bring it back West.
And turning to me, father spoke softly,
“This is men’s table talk.
Medea, my dear, your grow bored, I fear
I suggest you take a walk.”
And so I suppose, I stretched and rose,
And slipped out silkily.
For I could hear, from a place that was near
Up on the minstrel balcony.
And my father drank wine and spoke his mind,
“I suppose you’ve heard of Troy
Warriors from Greece, don’t come East in peace
I have reason to fear you my boy.”
And Jason looked hurt, like a friendship had burst
And he seemed like a little boy
“Don’t speak to me, of that cruel history,
No need to talk of Troy.”
And my father softened, or so it seemed.
I knew his hard heart by now:
“My boy you have shoulders that could easily move boulders,
Like an ox that pulls a plough.”
“This is the task that I ask, not hard.
I have a field outside the city.
Take these dragon’s teeth, and sow them beneath,
The earth that’s dark and gritty.”
And my young pretty sap, did not run into this trap
He pondered and he thought:
“Why would he ask a task not hard
For a fleece that could not be bought? “
The craft he couldn’t see, and at last he agreed,
Little did he know,
That a dead army of men, would grow up again
As soon as be began to sow.
And those skeleton men, would fight again
See the dead cannot be killed !
For the god of war, long, long before,
This terrible curse had willed.
And a fearful fact that he did not know
Those fields were full of toil.
No harmless oxen plod Ares’ farm
But bulls must plough the soil.
And then my boy hero stood up to go,
Perfect to my eyes.
The shoulders of a man, the grace of a girl
He was doomed by my father’s lies.
And when he was well away from the men,
My father laughed and said:
The bulls will destroy that precocious boy.
And as soon as he is safely dead.
We shall shove a great rock from a high hill top,
And smash his ship to bits.
And never more, shall pirates plague our shore,
Where the game is double or quits.
Need I say, that in tears and dismay
I tore my hair and my cheeks?
My fingers were red where my face had bled
I was hot, I was cold, I was weak.
For in my heart, I knew, my father was cruel,
He never went back on a threat.
Still worse, he knew no mercy,
Not once had he relented yet.
That night I dreamed of frightful scenes,
It was I that yoked the bull.
It was I that sowed the teeth beneath
The earth so fearful.
When the impossible feat was neatly completed
I turned to my father and said:
“Now give the fleece of gold to Greece,
And Jason the boy I’ll wed.”
By daughter betrayed, father raged
And father flew at me.
There’s nothing so bad, that brings out the mad
As to break with family.
Then I woke in a sweat, the sheets were wet,
And my temperature as high as a kite.
I crept out of bed into the cool corridor.
And there I caught a fright.
For standing in front of me, was him you see,
Yes, the boy, Jason.
I refused his embrace, I stung his face,
And back into my room did hasten.
Then he called to me, knocking softly on my door
In my heart I hoped that he would.
“Medea, my dear, no need for fear,
I give my word to be good.”
I opened up slowly, and there in front of me
He stood. We were like two trees.
That grow side by side, open their arms wide,
And sway together in the breeze.
We did not touch, though the feeling was such
That I will never forget.
Our souls surged, our minds merged,
And still we hadn’t touched yet.
Nothing to say. He pulled himself away,
Like he was leaving home for ever.
Then taking his chance, he gave me a glance,
And I knew we had to be together.
Now not only have I looks, I’m learned in books,
I know my potions and lotions,
There’s no harm I see in pharmacy,
My fingers put magic in motion.
I lit the fire that burned like desire,
And stirred my ingredients in.
There’s power in my powder, and verve in my herbs.
With a flash my fun begins.
Then stealing stealthily down to the sea,
By the path I knew as a child
I found the forbidden boat hidden
In a place that was dark and wild.
It was the Argo alright, a magnificent sight,
As long as it was strong.
And the men slept around on the stony ground,
As I carefully crept on.
My hero now, sat by the prow
My Jason did not sleep
A lotion I gave him, and told him to bathe in it
That lotion would be his safe-keep.
And that was the third part of Jason and Medea told by me, Natasha Gostwick, and written for Storynory by Bertie. I’ll be back soon with the fourth and final part in which we will find out if Jason really does manage to get the Golden fleece for Greece ! And our production of Jason and Medea has fantastic music by Gabriella Burnell and stunning illustrations by Nick Hayes so drop by at Storynory.com for the whole effect.
For now, from me, Natasha Bye Bye.
This part read by Natasha in voice of Medea. Medea is daughter of Aeetes, the cruel king of Colchis, and the owner of the Golden Fleece.
It starts off with the same line as part one “It is a youthful traveller” which is a play on “It is an Ancient Mariner”. Medea talks of her infatuation for Jason, talks of her beauty and her strong will, and reveals that she is a witch. He appeared at their palace out of a mist. Her father invited him to dinner, and he asked for the Golden Fleece offering to perform a quest for it. Her father asked him to sow a field with dragon’s teeth. He did not say that the field must be sewed with bulls, and that they teeth would grow up into a terrible army of skeleton men. Medea dreams that she performed the task herself, and her father was furious with her. She wakes up and goes out into the corridor where she meets Jason. They do not touch but are obviously in love with each other. She follows him down to his ship, and gives him a magic potion to help him form the task.