Over the cups, the mate speaks, and Palinurus pounds on the board until the table grows quiet:
In the beginning was Llyr, and the earth was quiet, and water.
Llyr, Sky-Maiden Llyr, in Her endless circling of the world, imparted movement to her path. You have seen, perhaps, if you have drunk deeply from the clear well with an eye at the bottom, the currents you can induce in a tub with your water. Just so the air that Llyr shaped with Her passage. She had no design, nor grand plans, but simply a joy in flight, and so came the wind, the high winds that trailed behind her, and gave direction to the unruffled surface of the water. Windward, anti-windward. Alee, aweather.
Winds moved the water, and the water gave birth to currents. Sun’s heat and Llyr above gave birth to the currents. Glorious birth; out of this came life, as geese from barnacles. And first, from the deepest mud, came Briny Maw.
Through the portholes noise of the sea comes into the mess; the creaking of timbers and the soft song of the watch are the only sounds from the ship.
Briny Maw. Thirty miles long Briny Maw. Deepest king, and mildest. First to thrash the mud of sea-bottom, first to break surface of the winedark sea. Deathless Briny Maw, who was king before Rhodomantades brought death and age into the world; who lives yet. First to live, last to die, Briny Maw.
The table stamps. “Briny Maw!”
Deathless, thirty miles long, Briny Maw.