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05-27-2007, 01:19 AM
Book V

The Gods in council command Calypso by Hermes to send away
Odysseus on a raft of trees; and Poseidon, returning from
Ethiopia and seeing him on the coast of Phaeacia, scattered
his raft; and how by the help of Ino he was thrown ashore,
and slept on a heap of dry leaves till the next day.

Now the Dawn arose from her couch, from the side of the
lordly Tithonus, to bear light to the immortals and to
mortal men. And lo, the gods were gathering to session, and
among them Zeus, that thunders on high, whose might is
above all. And Athene told them the tale of the many woes
of Odysseus, recalling them to mind; for near her heart was
he that then abode in the dwelling of the nymph:

'Father Zeus, and all ye other blessed gods that live for
ever, henceforth let not any sceptred king be kind and
gentle with all his heart, nor minded to do righteously,
but let him alway be a hard man and work unrighteousness,
for behold, there is none that remembereth divine Odysseus
of the people whose lord he was, and was gentle as a
father. Howbeit, as for him he lieth in an island suffering
strong pains, in the halls of the nymph Calypso, who
holdeth him perforce; so he may not reach his own country,
for he hath no ships by him with oars, and no companions to
send him on his way over the broad back of the sea. And
now, again, they are set on slaying his beloved son on his
homeward way, for he is gone to fair Pylos and to goodly
Lacedaemon, to seek tidings of his father.'

And Zeus, gatherer of the clouds, answered and spake unto
her: 'My child, what word hath escaped the door of thy
lips? Nay, didst thou not thyself plan this device, that
Odysseus may assuredly take vengeance on those men at his
coming? As for Telemachus, do thou guide him by thine art,
as well as thou mayest, that so he may come to his own
country all unharmed, and the wooers may return in their
ship with their labour all in vain.'

Therewith he spake to Hermes, his dear son: 'Hermes,
forasmuch as even in all else thou art our herald, tell
unto the nymph of the braided tresses my unerring counsel,
even the return of the patient Odysseus, how he is to come
to his home, with no furtherance of gods or of mortal men.
Nay, he shall sail on a well-bound raft, in sore distress,
and on the twentieth day arrive at fertile Scheria, even at
the land of the Phaeacians, who are near of kin to the
gods. And they shall give him all worship heartily as to a
god, and send him on his way in a ship to his own dear
country, with gifts of bronze and gold, and raiment in
plenty, much store, such as never would Odysseus have won
for himself out of Troy, yea, though he had returned unhurt
with the share of the spoil that fell to him. On such wise
is he fated to see his friends, and come to his high-roofed
home and his own country.'

So spake he, nor heedless was the messenger, the slayer of
Argos. Straightway he bound beneath his feet his lovely
golden sandals, that wax not old, that bare him alike over
the wet sea and over the limitless land, swift as the
breath of the wind. And he took the wand wherewith he lulls
the eyes of whomso he will, while others again he even
wakes from out of sleep. With this rod in his hand flew the
strong slayer of Argos. Above Pieria he passed and leapt
from the upper air into the deep. Then he sped along the
wave like the cormorant, that chaseth the fishes through
the perilous gulfs of the unharvested sea, and wetteth his
thick plumage in the brine. Such like did Hermes ride upon
the press of the waves. But when he had now reached that
far-off isle, he went forth from the sea of violet blue to
get him up into the land, till he came to a great cave,
wherein dwelt the nymph of the braided tresses: and he
found her within. And on the hearth there was a great fire
burning, and from afar through the isle was smelt the
fragrance of cleft cedar blazing, and of sandal wood. And
the nymph within was singing with a sweet voice as she
fared to and fro before the loom, and wove with a shuttle
of gold. And round about the cave there was a wood
blossoming, alder and poplar and sweet-smelling cypress.
And therein roosted birds long of wing, owls and falcons
and chattering sea-crows, which have their business in the
waters. And lo, there about the hollow cave trailed a
gadding garden vine, all rich with clusters. And fountains
four set orderly were running with clear water, hard by one
another, turned each to his own course. And all around soft
meadows bloomed of violets and parsley, yea, even a
deathless god who came thither might wonder at the sight
and be glad at heart. There the messenger, the slayer of
Argos, stood and wondered. Now when he had gazed at all
with wonder, anon he went into the wide cave; nor did
Calypso, that fair goddess, fail to know him, when she saw
him face to face; for the gods use not to be strange one to
another, the immortals, not though one have his habitation
far away. But he found not Odysseus, the greathearted,
within the cave, who sat weeping on the shore even as
aforetime, straining his soul with tears and groans and
griefs, and as he wept he looked wistfully over the
unharvested deep. And Calypso, that fair goddess,
questioned Hermes, when she had made him sit on a bright
shining seat:

'Wherefore, I pray thee, Hermes, of the golden wand, hast
thou come hither, worshipful and welcome, whereas as of old
thou wert not wont to visit me? Tell me all thy thought; my
heart is set on fulfilling it, if fulfil it I may, and if
it hath been fulfilled in the counsel of fate. But now
follow me further, that I may set before thee the
entertainment of strangers.'

Therewith the goddess spread a table with ambrosia and set
it by him, and mixed the ruddy nectar. So the messenger,
the slayer of Argos, did eat and drink. Now after he had
supped and comforted his soul with food, at the last he
answered, and spake to her on this wise:

'Thou makest question of me on my coming, a goddess of a
god, and I will tell thee this my saying truly, at thy
command. 'Twas Zeus that bade me come hither, by no will of
mine; nay, who of his free will would speed over such a
wondrous space of brine, whereby is no city of mortals that
do sacrifice to the gods, and offer choice hecatombs? But
surely it is in no wise possible for another god to go
beyond or to make void the purpose of Zeus, lord of the
aegis. He saith that thou hast with thee a man most
wretched beyond his fellows, beyond those men that round
the burg of Priam for nine years fought, and in the tenth
year sacked the city and departed homeward. Yet on the way
they sinned against Athene, and she raised upon them an
evil blast and long waves of the sea. Then all the rest of
his good company was lost, but it came to pass that the
wind bare and the wave brought him hither. And now Zeus
biddeth thee send him hence with what speed thou mayest,
for it is not ordained that he die away from his friends,
but rather it is his fate to look on them even yet, and to
come to his high-roofed home and his own country.'

So spake he, and Calypso, that fair goddess, shuddered and
uttered her voice, and spake unto him winged words: 'Hard
are ye gods and jealous exceeding, who ever grudge
goddesses openly to mate with men, if any make a mortal her
dear bed-fellow. Even so when rosy-fingered Dawn took Orion
for her lover, ye gods that live at ease were jealous
thereof, till chaste Artemis, of the golden throne, slew
him in Ortygia with the visitation of her gentle shafts. So
too when fair-tressed Demeter yielded to her love, and lay
with Iasion in the thrice-ploughed fallow-field, Zeus was
not long without tidings thereof, and cast at him with his
white bolt and slew him. So again ye gods now grudge that a
mortal man should dwell with me. Him I saved as he went all
alone bestriding the keel of a bark, for that Zeus had
crushed {*} and cleft his swift ship with a white bolt in
the midst of the wine-dark deep. There all the rest of his
good company was lost, but it came to pass that the wind
bare and the wave brought him hither. And him have I loved
and cherished, and I said that I would make him to know not
death and age for ever. Yet forasmuch as it is no wise
possible for another god to go beyond, or make void the
purpose of Zeus, lord of the aegis, let him away over the
unharvested seas, if the summons and the bidding be of
Zeus. But I will give him no despatch, not I, for I have no
ships by me with oars, nor company to bear him on his way
over the broad back of the sea. Yet will I be forward to
put this in his mind, and will hide nought, that all
unharmed he may come to his own country.'

{* It seems very doubtful whether [Greek] can bear this
meaning. The reading [Greek], 'smote,' preserved by the
Schol. is highly probable.}

Then the messenger, the slayer of Argos, answered her:
'Yea, speed him now upon his path and have regard unto the
wrath of Zeus, lest haply he be angered and bear hard on
thee hereafter.'

Therewith the great slayer of Argos departed, but the lady
nymph went on her way to the great-hearted Odysseus, when
she had heard the message of Zeus. And there she found him
sitting on the shore, and his eyes were never dry of tears,
and his sweet life was ebbing away as he mourned for his
return; for the nymph no more found favour in his sight.
Howsoever by night he would sleep by her, as needs he must,
in the hollow caves, unwilling lover by a willing lady. And
in the day-time he would sit on the rocks and on the beach,
straining his soul with tears, and groans, and griefs, and
through his tears he would look wistfully over the
unharvested deep. So standing near him that fair goddess
spake to him:

'Hapless man, sorrow no more I pray thee in this isle, nor
let thy good life waste away, for even now will I send thee
hence with all my heart. Nay, arise and cut long beams, and
fashion a wide raft with the axe, and lay deckings high
thereupon, that it may bear thee over the misty deep. And I
will place therein bread and water, and red wine to thy
heart's desire, to keep hunger far away. And I will put
raiment upon thee, and send a fair gale in thy wake, that
so thou mayest come all unharmed to thine own country, if
indeed it be the good pleasure of the gods who hold wide
heaven, who are stronger than I am both to will and to do.'

So she spake, and the steadfast goodly Odysseus shuddered,
and uttering his voice spake to her winged words: 'Herein,
goddess, thou hast plainly some other thought, and in no
wise my furtherance, for that thou biddest me to cross in a
raft the great gulf of the sea so dread and difficult,
which not even the swift gallant ships pass over rejoicing
in the breeze of Zeus. Nor would I go aboard a raft to
displeasure thee, unless thou wilt deign, O goddess, to
swear a great oath not to plan any hidden guile to mine own

So spake he, and Calypso, the fair goddess, smiled and
caressed him with her hand, and spake and hailed him:

'Knavish thou art, and no weakling {*} in wit, thou that
hast conceived and spoken such a word. Let earth be now
witness hereto, and the wide heaven above, and that falling
water of the Styx, the greatest oath and the most terrible
to the blessed gods, that I will not plan any hidden guile
to thine own hurt. Nay, but my thoughts are such, and such
will be my counsel, as I would devise for myself, if ever
so sore a need came over me. For I too have a righteous
mind, and my heart within me is not of iron, but pitiful
even as thine.'

{* [Greek], from root [Greek], 'ill-grown,' i. e. a
weakling, in the literal sense as B. xi.249, xiv.212, or
metaphorical, as here and viii. 177.}

Therewith the fair goddess led the way quickly, and he
followed hard in the steps of the goddess. And they reached
the hollow cave, the goddess and the man; so he sat him
down upon the chair whence Hermes had arisen, and the nymph
placed by him all manner of food to eat and drink, such as
is meat for men. As for her she sat over against divine
Odysseus, and the handmaids placed by her ambrosia and
nectar. So they put forth their hands upon the good cheer
set before them. But after they had taken their fill of
meat and drink, Calypso, the fair goddess, spake first and

'Son of Laertes, of the seed of Zeus, Odysseus of many
devices, so it is indeed thy wish to get thee home to thine
own dear country even in this hour? Good fortune go with
thee even so! Yet didst thou know in thine heart what a
measure of suffering thou art ordained to fulfil, or ever
thou reach thine own country, here, even here, thou wouldst
abide with me and keep this house, and wouldst never taste
of death, though thou longest to see thy wife, for whom
thou hast ever a desire day by day. Not in sooth that I
avow me to be less noble than she in form or fashion, for
it is in no wise meet that mortal women should match them
with immortals, in shape and comeliness.'

And Odysseus of many counsels answered, and spake unto her:
'Be not wroth with me hereat, goddess and queen. Myself I
know it well, how wise Penelope is meaner to look upon than
thou, in comeliness and stature. But she is mortal and thou
knowest not age nor death. Yet even so, I wish and long day
by day to fare homeward and see the day of my returning.
Yea, and if some god shall wreck me in the wine-dark deep,
even so I will endure, with a heart within me patient of
affliction. For already have I suffered full much, and much
have I toiled in perils of waves and war; let this be added
to the tale of those.'

So spake he, and the sun sank and darkness came on. Then
they twain went into the chamber of the hollow rock, and
had their delight of love, abiding each by other.

So soon as early Dawn shone forth, the rosy-fingered, anon
Odysseus put on him a mantle and doublet, and the nymph
clad her in a great shining robe, light of woof and
gracious, and about her waist she cast a fair golden
girdle, and a veil withal upon her head. Then she
considered of the sending of Odysseus, the great-hearted.
She gave him a great axe, fitted to his grasp, an axe of
bronze double-edged, and with a goodly handle of olive wood
fastened well. Next she gave him a polished adze, and she
led the way to the border of the isle where tall trees
grew, alder and poplar, and pine that reacheth unto heaven,
seasoned long since and sere, that might lightly float for
him. Now after she had shown him where the tall trees grew,
Calypso, the fair goddess, departed homeward. And he set to
cutting timber, and his work went busily. Twenty trees in
all he felled, and then trimmed them with the axe of
bronze, and deftly smoothed them, and over them made
straight the line. Meanwhile Calypso, the fair goddess,
brought him augers, so he bored each piece and jointed them
together, and then made all fast with trenails and dowels.
Wide as is the floor of a broad ship of burden, which some
man well skilled in carpentry may trace him out, of such
beam did Odysseus fashion his broad raft. And thereat he
wrought, and set up the deckings, fitting them to the
close-set uprights, and finished them off with long
gunwales, and there he set a mast, and a yard-arm fitted
thereto, and moreover he made him a rudder to guide the
craft. And he fenced it with wattled osier withies from
stem to stern, to be a bulwark against the wave, and piled
up wood to back them. Meanwhile Calypso, the fair goddess,
brought him web of cloth to make him sails; and these too
he fashioned very skilfully. And he made fast therein
braces and halyards and sheets, and at last he pushed the
raft with levers down to the fair salt sea.

It was the fourth day when he had accomplished all. And,
lo, on the fifth, the fair Calypso sent him on his way from
the island, when she had bathed him and clad him in
fragrant attire. Moreover, the goddess placed on board the
ship two skins, one of dark wine, and another, a great one,
of water, and corn too in a wallet, and she set therein a
store of dainties to his heart's desire, and sent forth a
warm and gentle wind to blow. And goodly Odysseus rejoiced
as he set his sails to the breeze. So he sate and cunningly
guided the craft with the helm, nor did sleep fall upon his
eyelids, as he viewed the Pleiads and Bootes, that setteth
late, and the Bear, which they likewise call the Wain,
which turneth ever in one place, and keepeth watch upon
Orion, and alone hath no part in the baths of Ocean. This
star, Calypso, the fair goddess, bade him to keep ever on
the left as he traversed the deep. Ten days and seven he
sailed traversing the deep, and on the eighteenth day
appeared the shadowy hills of the land of the Phaeacians,
at the point where it lay nearest to him; and it showed
like a shield in the misty deep.

Now the lord, the shaker of the earth, on his way from the
Ethiopians espied him afar off from the mountains of the
Solymi: even thence he saw Odysseus as he sailed over the
deep; and he was mightily angered in spirit, and shaking
his head he communed with his own heart. 'Lo now, it must
be that the gods at the last have changed their purpose
concerning Odysseus, while I was away among the Ethiopians.
And now he is nigh to the Phaeacian land, where it is
ordained that he escape the great issues of the woe which
hath come upon him. But, methinks, that even yet I will
drive him far enough in the path of suffering.'

With that he gathered the clouds and troubled the waters of
the deep, grasping his trident in his hands; and he roused
all storms of all manner of winds, and shrouded in clouds
the land and sea: and down sped night from heaven. The East
Wind and the South Wind clashed, and the stormy West, and
the North, that is born in the bright air, rolling onward a
great wave. Then were the knees of Odysseus loosened and
his heart melted, and heavily he spake to his own great

'Oh, wretched man that I am! what is to befal me at the
last? I fear that indeed the goddess spake all things
truly, who said that I should fill up the measure of sorrow
on the deep, or ever I came to mine own country; and lo,
all these things have an end. In such wise doth Zeus crown
the wide heaven with clouds, and hath troubled the deep,
and the blasts rush on of all the winds; yea, now is utter
doom assured me. Thrice blessed those Danaans, yea, four
times blessed, who perished on a time in wide Troy-land,
doing a pleasure to the sons of Atreus! Would to God that I
too had died, and met my fate on that day when the press of
Trojans cast their bronze-shod spears upon me, fighting for
the body of the son of Peleus! So should I have gotten my
dues of burial, and the Achaeans would have spread my fame;
but now it is my fate to be overtaken by a pitiful death.'

Even as he spake, the great wave smote down upon him,
driving on in terrible wise, that the raft reeled again.
And far therefrom he fell, and lost the helm from his hand;
and the fierce blast of the jostling winds came and brake
his mast in the midst, and sail and yard-arm fell afar into
the deep. Long time the water kept him under, nor could he
speedily rise from beneath the rush of the mighty wave:
for the garments hung heavy which fair Calypso gave him.
But late and at length he came up, and spat forth from his
mouth the bitter salt water, which ran down in streams from
his head. Yet even so forgat he not his raft, for all his
wretched plight, but made a spring after it in the waves,
and clutched it to him, and sat in the midst thereof,
avoiding the issues of death; and the great wave swept it
hither and thither along the stream. And as the North Wind
in the harvest tide sweeps the thistle-down along the
plain, and close the tufts cling each to other, even so the
winds bare the raft hither and thither along the main. Now
the South would toss it to the North to carry, and now
again the East would yield it to the West to chase.

But the daughter of Cadmus marked him, Ino of the fair
ankles, Leucothea, who in time past was a maiden of mortal
speech, but now in the depths of the salt sea she had
gotten her share of worship from the gods. She took pity on
Odysseus in his wandering and travail, and she rose, like a
sea-gull on the wing, from the depth of the mere, and sat
upon the well-bound raft and spake saying:

'Hapless one, wherefore was Poseidon, shaker of the earth,
so wondrous wroth with thee, seeing that he soweth for thee
the seeds of many evils? Yet shall he not make a full end
of thee, for all his desire. But do even as I tell thee,
and methinks thou art not witless. Cast off these garments,
and leave the raft to drift before the winds, but do thou
swim with thine hands and strive to win a footing on the
coast {*} of the Phaeacians, where it is decreed that thou
escape. Here, take this veil imperishable and wind it about
thy breast; so is there no fear that thou suffer aught or
perish. But when thou hast laid hold of the mainland with
thy hands, loose it from off thee and cast it into the
wine-dark deep far from the land, and thyself turn away.'

{* Lit. Strive after an arrival on the land, etc. [Greek]
originally meant going, journeying, and had no idea of
return. The earlier use survives here, and in Soph.
Philoct. 43, Eur. Iph. Aul. 1261. Similarly, perhaps,
[Greek] in Odyssey iv.619, xv.119, and [Greek] frequently}

With that the goddess gave the veil, and for her part dived
back into the heaving deep, like a sea-gull: and the dark
wave closed over her. But the steadfast goodly Odysseus
pondered, and heavily he spake to his own brave spirit:

'Ah, woe is me! Can it be that some one of the immortals is
weaving a new snare for me, that she bids me quit my raft?
Nay verily, I will not yet obey, for I had sight of the
shore yet a long way off, where she told me that I might
escape. I am resolved what I will do;--and methinks on this
wise it is best. So long as the timbers abide in the
dowels, so long will I endure steadfast in affliction, but
so soon as the wave hath shattered my raft asunder, I will
swim, for meanwhile no better counsel may be.'

While yet he pondered these things in his heart and soul,
Poseidon, shaker of the earth, stirred against him a great
wave, terrible and grievous, and vaulted from the crest,
and therewith smote him. And as when a great tempestuous
wind tosseth a heap of parched husks, and scatters them
this way and that, even so did the wave scatter the long
beams of the raft. But Odysseus bestrode a single beam, as
one rideth on a courser, and stript him of the garments
which fair Calypso gave him. And presently he wound the
veil beneath his breast, and fell prone into the sea,
outstretching his hands as one eager to swim. And the lord,
the shaker of the earth, saw him and shook his head, and
communed with his own soul. 'Even so, after all thy
sufferings, go wandering over the deep, till thou shalt
come among a people, the fosterlings of Zeus. Yet for all
that I deem not that thou shalt think thyself too lightly
afflicted.' Therewith he lashed his steeds of the flowing
manes, and came to Aegae, where is his lordly home.

But Athene, daughter of Zeus, turned to new thoughts.
Behold, she bound up the courses of the other winds, and
charged them all to cease and be still; but she roused the
swift North and brake the waves before him, that so
Odysseus, of the seed of Zeus, might mingle with the
Phaeacians, lovers of the oar, avoiding death and the

So for two nights and two days he was wandering in the
swell of the sea, and much his heart boded of death. But
when at last the fair-tressed Dawn brought the full light
of the third day, thereafter the breeze fell, and lo, there
was a breathless calm, and with a quick glance ahead, (he
being upborne on a great wave,) he saw the land very near.
And even as when most welcome to his children is the sight
of a father's life, who lies in sickness and strong pains
long wasting away, some angry god assailing him; and to
their delight the gods have loosed him from his trouble; so
welcome to Odysseus showed land and wood; and he swam
onward being eager to set foot on the strand. But when he
was within earshot of the shore, and heard now the thunder
of the sea against the reefs--for the great wave crashed
against the dry land belching in terrible wise, and all was
covered with foam of the sea,--for there were no harbours
for ships nor shelters, but jutting headlands and reefs and
cliffs; then at last the knees of Odysseus were loosened
and his heart melted, and in heaviness he spake to his own
brave spirit:

'Ah me! now that beyond all hope Zeus hath given me sight
of land, and withal I have cloven my way through this gulf
of the sea, here there is no place to land on from out of
the grey water. For without are sharp crags, and round them
the wave roars surging, and sheer the smooth rock rises,
and the sea is deep thereby, so that in no wise may I find
firm foothold and escape my bane, for as I fain would go
ashore, the great wave may haply snatch and dash me on the
jagged rock--and a wretched endeavour that would be. But if
I swim yet further along the coast to find, if I may, spits
that take the waves aslant and havens of the sea, I fear
lest the storm-winds catch me again and bear me over the
teeming deep, making heavy moan; or else some god may even
send forth against me a monster from out of the shore
water; and many such pastureth the renowned Amphitrite. For
I know how wroth against me hath been the great Shaker of
the Earth.'

Whilst yet he pondered these things in his heart and mind,
a great wave bore him to the rugged shore. There would he
have been stript of his skin and all his bones been broken,
but that the goddess, grey-eyed Athene, put a thought into
his heart. He rushed in, and with both his hands clutched
the rock, whereto he clung till the great wave went by. So
he escaped that peril, but again with backward wash it
leapt on him and smote him and cast him forth into the
deep. And as when the cuttlefish is dragged forth from his
chamber, the many pebbles clinging to his suckers, even so
was the skin stript from his strong hand against the rocks,
and the great wave closed over him. There of a truth would
luckless Odysseus have perished beyond that which was
ordained, had not grey-eyed Athene given him sure counsel.
He rose from the line of the breakers that belch upon the
shore, and swam outside, ever looking landwards, to find,
if he might, spits that take the waves aslant, and havens
of the sea. But when he came in his swimming over against
the mouth of a fair-flowing river, whereby the place seemed
best in his eyes, smooth of rocks, and withal there was a
covert from the wind, Odysseus felt the river running, and
prayed to him in his heart:

'Hear me, O king, whosoever thou art; unto thee am I come,
as to one to whom prayer is made, while I flee the rebukes
of Poseidon from the deep. Yea, reverend even to the
deathless gods is that man who comes as a wanderer, even as
I now have come to thy stream and to thy knees after much
travail. Nay pity me, O king; for I avow myself thy

So spake he, and the god straightway stayed his stream and
withheld his waves, and made the water smooth before him,
and brought him safely to the mouths of the river. And his
knees bowed and his stout hands fell, for his heart was
broken by the brine. And his flesh was all swollen and a
great stream of sea water gushed up through his mouth and
nostrils. So he lay without breath or speech, swooning,
such terrible weariness came upon him. But when now his
breath returned and his spirit came to him again, he loosed
from off him the veil of the goddess, and let it fall into
the salt flowing river. And the great wave bare it back
down the stream, and lightly Ino caught it in her hands.
Then Odysseus turned from the river, and fell back in the
reeds, and kissed earth, the grain-giver, and heavily he
spake unto his own brave spirit:

'Ah, woe is me! What is to betide me? What shall happen
unto me at the last? If I watch the river bed all through
the careful night, I fear that the bitter frost and fresh
dew may overcome me, as I breathe forth my life for
faintness, for the river breeze blows cold betimes in the
morning. But if I climb the hill-side up to the shady wood,
and there take rest in the thickets, though perchance the
cold and weariness leave hold of me, and sweet sleep may
come over me, I fear lest of wild beasts I become the spoil
and prey.'

So as he thought thereon this seemed to him the better way.
He went up to the wood, and found it nigh the water in a
place of wide prospect. So he crept beneath twin bushes
that grew from one stem, both olive trees, one of them wild
olive. Through these the force of the wet winds blew never,
neither did the bright sun light on it with his rays, nor
could the rain pierce through, so close were they twined
either to other; and thereunder crept Odysseus and anon he
heaped together with his hands a broad couch; for of fallen
leaves there was great plenty, enough to cover two or three
men in winter time, however hard the weather. And the
steadfast goodly Odysseus beheld it and rejoiced, and he
laid him in the midst thereof and flung over him the fallen
leaves. And as when a man hath hidden away a brand in the
black embers at an upland farm, one that hath no neighbours
nigh, and so saveth the seed of fire, that he may not have
to seek a light otherwhere, even so did Odysseus cover him
with the leaves. And Athene shed sleep upon his eyes, that
so it might soon release him from his weary travail,
overshadowing his eyelids.