"The Hidden Journey": Response To The Poem "Ithaca" By C.P. Cavafy.

744 words - 3 pages

Everyone is given the opportunity to take the odyssey that is "life, however it is important to make the journey as memorable as one possibly can. The poem "Ithaca" by C.P. Cavafy suggests that what is most important in life is the experience that is incorporated with the journey, not necessarily just reaching the ultimate goal. It is the quest, not the destination which matters most. This message is conveyed through the poem through the use of allusion, myth and symbolism.The poem, "Ithaca", is based loosely around the great epic the Odyssey by ancient Greek poet Homer. In the Odyssey the character Odysseus trying to make his way home to his kingdom, Ithaca. The character faces many vicious creatures and other challenges he must endure in order to make it to the final goal. This is alluded to in the poem, by making reference to one of the characters starting out on "[his] journey to Ithaca" (line 1). C.P. Cavafy also refers to mythological creatures such as "the Cyclopes and the fierce Poseidon" (line 5), as well as "the Lestrygonians" (line 6) posing as obstacles during the journey, just as they did in the Odyssey. The allusion to the myth of the Odyssey is appropriate for the meaning the poet is trying to convey. References to the Odyssey evoke thoughts of going on a journey, which may include obstacles, new experiences and the opportunity to gain a wealth of knowledge. This is central to what the poem "Ithaca" is suggesting about the journey of life. The journey of life is all about the experiences that one encounters, the knowledge that is gained, and the deeper appreciation for the journey, not just for attaining the goal. The poem is somewhat faithful to the myth of the Odyssey. C.P. Cavafy does not distort the myth in any way, but rather leaves out many of the events that occurred in the Odyssey that perhaps were not relevant to the central theme being portrayed. The general idea of the journey to Ithaca is kept intact throughout the poem.The central theme of the poem "Ithaca" is based on the meaning of life, and the journey that one takes through life. The...

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