you were full of stars blooming and rotting and you had a chest that ached with whole worlds and beings yet to be. they were just pieces of your parents colliding inside of your bones. the growing pains were enough to rip whole galaxies apart and sew them back together again.

we bloom and we wilt and we bloom again.

“here boy, eat, eat,” you offered yourself.

and zeus did. oh, how he did!

Relief with Phanes, ca. 2nd century A.D. - Modena Galleria Estense

Phanes (Ancient Greek: Φάνης]), or Protogonos (Greek: Πρωτογόνος, “First-born”), was the mystic primeval deity of procreation and the generation of new life, who was introduced into Greek mythology by the Orphic tradition; other names for this Classical Greek Orphic concept included Ericapaeus (Ἠρικαπαῖος or Ἠρικεπαῖος “power”) and Metis (“thought”).

In these myths Phanes is often equated with Eros and Mithras and has been depicted as a deity emerging from a cosmic egg, entwined with a serpent. He had a helmet and had broad, golden wings. The Orphic cosmogony is bizarre, and quite unlike the creation sagas offered by Homer and Hesiod. Scholars have suggested that Orphism is “un-Greek” even “Asiatic” in conception, because of its inherent dualism. Time, who was also called Aion, created the silver egg of the universe, out of this egg burst out the first-born, Phanes, who was also called Dionysus. Phanes was a uroboric male-female deity of light and goodness, whose name means “to bring light” or “to shine”; a first-born god of light who emerges from a void or a watery abyss and gives birth to the universe