Psyche and Eros - Beauty All Around Her
Psyche in the Garden of Amore
Psyche awoke to a pleasant scene of Nature's beauty. She thought fate or the beast had played a cruel trick on her. She sat up and rubbed her tired eyes. Then she heard the birds and the water in the brook. She stretched her arms up and yawned. "This cannot be real," she murmured. "I am dreaming, I must be." She stood up and slowly walked to a tree laden with blossoms and touched the lovely pink flowers. The fragrance filled her and cleared her mind.
There was beauty all around her, everything she had always loved about nature. Birds were in every tree, flitting around and singing sweetly to her. Fragrant blossoms of the trees floated gently down to caress her face and land on her shoulders and hair. The brook beside her flowed gently over small rocks, bubbling forth its own song to sing with the birds. The grass was thick and soft as a kitten's fur. Butterflies flirted with her as they fluttered around her face then left to dance with the garden flowers. The fragrance in the air was heavenly.
Everything around her spoke of love. She could not believe it was real, and began exploring, touching, smelling, looking at it all -- listening to the music of birds,bubbling waters from the brook and fountains she found. "Is it a dream?" she kept asking. No, it was all real. Then through the branches of fragrant blossoms hanging over a path, she caught a glimpse of a beautiful castle. Tiny birds came and whispered in her ears, "Go, you belong there. It is your home." She hurried through the gardens and stood in an open meadow carpeted with wildflowers. Before her was the most beautiful castle she had ever seen. It looked like it was made from love, for love.
Carpet of Wildflowers
Her own Home
Cautiously, she walked up to the golden doors of the castle and stood there, hesitant to go inside. The doors were open, so she entered and looked around. Everything she had ever dreamed of for comfort was there. All was exquisite, lovely. It looked like each room she entered had been created especially for her. The entire castle made her feel welcome, and her fears were forgotten. She sensed peace and comfort.
She sat down on a couch and leaned against the cushions. Soft harp music began to play and made her feel relaxed. The voice of a man spoke to her, a voice filled with love that touched her heart, "It is all for you, my beloved wife." She looked around and saw no one, then asked, "Where are you?" Silence made her wonder if he had left. "I am away right now. I will come to you after dark and we will be together then. I cannot come to you when there is light." Psyche was puzzled. "Am I not to see the face of my husband? Can I not see you in the light?"
"You must trust me, beloved. Remember to always trust me," his voice faded then he was gone. She suddenly felt safe and knew that no harm would come to her. The fear of having to see the horrible looking beast was gone -- the sound of his deep soft voice made her feel loved, protected.
Psyche inspected her new home and the gardens as she waited for night to come. When she was hungry or thirsty, food and drink appeared on a table near a couch. She saw no servants, but her every need and wish was fulfilled, like magic. When she felt tired and wanted to go to sleep, a warm bath of fragrant water with flower petals floating in it awaited in her chamber. After bathing, she put on the beautiful soft gown that lay on her bed, blew out the lantern and slipped under the covers.
He came to her when she was in between awake and asleep. Their love was so perfect and beautiful and she slept in his arms. She trusted him and felt no fear, only gentle love.
Psyche Opening Door to Gardens of Eros
Love Grows More Dear
Psyche grew to love her husband more each day. That first night with him had made all her fears disappear. She knew only love and peace now. She was asleep when he first came to her. She felt a warm hand touch her arm and woke shaking with fear. In that sweet voice she first heard when she came to the castle, he told her to not fear him, for he would never harm her. "I will love you and protect you forever," he whispered. "Even if you were sent to the gates of hell, I would be with you in spirit and protect you from all harm."
"You must always have faith, my beloved, and trust in me. I am a giver of life and death and you will always be protected because of my love for you." ( Apuleius, 125 - 180) He kissed her softly on the lips and she opened her arms to him. She was shocked to find that she held the form of a young, strong man -- like her, he was in the bloom of life and she opened her heart to him. Their love filled her with a joy she had never known before. She knew they belonged together -- this was her new life, her husband, her beloved. She had asked him again why she could not see him in the light. He explained that it was because of a sacred decree that he could come to her only under the cover of darkness -- he would tell her no more than that.
The days of fear and terror of the unknown for Psyche had grown into a life of comfort and love. Her days were filled with everything she could wish for. Every thought was filled with joy, every need fulfilled instantly. Every night was filled with love -- she had learned that trust in her husband had made her life peaceful. And trust in his love for her enabled her to love him in return.
It no longer mattered to Psyche what he looked like, for the love he gave her, the trust and faith they had in each other, was enough to fill her life. She was so happy. As she sat in her garden one day, painting the birds and beautiful blossoms, she thought about her sisters. She suddenly wanted to share with them how blessed she was. She desired that her family should know she was alive, safe, loved, and had a good life. That night, when her husband came to her, she asked him if she could invite her two sisters to come visit and see her lovely home. He told her it was a bad omen, that nothing good would come of it.
Still, Psyche wanted her sisters to know about her life and told him she would not let anything bad happen. He finally gave in to her, for it was hard for him to refuse her anything. She thanked him with numerous kisses and slept blissfully that night in his arms. He did not sleep well and was restless.
Psyche sent a message to her sisters to visit and a few days later they arrived. Megalometis and Baskania were extremely impressed with the castle, the gardens and with the change that had come over Psyche, for she was more lovely and happy than ever. This, of course, made their jealousy grow even deeper. Their lives were not half so grand, nor were they happy as Psyche was, even though they were married to kings.
Psyche Shows Sisters her Gifts From Eros
Sisters Cause Doubts in Psyche
"How can you love a man you have never seen in the light of day?" they asked. Psyche explained that looks do not matter when faith and trust was in her heart and their nights together were blissful and joyous.
They thought her stupid and told her so. "He has cast an evil spell on you, to make you love him and believe that he is good. He is evil and all on Earth, even the gods fear him. You must find out what he looks like. No sensible woman would allow a man to do this to her."
Psyche began to have doubts in her mind, but her heart told her she loved her husband and should keep the faith and trust alive. The sisters kept badgering her and at the end of the day, before they left, they told Psyche what to do. Psyche was so beaten down by their harassment that she listened to her sisters and said she would do as they say.
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When it comes to matters of love, does it matter to you what your beloved looks like?
Note From Author
I hope you are enjoying my series on Psyche and Eros:
Psyche and Eros - her Beauty Brings Misfortune
Psyche and Eros - Eros is in Love
Psyche and Eros - Beauty all Around her
Next in this series is:
Psyche and Eros - Betrayal
© 2014 Phyllis Doyle Burns