Logue’s rendering of Homer is powerful because he makes it immediate, either by transporting you through sheer force of description to the battlefield before Troy, or by air-lifting you in an instant from a scene three thousand years ago to something that happened yesterday, or last century.  Here he likens Ajax to Rommel after Alamein.  I also like how he conveys the strength of Ajax’s voice as projecting over five acres.

‘And on the next, Ajax,

Grim underneath his tan as Rommel after ‘Alamein,

Summoned the army to the common sand,

Raised his five-acre voice, and said…’

Source: Christopher Logue, War Music: An account of Books 1-4 and 16-19 of Homer’s Iliad, London: Faber and Faber, 2001, p. 13

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