Tonight I got the chills while I was reading Rhiannon’s story. It’s so old and so exactly how humans are, even now.
It goes like this: Pwyll, the King of Dyved, is back from saving the world, and the land is lush and the Dow is up and all is well for a few years, but then the weather goes wrong and the market crashes and all the ancient Welsh babies are dying and also the power is out and there’s a run on bottled water at the Safeway and everybody blames it on the King.
Like people do.
So then the priests see their moment and say “Dude. This is all your fault."
It’s actually the High Druid who says this. I had some trouble with this, with a Druid being a bad guy, because I think of Druids as the keepers of ancient tree magic and stuff… And you know how I feel about trees...But the author of this particular interpretation of this ancient Myth (Evangeline Walton) she is working in some legit history. The High Druid –who here is making political hay while the sun don’t shine – he is of the New Tribes. They took the mantle from the druids of the Old Tribes when the New Tribes conquered. The Old Tribes respected and revered the land and the goddess mother. The New Tribes are out to stamp her out. It’s your typical religion-as-the-tool-of-the-conqueror story. The Bad Druid even says so. He talks about how the Old Tribes derived their strength from the Mother, the land. How the rulers were Queens. And the High Druid says of the old, land-respecting, traditions:
“It is…a blessing that that line of witches came to an end. To make men stronger and women weaker we druids devised the Bridal with the White Mare. In her name, we wield the Queens’ ancient power.”
You know what? I don't even want to get into what the Bridal with the White Mare is. Suffice to say that it is the Druids' super perverted way of getting Kings to dominate the land while appealing to the basest reality TV show impulses of the population. And they are pissed at Pwyll, because he refuses to do it.
I am aware as I write this that there is a Republican debate that happened tonight, where Donald Trump and Ted Cruz were doing everything they could to appeal to the most ignorant racist religious assholes in the land…
This all feels so familiar.
Plus, the failing economy of Dyved, which supposed prove that Pwyll is a bad leader... it’s all a con! The Bad Druid says so! They did it, the bad druids made all the shit go down so that they could get the man of the people off the throne and replace him with their puppet. “Yet by our arts we spent old men have brought all these woes upon Dyved…”
Reminds me of Republican economic policies. Right?
But just wait. Rhiannon is just offstage. She is about to bring the magic and shut this shit down.
Would it be nice to believe that was about to happen now? Wouldn't it be nice to live that story? Wait, are we?