Rhododaktulos Ēōs

Saw Rosy-fingered Dawn do her stuff this morning. Was up earlier than usual to take la wife to O’Hare for her 6 AM flight and so I was able to enjoy all those pink clouds I’d normally snooze through.

The sunrise display caused me, as always, to wonder how Homer got it so wrong. Granted, he was blind, but couldn’t someone have told him the clouds at dawn look more like ribs than fingers? If Dawn is said to look like rosy fingers, doesn’t that evoke a picture of clouds radiating from from a central palm? (See figure 1.)

Rosy-fingered Dawn.

Figure 1

That seems all wrong. Homer nods indeed. If one fine morning we saw a giant pink hand looming over the horizon, we’d be sure the end of the world had come.

No, not fingers. I think Homer would have done far better to call her “Pink-pancake Dawn.” (See Figure 2.)

Pink-pancake Dawn.

Figure 2

There. Now that’s more like it. Pink-pancake Dawn: a better metaphor visually, and as a bonus it carries a suggestion of a delicious breakfast treat.

While we ‘re on the subject: Don’t you think Rudyard Kipling is way off base when he says, “An’ the dawn come up like thunder?” Well, I do. Maybe the dawn thunders “outer china ‘crost the Bay on the Road to Mandalay” but it barely squeaks around here. Oh, man. I’m going back to bed.

I'm with the Cowardly Lion on this one.

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2 responses to “Rhododaktulos Ēōs

  1. You’ve got it all wrong. Dawn’s rosy fingers are pulling the cloud curtains aside, so they’re horizontal.

    I will confess to being impressed by all the classical references, as well as your knowing how to muck around with the Greek. Cartoonist school is much more demanding than I ever would have expected. ;o)

  2. The University of Babelfish has a strong language curriculum.

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