Myth Maker: Modern Mythopoetics

A tour of a variety of spirits, and the stories they want to tell.

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
  • Bloggers
    Bloggers Search for your favorite blogger from this site.
  • Login
    Login Login form

Tethys Speaks

Tethys Speaks


My mother, your mother, the Great Mother of All, used to tell me that she was never prouder than the day we Titans overthrew her, and that, in time, we would look so on our children.  When she said this, of course, I thought she was mad, her words the unstructured echos of rumbling hills.  I was young then, barely a maiden, but I remembered when my father had slain me, and I did not forgive.

In the earliest times, before there were men to give us our thousand thousand names, before I split into a million glittering facets, I was called simply “First Daughter” because I was the first daughter of Earth and Sky.  I was the fourth thing in the world; Earth, Sky, and Sea were there to witness my birth, and only they can testify to my story, but two of them will not speak its truth.  Only the Sea bears witness to my pain.  As a girl, when the world was new, I was out in a boat with, my father, Sky.  Just me and Sky, afloat on Sea, Mother Land by now far away.  But I, First Daughter, the Fourth Thing, changed the world with my being.  Weather had come to the Earth.  The Cycle of Water had come into the World.  Before me, there was only Brother Sea, the River At the Edge of the World, wherein all the world’s water was kept.  Then, I came into the world, and I blew with my winds, and I rained down big fat tears from the sky.  The little boat rocked and it swayed and it tipped, and my father grew very afraid.  He knew it was I, First Daughter, Weather that blows through Sky, and he knew that I was She Who Rocked the Boat.  

Afraid, my father threw me away.  My father threw me out of the ship.  I clung to the boat, in the icy cold sea, I hung on to the side of the boat.  But my father, the Sky God, the Patriarch of the World, he picked up an oar, and he Thwacked!  And he Thumped!  My father beat me to make me let go.  Blows landed on my head, on my shoulders, on my hands, but I held on, unshaken, unbroken, unphased.  My father continued to beat me.   Thwack!  Thump!  Bang!  Bash! The sea was cold around me, but colder still grew my heart deep within.  Unloved, unwanted, unmade, I froze all to ice, and my father continued to beat me.  Twack!  Thump!  Bang!  CRASH! I split all to pieces, I shattered like the ice I’d become.  I fell down into the sea, into the embrace of the Sea, through the blue, through the black, I fell forever.  I am still falling.  I am still frozen.  And I do not forgive.

And yet, there, in the depths, at the edge of forever, I was gathered in a warm embrace.  I rose forth as the Fountain of Life.  Four rivers went from me: east, west, north, and south, a holy river in every direction.  I bubbled and burbled and rippled and wriggled, spreading my rish-rushing current of chaos.   The primordial soup burbled and boiled, and I was the bubbles within it.  First Daughter is the goddess of complexity.  I am the dynamism that enlivens all things.  I am the fractal geometry of Nature: the weather, the ripple, the branching of rivers.  I am the scourge of my father, the Order of Heaven, and he is the end of me.

My mother, your mother, the Great Mother of All, used to tell me that she was never prouder than the day we Titans overthrew her.  This I understood, for our father was cruel and distant, and she hated him as much as we.  But she also said that, when our own children rose against us, we too would swell with pride.  When she said this, of course, I thought she was mad, her words the unstructured echos of rumbling hills. I was young then, barely a mother, but I was starting to learn.

Time continued, as it ever does, and my brother Kronos proved just as cruel as our father.  I wonder often what it is that drives a man to hate his children, what it is about kingship that drives men mad.  My own Okeanos adored our children; he taught our Potomoi to flow, and taught our Nereids to dance, and later, much later, he taught Hekate, his beloved daughter of the Stars, all the secrets of the deep below.  But my father was not such a father, and neither was my brother Kronos.  The cycle of violence continued.

“Boys will be boys,” we told ourselves, when the war broke out, and Rhea gave her daughters into my care, that they might be safe from “boys just being boys”.  Rhea’s eldest daughter, Hera, was then a Virgin: her breasts were newly blossomed and her heart still whole. She came of age while she was with me, and I became Matriarch when she became Queen.  The Queen of Above won her crown Below and it was by the hand of the Above that the Below was made Wise.

In those days, when Zeus and Kronos battled, my heart was heavy, but not just with the horror of war.  I missed Okeanos, my brother, my lover, from whom I had parted to save the world.  My thirsty land still longed for the kiss of his rain, and I still hungered to feel his river pour into my sea.  Hera, her queencraft sly, thought we were parted in anger, and wished to reconcile us.  So, while her brother, the inheritor of the Kingdom of the Sky, made war, Hera, who was born to be the Queen of Heaven, set to make peace.  With the juice of the flower of a very rare plant, she thought to tempt us back to each other.  

But that was a mistake, for we were not parted by choice.  Our love was unending, our passion unslaked, and the chant of the plant quite enchanting.  I heard its song, and could not resist, and so too did Okeanos fall under its spell.  River flooded and Sea level rose.  The air became thick with wet need.  Life went quite wild, mutations and changes, biodiversity expanded almost to madness.  The waters of life came once again together in heat and in passion.  The ice that lay between us, the still, slow-frozen waters that hold back the flood, began to drip, drip, drip, melt, and the seas rose to subsume the earth.  The Ogygian Flood had begun.


Hera looked about her, and saw what she had wrought.  All the Earth would soon be under water.  Disaster!  While her brother battled, Hera politicked, and she came eventually to the decision that made her a Queen.  The flood could not be allowed to continue.  And so, Hera killed me, just as surely as Zeus killed Kronos, or Kronos killed Uranos, and just as permanently.  No one ever really forgives their father for killing them, but yet when your child kills you? It’s much to be wanted.  That was the teaching my mother, your mother, the Mother of All, taught to me when I came into Being.  But I did not understand her, of course, until I told it to my children, until I told it to you.


Last modified on
Tagged in: myth Ocean tethys titan water
Sara L. Mastros teaches Witchcraft, Greek and Near Eastern Mythology, Jewish Kabbalah, Pythagorean Mysticism, and Practical Sorcery in Pittsburgh, online, and at festivals all over the East Coast.  Check out her personal blog at or follow along with all her witchy shenanigans on facebooking by "liking" Mastros & Zealot: Witches for Hire" at . In addition to writing and teaching, Sara offers hand-compounded incenses and oils, as well as custom sorcery, hand-made magical tools and altar ware, consultations, divinations, and one-on-one teaching at


Additional information