Hymn to Kerberos

Cerberus 1824-7 by William Blake 1757-1827

O black-wingéd carrion
Serpent-maned lord
O mist-cloaked companion
Guideth thine horde

Star-gleamed are thine muzzles
And nail-sharp thine teeth
O Three-headed bloodhound
Who dwells underneath
Where Hecate’s torches
Illumine thy sight
Till pale moon of Juno
Doth brighten the Night.

O black-wingéd carrion
Tomb-thronéd lord
Orion’s companion
Guideth thine horde

Thy tongue laps the Waters
Of Acheron’s flow
Which guardeth the secrets
Of treasures below
Where gem-crusted caverns
Reflecteth the skies
Where all of us travel
When Death’s Raven flies

O black-wingéd carrion
Bone-crownéd lord
O Charon’s companion
Guideth thine horde

Insatiate eater
Of clay-curséd meats
Brought into the sunlight
By Herakles’ feats
To roam midst the people
In iron-clad binds
Thy breath a miasma
That troubled their minds

O black-wingéd carrion
Viper-tailed lord
O Orthros’ companion
Guideth thine horde

I offer a sweet cake
Of honey to thee
In thanks for the doorways
Thou openst for me
O glorious Cerb’rus
Of Sirius Star
And Scarab-jewelled Moonlight
No mortal can mar

O black-wingéd carrion
Sepulchre lord
O Hades’ companion
Guideth thine horde

Naberius

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