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Homer creates a sense of hopelessness and uncertainty in the passage. For example, Odysseus is described as being left in a state of perplexity and distress, which creates a vivid image to the reader of just how confused and uncertain he is. He also says that he ‘cannot think of anything better’, which suggests he felt helpless in this situation, and creates this sense of hopelessness and doubt in himself and the gods. This makes this an effective passage therefore as this vivid description gives the reader a clear idea as to what Odysseus feels and thinks.

Homer also uses violent imagery, such as using verbs such as ‘plunged’, to create the effect. This adds a dramatic effect and therefore makes it an effective passage. Additionally, adjectives such as ‘turbulent’ and ‘grim and menacing’ further reinforce this idea, and so make the passage even more effective.

The waves and wind described in the passage seem to mirror Poseidon’s anger and scornfulness towards Odysseus. For example, the wind is described as ‘boisterous’ and the sea is described as ‘grim and menacing’, which directly mirrors Poseidon’s festering feelings towards Odysseus. This creates an effective passage as Poseidon’s anger can be seen in a physical form – a storm – and is mirrored by the sea and wind.

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This also creates a very clear image of the power imbalance between Poseidon and Odysseus. The idea that Odysseus had to ‘scramble’ connotes that he was weaker than Poseidon and so was trying to run away from him and his power. This creates sympathy for Odysseus, as he was trying to run away whilst Poseidon continued to punish and destroy him.

Homer also uses a simile – ‘sitting astride like a rider on horseback’ – which allows the reader to visualize how Odysseus was sitting. It also helps him connect with his audience at the time, as this was a simile many would understand and be able to visualize. This therefore makes it an effective passage because it helps both the modern and the historical reader to understand exactly how he sat.

The simile ‘like a gull she dived’ also adds effect. This is because many can picture a gull diving into the water, so it is easy to visualize for the readers (both present and past). This also creates detail surrounding the exit of the goddess and adds a mystical and creative aspect to the passage. This passage is therefore effective for this reason.

Finally, Homer uses personification to add effect to his passage. For example, he said, ‘the dark waters swallowed her’, which creates this idea of the sea eating her, which is good imagery as the reader can imagine this happening. This is effective due to the reader being able to picture the goddess being ‘swallowed’ by the sea.

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