When I was a child, Mother took me to see the bones of great kings, their weapons, their gold, their slaves and wives – slain in a time of wine and ritualistic sex, along their horses – still carrying them into battle, in the afterlife.
You must be one of those kings, Mother said. That is who you must become, at the very least. Ordinary life is small for you. That is not enough. That belittles you. That besmirches your potential.
You are my Son. Painfully I waited for you. Then, one night, in a dream, you appeared, foretelling your arrival. I cried in my sleep. I had expected to see a new-born, but instead you walked towards me, guided by your mother. And I felt guilty that I loved you more than I loved your mother.
Then I learned that your mother was to have a son, and I rejoiced. Then, much later, your mother arrived with you, just as I had seen you in my dream. And I finally embraced you.
Much you have given me.
How did I survive not seeing you, how did I live with you so far away from me? And why did you not seek my help when I offered it? You do not have to hide anything from me, I am your closest one. Gift me all your secrets, and I will not refuse your gift.
I spoke to a fortune teller. And she saw your great Ascent. She told me of your Great Future. This child will fly – I have never seen anything like it. I do not know how, but he will fly.
You have a gift. You see things that other do not. You see the future.
I remember when you called me, frightened by a snake. I crushed its head. Later they told me – it was not poisonous.
But I would have killed it again if I could.
To calm you down.
For my Son.