How many colours to describe the sea?  I have never come across seal-coloured – a sleek, deep grey-taupe. But search among my triologisms and you will find many moods and hues of the sea. This one comes as part of a marvelous build up to the appearance of a goddess, Achilles’ mother, a first hint of her emergence in a ‘scent of oceanic lavender’. This and several dozen more vibrant triologisms come from Christopher Logue’s pulsating rendition of several books of the Iliad, to be reviewed here soon.  But look out for sneak previews of its magical writing in the striking metaphors also appearing in this blog.



Before the gods appear

Something is marked:

     A noise.  A note, perhaps.  Perhaps

A change of temperature.  Or else, as now,

The scent of oceanic lavender,

That even as it drew his mind

Drew from the seal-coloured sea onto the beach

A mist that moved like weed, then stood, then turned

Into his mother… 


Source: Christopher Logue, War Music, London: Faber and Faber, 2001, p. 8

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