131. C.P. CAVAFY: Ithaka
Constantine P. Cavafy (1863-1933) was a Greek poet, although he was born and spent most of his life in Alexandria, Egypt. Ithaka is one of Cavafy’s most famous poems and is a tribute to the original Greek poet, Homer, and his poem The Odyssey (which along with it’s companion, The Iliad, are the two oldest known works of Western literature). The Odyssey revolves around the hero Odysseus and his long voyage home to Ithaka after the Trojan war.
My hero in the comic is NOT meant to be Odysseus. I used Cavafy’s words and drew upon my childhood diet of comic books and Ray Harryhausen movies to tell a different story.
– There are many English versions of Ithaka. I used the translation by Edmund Keeley and Philip Sherrard, found on the official Cavafy website.
– The cyclops I drew is a homage/swipe of Ray Harryhausen’s cyclops from The 7th Voyage of Sinbad.
– For a sexy Scottish version of Ithaka, here’s a reading by Sean Connery.
– Thanks to everyone who sent in this poem, I’ve had it saved in my quotes folder for over a year now.
– For those interested, here’s a podcast interview I did recently.