...the mildness to which men ... had yielded was only half of the intoxication of beauty, while the other half ... was of such surpassing and terrible cruelty—the most cruel of men delights himself with a flower—that beauty ... failed quickly of its effect...
Jeremy Davies is made of ink, but don’t dip a feather in him. It tickles. He once painted a fingernail black and no one really noticed. He was disappointed. He’s also an editor, a religious atheist, a liker of strong coffees, a Shakespeare-lover, a political anarchist and someone who rarely has a pen when he needs one. He has been a PhD candidate, a personal trainer, a life model, a bouncer, an infantry soldier and someone who rarely had a pen when he needed one. He has had words published in a variety of places, in a variety of publications, in a variety of forms, in a variety of moments: Canada, Wet Ink, SMS and twelve minutes past three in the afternoon being some of these. His first novel, 'Missing Presumed Undead', will be re-published by Satalyte Publishing in February 2014. A second is on its way.
This is the book that kinda started it all for me, as far as my memory allows that is. I can remember my dad reading me this in bed, using the drama of his voice to heighten the experience, and seeing the stark ink drawings---particularly of Grendal's dismembered arm---and just being in a state of delicious fear and wonder.
I must have been about 8 years old or so. I went on to Robert E Howard's Conan books and then, The Lord of the Rings, but I owe a lot to Sutcliff's rendering of this great poem.
I also managed to track down a copy of the same edition that was read to me for my own children.