This one is a bit self-indulgent, and reveals more of my nature as a true dork. But as I wrote a few weeks ago, I have been telling Juniper the stories of the Greek myths. And she loves them. Perhaps the greatest thing about staying home with her is that I control what culture she is exposed to. She is not in some daycare watching a Diego video in constant loop or listening to other little girls talk about Disney princesses and all that. There is a limited window where I can tell her what stories I want to tell her, and where she will beg to hear of Icarus, and Medusa, and Athena with her owl. It's not that I believe this will somehow make her smarter than some aficionado of Dora the Explorer, it's that I hate Diego and Dora and I am selfish. And I enjoy these stories myself unencumbered by the pressures of the academy. I don't have to find some deeper meaning, or translate anything. I can just enjoy these stories with her on a purely childlike level, like I did when I was young. That pure enjoyment was the whole reason I went into studying them in the first place (though the truly-geeky classics nerd in me may whip out a version of this book with the original Greek alphabet---finding images for the letters that did not exist then was kind of challenging). This book is designed to be a jumping-off point for the telling of myths.

I went with the graffiti again, not just because I was able to find so many street art images with scenes from classical mythology, but because I liked the idea of seeing myths not only explicitly in the art of modern city streets, but sometimes implied from the context. In ancient Rome, the walls in the city were covered in graffiti, public art, and images from history and mythology. So, it seems, are our cities, if you look for it.

A is for Athena, the goddess of wisdom
B is for Bellerophon, who tamed Pegasus
C is for Cassandra of Troy, the seer
D is for Dionysus, the god of pleasure

E is for Echidna of the Snakes, the mother of all monsters
F is for the Furies, who tormented Orestes
G is for the Griffins of Scythia, who guarded gold
H is for Helen of Sparta, whose face launched a thousand ships

I is for Icarus, who flew too high
J is for Janus, the god of doorways and change
K is for Kalypso, who kept Ulysses too long
L is for Leda, who loved a swan

M is for Medusa, whose hair was made of snakes
N is for Narcissus, who loved his own reflection
O is for Orpheus, the father of songs
P is for Polyphemos, the Cyclops

Q is for Queen Penthesilea of the Amazons, the only match for Achilles
R is for Rage, the rage of Achilles that sent so many Greeks do their doom
S is for Sisyphus, pushing his boulder uphill
T is for Theseus, who slew the Minotaur

U is for Ulysses
V is for Venus, the goddess of love
W is for the Wiles of Ulysses, who designed the Trojan Horse
X is for Sphinx, who told riddles

Y is for the Yearning of Ulysses and Penelope
Z is for Zeus, the king of all gods

If there is any interest, I'll update this later with a link to a lulu site where it will be available at cost just like the last one. I have two more of these graffiti alphabet books (animals and objects) that I am working on, both of which will be far more accessible than this one.