Oracular complexities, blundering gods, and the inexorability of time

The Just City - Jo Walton

"This was never a problem before I became mortal,  Saying  precisely as much as I want, with as many multiple meanings as words can be made to bear, has always been one of my oracular specialties. Composing oracles like that can be as much fun as really complex forms of poetry.

But since I became Pytheas things had all been more complicated. I sometimes blurted out things I shouldn't, and there were those huge areas of human experience that I kept blundering into with both feet. . .

Being a mortal was strange. It was sensually intense, and it had the intensity of everything evanescent – – like spring blossoms or autumn leaves or early cherries. It was also hugely involving. Detachment was really difficult to achieve. Everything mattered -- every pain, every sensation, every emotion. There wasn't time to think about things properly – – no possibility of withdrawal for proper contemplation, then returning to the same instant with a calm and reasonable plan. . .

Time was inexorable and unstoppable. I had always known that, but it had taken me fifteen years as a mortal to understand what it meant. "

Apollo, disguised as Pytheas

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