Odysseus and Polyphemus

(Excerpt taken from The Dodona Prophecy)

Ryan stood high on the volcanic ridge, searching the landscape.  The one-eyed giant appeared mid way up the slope and lumbered away.  He had a long stick in his hand, like a weapon.

Ryan frowned, unable to shake the feeling that he was living a scene right out of Homer’s Odyssey — the tale of Odysseus and Polyphemus.

Trapped in the cyclops’ cave, Odysseus had lost many men to the man-eating giant. But there was only one way out and Polyphemus had it blocked with a giant boulder, moving it aside only twice a day: once to release his sheep in the morning and the other to admit them at night.

Eventually, Odysseus devised a clever ruse to escape. Befriending the giant, he and his remaining men inebriated Polyphemus, then speared him in the eye with a sharpened stick.

Hearing Polyphemus’s yells of agony, the other cyclopes on the island rushed to his aid. When they asked who’d hurt him, Polyphemus replied, “Nobody,” as that was the name Odysseus had given the cyclops while sousing him with wine. So they left.

The next day, Odysseus escaped with his men, clinging to the belly of the sheep as the blinded Polyphemus checked their backs when releasing them.

Departing the island, fuelled by triumph and hubris, Odysseus yelled back his true name. “Nobody can defeat the great Odysseus.”

Ryan took a deep breath, wondering what misadventures lay ahead. One thing was for sure. If he and Mandy ever managed to escape the cyclops, there was no way he’d taunt it like Odysseus — earning him Poseidon’s wrath, thwarting his homecoming for some time.

Ryan shook his head.  Not very smart, was it Odysseus?

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