“T’was on one bright March morning I bid New Orleans adieu
And I took the rode to Jackson town, me fortune to renew
I cursed all foreign money, no credit could I gain
Which filled me heart with longin’ for the Lakes of Pontchartain.
I stepped on board of a railroad car beneath the morning sun
And I rode the roads ’til evening and I laid me down again
All strangers here, no friends to me ’til a dark girl towards me came
And I fell in love with a Creole girl from the Lakes of Pontchartrain.”
This very old song is not quite as old as the story I’m going to tell you:
It was one bright march morning near Enna on Sicily. Persephone and her mates were gathering narcisses, quite oblivious of all around them, when suddenly with a thunderclap the earth burst open and Hades on his chariot rode up from the underworld, caught the beautiful girl and headed down again. Cyane, a nymph nearby, saw all this and implored the god not to abuse Kore. But in vain: Hades transformed her into a well (Κυανῆ = greek. “dark blue”). This well Cyane is still to be seen nowadays near Syracuse….
P.S. We still have the unhappiest memories from cyanides. For sure they are from the underworld. But Cyane got only the same innocent blue name….