Omeros Essay

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In the following excerpt, Leithauser considers Walcott's epic poem as a recovered history of 400 years of the Antillean islands, most of which has passed without being recorded. He also discusses the links between Omeros and the Iliad and Odyssey of Homer. Leithauser also discusses Walcott's style and prominent themes in the work.

In one of the first glimpses we have of Helen, the heroine of Derek Walcott's book-length poem Omeros, she walks barefoot along a beach on her native Antillean island of St. Lucia, singing a Beatles song. The tune is "Yesterday," and the line she focusses on strikes a note of understated wistfulness: "Yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away." Helen is reflecting upon the upheavals of romance— as well she might, for she, in her surpassing beauty, is a heart-breaker. An "ebony girl" in a "lemon frock," she has recently been fired from her...

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This section contains 3,759 words
(approx. 10 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Omeros Study Guide
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Epics for Students
Omeros from Epics for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.