“The Apology of Dionysus”: A Poem by Santi Tafarella

I know that you like my bee-

balmy glades,

and my jugs

heavy with their sweet wines—

but mine also are the snake’s skin

and the wind-whip

of biting sands.

I weed your gardens

with rakes of

lightening and flurries of hail,

frosting your fruits and

blighting your fields.

The racks and screws of winter

are the instruments of spring.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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1 Response to “The Apology of Dionysus”: A Poem by Santi Tafarella

  1. greenpagan says:

    Dear Santi:

    Great poem. I too am big on Dionysus & have written Dionysian poems. That’s was during the last time I was in love (aka fixated) about 2 yrs. ago & therefore inspired. (I was crazy about her. She was just crazy. Afterwards I was a basketcase. But time heals…most wounds.) In fact, I am Dionysus. A manifestation anyway. As all men who recognize appreciate & accept that concept metaphor reality. Playing Old Dionysus these days in the sacred groves of Love that has–as Time has taught, as Experience has wrought– its own ways.

    My current situation: How does a graybeard (fully functioning male method actor, I might add) love his young mistress? (Beautiful energetic coffee-addicted Chinese pre-med student holding three jobs who isn’t even of alcohol drinking age yet, but is otherwise legal.) Answer: Very delicately. Help her explore herself in every way. Try fulfilling all her needs. Always receive what she lovingly offers, which is everything.

    Although after my last deep affair I swore off Love, the Goddess has taken me under Her wing. She tricks me, teases me, tortures me. But in the end takes pity, shows mercy, & is kind.

    I think she’s great. (She reminds me & stands in for the last one, who in turn stood for at least one before that; & I suppose I’m attracted by their best “All women are One Woman” qualities; the UrMother in all Her forms with open arms nurturing Her Son always.

    All true to my experience. A high adventure, yes. If you go that way beware. Prepare for ecstacy & hurt. But as I’m sure I’ve expressed before: I wouldn’t have it any other way. Others avoid the cliffs & rocks & go into something safe like engineering…or making donuts…)

    For some unknown reason she’s fascinated with me. Thank you, Dionysus!

    I guess you could say this is a poem (lettre poétique) in response to your own fine piece.


    Che Warshofskii


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