To a Child Dancing in the Wind

Dance there upon the shore;
What need have you to care
For wind or water’s roar?
And tumble out your hair
That the salt drops have wet;
Being young you have not known
The fool’s triumph, nor yet
Love lost as soon as won,
Nor the best labourer dead
And all the sheaves to bind.
What need have you to dread
The monstrous crying of wind!
                         —W. B. Yeats

I didn’t love this poem until I was old enough to really get it. It is so loving and tender and enchanted by the ineffable charm of innocent youth; and it is also so bitter.

When I was young I remember seeing that bitter look on older peoples’ faces at the oddest times. Just when I expected them to join in my delight at some wonderful plan my friends and I had cooked up—we’ll spend a whole winter in a cabin with nothing but a wood stove to keep us warm and we’ll write and paint and make maple syrup in the spring; or after my friend Mina and I read Peter S. Beagle’s I See by my Outfit and we wanted to ride across the country on motor scooters, when we were twelve—and suddenly there it was, trusted faces suffused with affectionate amusement, and laced with bitterness.

But why? Why?

Now I know.

There comes a day, the first of many days, when we tumble out our hair that the salt drops have wet, and feel not joy but confusion and even fear. Not yet dread, we’re still too optimistic for that. But the pure sweetness of dancing in the wind, oblivious to the water’s roar, is gone forever even though we don’t know it yet.

It is on a day like that, or shortly after, that Tiffany, Crystal, and Brittany, all daughters of Zeus, begin their stories in the Daughters of Zeus Trilogy, Kristine Grayson’s omnibus that we are publishing this week. It’s the third of four Grayson omnibuses WMG is publishing this spring.

In it, the girls have been stripped of their magic and their positions of power on Mount Olympus, and now they have to grow up. And like many teens, they must deal with a) Dad, who in their case is Zeus and doesn’t realize that the lusty days of his power and glory are over; b) their moms, human and protective, who don’t realize that despite the girls’ childhoods with the Gods, the girls aren’t as out of touch and incompetent as their moms think; c) relatives, such as Athena, Dionysus, Eros… you know; and d) the Fates. What could possibly go wrong?

Lots, of course. The girls are young and have not known a fool’s triumph, nor love lost as soon as won. But they’re about to know the ups and downs of being both teens and extraordinary.

Get the omnibus Tuesday, May 21. Also, get the individual novels, Tiffany Tumbles, Crystal Caves, and Brittany Bends, in brand new editions both as ebooks and paper.