Then, stirred to hot anger, the glorious Shaker of Earth spake unto her:
“Out upon it, verily strong though he be he hath spoken overweeningly, if in sooth by force and in mine own despite he will restrain me that am of like honour with himself. For three brethren are we, begotten of Cronos, and born of Rhea,—Zeus, and myself, and the third is Hades, that is lord of the dead below. And in three-fold wise are all things divided, and unto each hath been apportioned his own domain.
I verily, when the lots were shaken, won for my portion the grey sea to be my habitation for ever, and Hades won the murky darkness, while Zeus won the broad heaven amid the air and the clouds; but the earth and high Olympus remain yet common to us all. Wherefore will I not in any wise walk after the will of Zeus; nay in quiet
let him abide in his third portion, how strong soever he be.And with might of hand let him not seek to affright me, as though I were some coward. His daughters and his sons were it better for him to threaten with blustering words, even them that himself begat, who perforce will hearken to whatsoever he may bid.”
Then wind-footed swift Iris answered him:“Is it thus in good sooth, O Earth-Enfolder, thou dark-haired god, that I am to bear to Zeus this message, unyielding and harsh, or wilt thou anywise turn thee; for the hearts of the good may be turned? Thou knowest how the Erinyes ever follow to aid the elder-born.”1
Then answered her again Poseidon, the Shaker of Earth:“Goddess Iris, this word of thine is right fitly spoken; and a good thing verily is this, when a messenger hath an understanding heart. But herein dread grief cometh upon my heart and soul, whenso any is minded to upbraid with angry words
one of like portion with himself, to whom fate hath decreed an equal share. Howbeit for this present will I yield, despite mine indignation; yet another thing will I tell thee, and make this threat in my wrath: if in despite of me, and of Athene, driver of the spoil,
and of Hera, and Hermes, and lord Hephaestus, he shall spare steep Ilios, and shall be minded not to lay it waste, neither to give great might to the Argives, let him know this, that between us twain shall be wrath that naught can appease.”
So saying, the Shaker of Earth left the host of the Achaeans, and fared to the sea and plunged therein; and the Achaean warriors missed him sore.