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One of the most powerful features (tropes? modalities?) of Homeric verse is the juxtaposition of one POV with another. Maybe the most famous instance is when Helen at Troy wonders where her brothers are -- and they are lying dead, in the "life-giving earth".
Or Andromache, making a lovely hot bath for her husband Hector, not knowing that he has already been killed by Achilles.
Or Odysseus crying at the song of Demodocus, about a woman widowed and enslaved by his own actions. There's a complex, ambiguous gap between the points of view.
Or Nausicaa, bravely standing her ground against a potential rapist who may also be a guest, and we also glimpse the desperate, partly predatory perspective of Odysseus himself.
Or the slave Eurycleia's joy at her owner's slaughter of 13 other slaves, even when the narrator has shown us the violent, lonely shame of their killer, and the terrible, gruesome pity of their deaths.
Or Penelope's test of her husband, and the juxtaposition of her vision of their bed, marked with tears, and his vision of his bed, constructed by himself.
The gaps in perspective are sometimes at least half funny. There can be a comic shock, as well as the tragic shocks. We see the beauty of Calypso's home from the narrator, and then we see Hermes' perspective: what a schlepp to get out there.
The gaps, the shifts, the multiplicity of perspectives are essential to the rich, layered social vision in Homer, and also essential to the representation of the divine. Night falls. A touch. A mist on the sea. A goddess is present. Now everything changes.
One of the best interviews about my Odyssey translation was by the great @fran_wilde; she saw and brought out that diversity of POV was one of the key features of Homer for me.
Some element of this comes through in the best moments of "War Music", by Christopher Logue, tho' IMHO he didn't have the interest in people or feelings that are essential in Homer. euppublishing.com/doi/abs/10.336…
I love Homer for many reasons. An essential one is that they [preferred pronoun] contain so many voices. You can be almost laughing one moment, and have chilled goosebumps the next. It is a whole world.
Translation is like acting. You need hard work and the blessings of a goddess, to speak wholeheartedly, sincerely, in many other selves, to become people who are not you, who are not always you, who are you.
A lovely, more than half funny instance of Homeric multiplicity is Iliad 3.11, where we get 2 POVs in one line: to shepherds, fog is a nuisance, but for a burglar, it’s great. Homer speaks to us all: thieves and shepherds both.
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