Tiresias was born a man, but
he struck a pair of mating snakes,
which offended the goddess Hera,
who turned him into a woman.
Tiresias served as a priestess
for seven years, married and
bore several children.
Again she came upon
a pair of mating snakes,
but this time left them alone,
and so the curse was lifted.
When later Zeus and Hera
disputed who got greater pleasure
from lovemaking, they consulted
Tiresias, who alone of all beings
had experience of both.
Tiresias observed that women
could derive more enjoyment than men.
He left out the part that for many women,
these pleasures go undiscovered, but
the potential remains true.
Those who choose to partake
in metamorphosis follow the path of
twice-wise Tiresias, cursed and blessed
of the gods to understand both natures,
disrespected and respected by turns
but always whole in themselves.
* * *
Tiresias is a figure from Greek mythology, who transforms from a man to a woman and back again.