Absinthe, anyone?

Artemisia, Aragonese Fortress Walls, Milazzo Castle

Artemisia, Aragonese Fortress Walls, Milazzo Castle

Now I know what that plant is. It took Bryan Talbot, artist and comic book writer to point out that the silvery green fronds that cover the castle grounds and stick out from ruins in the old town are: artemis absinthium. Here in Sicily for the Etna Comics festival, Bryan and his wife Mary were taken on a tour of Milazzo’s castle. The castle features in my second novel, and I know a fair bit about its different dominations (Norman-Aragonese-Spanish, among others). I walk past it to the viewpoint of the Aeolian Islands when I’m working something out in my head for plot or character development. And I’d been wondering what this ubiquitous plant with the tiny yellow flowers was. I should have rubbed the flowers between my fingers to release the scent…

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