I’m Sorry I Was a Bad Eagle. Please Stop Making Me Eat That Disgusting Man’s Liver.

You know how you chained Prometheus to a rock for eternity, and I have to eat his liver every day? That punishment was way too cruel. To me.

Hey, Zeus. Old buddy. Pal.

I know that we’ve been on the outs ever since you declared, “BRING ME THE BEAUTEOUS GANYMEDE,” and I rolled my eyes and groaned, “Oh, good – another ‘cup twink’ for Zeus; I was so worried we were gonna run out. . .” But it’s been thirty millennia, so it’s about time that I come right out and say it: you know how you chained Prometheus to a rock for eternity, and I have to eat his liver every day? That punishment was way too cruel.

To me.

First of all, that spot where you chained him in the Caucasus? Nowhere near my nest. I’m aware you mostly hang around Olympus, but surely even you know that mountain range is 750 miles long. That’s one hell of a commute. And you gods may eat the same thing every damn day — a little ambrosia, a little nectar — but the rest of us crave some variety. Wanna know what I had for breakfast this morning? Warm liver. The ten million, nine hundred fifty thousand days before that? Warm liver. Tomorrow? Oh look — more warm liver. Would it kill you to leave me some sides once in a while? Maybe dolmades. Or a nice chianti.

Have I mentioned how big a Titan liver is? It’s huge. I’m very bloated, Zeus.

Would it help if I apologised? Fine. Besides the Ganymede thing (which you weren’t supposed to hear), I’m sorry I ate that squirrel I found in your throne room – I had no idea that you’d transformed one of your nymph sidepieces to hide her from Hera. You should pick a bigger animal next time. And don’t nymphs basically grow on trees?

Also, I’m sorry that I said that you “can’t get girls unless you turn into a bird first.” That was unfair. Sometimes you turn into a bull. Or marry your own sister.

But, as I was saying, it’s not just the monotony that’s bothering me. It’s the guy that the liver’s attached to. I can’t sugarcoat this: Zeus, Prometheus reeks. He’s been lying out there in the sun, unshowered, for countless ages of man, so I have to chew through a Seven-Layer Dip of Stank to get anywhere near his organs. It’s disgusting. For the love of You, can’t you at least send Hermes to hose him off once in a while?

Also, I can’t blame Prometheus for this, but the daily torture and isolation from all of humankind is making him. . . a little off. After a few centuries of screaming, he went through this phase where he kept trying to bite me “so we’d be even.” Now, he thinks he has jokes. I don’t chat with my food if I can avoid it, but lately, as soon as I land, he’s started doing this spasmodic little wink and saying, “Come here often?” Then he makes finger guns. It’s mortifying. Even if I did occasionally drop your thunderbolts right behind you and snicker when you jumped, subjecting me to this level of social awkwardness seems cruel and unusual.

So, have I guessed my Bird Crime yet, or was it something else? I mean, I’m not the Oracle of Delphi here. Be honest: is this about that night that we both got really drunk, and you said, “yooooo – your mom’s a hideous sea monster,” and I said, “WELL, AT LEAST MY DAD LOVED ME ENOUGH THAT HE COULD TELL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ME AND A LITERAL ROCK,” and then you didn’t speak for like twenty minutes? I went too far. Kronos is off limits. 

Remember all the good times we had? Like when you saw me soar by right before you fought the Titans and thought, “Damn, whatta bird! Like, omen-quality. Must be my lucky day.” I served you well. And, if we’re being honest, I’m about as well-behaved an eagle as you are a god, and I don’t see anyone making you chow down on offal.

Wait, what? Really? I “won’t be doing this much longer”? I’m not sure why you said it all weird and darkly chuckled, but I’m glad you’re coming around, man. You’re sending Heracles on a “liberation mission” with a long-range bow? Good. Maybe we can go hunting after he frees me. But, whatever we catch, he can eat the liver.

Author’s Pick

Earthlings (Sayaka Murata); Peeping Tom (1960, dir. Michael Powell); “Polite Bear Waves Hello” on YouTube.

I hope you like them, and I take zero responsibility for any emotional damage.

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Amanda Lehr
Amanda Lehr

Amanda is an organic lifeform based in Brooklyn, NY. Her work has appeared in McSweeney's Internet Tendency, Slackjaw, the Belladonna, the Niche, and several of the Zodiac letters.

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