By Christopher Logue
The scene is determined for chilly Calls, the 5th and penultimate instalment of Logue's Homer, an ongoing undertaking - a section of performance-art for the web page instead of the level - which has taken numerous a long time to spread, and has been defined as, 'Less a translation than an version. much less an version actually, than an unique poem of substantial power.' (Derek Mahon)
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Her vivacity and volubility, another trait which she never loses, it would take pages to illustrate. When in the earlier scenes Antony is trying to break to her his purpose of setting out for Rome she Poets and Playwrights 22 will not permit him more than a word at a time, and she catches him up and twits him, rallies and teases him, without mercy or remorse. So with the messenger of his marriage — she interrupts and anticipates, wheedles and deprecates, bullies and cajoles. And when baffled by Fate at Antony's death, and by Seleucus in the presence of Caesar, she rails almost as volubly as ever.
To be a Welshman, as only a Welshman can know, is to be more than any king. Who dared to say that Shakespeare wasn't a seer and prophet, and did not, in the spirit, see these closing days of the year 1921? Fluellen is a full-length portrait; the Scot or the Irishman, the merest sketch. Shakespeare had seen schoolmasters of his tribe, no doubt, in Stratford, which is, of course, near the Border; and he drew another and similar one in Evans, the parson and schoolmaster in The Merry Wives of Windsor.
It is because he is a schoolmaster, not a politician, that he exhibits the blandness, indeed, but not that flexibility and knowledge of othei peoples which would be expected of him in England today if we were to justify Shakespeare's knowledge of his race. A schoolmaster is a schoolmaster the world over. "He feels it his mission," as Mr. Poets and Playwrights 50 Stone has said, "to set people right"; and whether by instruction or admonition, by encouragement or chastisement, he does this to everybody, scolding a bit as he does it, but keeping on the whole unimpaired the good-humor of the virtuous.