Theseus slew the Minotaur and escaped
with the aid of Ariadne’s thread but,
I learned later—after my mythology book had spent
dark years mildewing in a box—abandoned her on Naxos.
I came to consider that youth unheroic, more than
just careless in causing his father’s suicide,
returning alive from the man-beast’s den,
and forgetting to change black sail for joyous white.
So I try to reconcile the creep and the hero from
my reading of long ago,
and will work on Jason and Medea the same.
At least she gave her man blood and guts
and a dragon exit—half of the couple, heroic—