Aeolus is the King of the Winds and lives in luxury on Aeolia, his island in the middle of the Mediterranean. One day twelve Greek triremes sail into his harbor, crewed by thirsty, starving men. It turns out they’re lost soldiers from the war at Troy, led by a fellow named Odysseus. Utterly entertained by this warrior captain’s tales, Aeolus hosts the hungry Greeks for a month. They rest, grow strong again, and he lavishly provisions their fleet for the journey home.
Before they leave, Aeolus secretly hands Odysseus a leather bag tied with a silver wire. “In this bag,” he says, “are all the storm winds of the sea. Keep the bag closed, and you’ll have good winds at your stern all the way to Ithaca.”
Sadly, it turns out, as they approach Ithaca, jealous sailors open the bag, thinking there’s gold inside, and release the winds. Sudden storms blow the fleet all the way back to Aeolia, where this time the king curses them.
Hapless again, the fleet next comes upon an island swarming with giant cannibals.
I’ll be telling this episode, and many others, this Saturday night at 8 pm at the Riverwalk Music Bar in Nashua, NH, when I perform The Odyssey: An Epic Telling.
Music on 12-string guitar and Celtic harp. Vivid character voices. Sounds of winds and sea.
Grab some friends and enjoy a different kind of night on the town.