I was drawn to this Greek myth because it celebrates the strength and determination of a mother who carries the torch for her child, as well as the resourcefulness of the child. My retelling is inspired by Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Pomegranate Seeds, published in Tanglewood Tales in 1853. In that version, Hades is representative of life’s darker side but he is not evil. My Persephone is a more modern and outspoken girl than Hawthorne’s. And like a present-day working mother, Demeter, though conflicted about leaving her daughter, must tend to her job.  From other sources, I added the lizard boy. He is disrespectful to a goddess, but does not deserve to die. I let him exact his own childish revenge so that Demeter’s act of cruelty does not go unpunished.  I think Hawthorne would have approved of my bringing his tale into the present day. As noted in his preface, “these immortal fables…are legitimate subjects for every age to clothe with its …manners and sentiment and to imbue with its own morality.”   —LGB

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