This most unusual chalk and oil sketch seems at first glance more typical of Raphael Lamar West's work than that of his father, but its confidence and grandeur suggests a more experienced hand. The subject appears to derive from the Odyssey:
'The Cyclops lifted up his hands to the starry heavens and prayed to the Lord Poseidon: '...Grant that Odysseus, sacker of cities and son of Laertes, may never reach his home in Ithaca. But if he is destined to see his friends again, to come once more to his own house and reach his native land, let him come late, in wretched plight, having lost all his comrades, in a foreign ship, and let him find trouble in his home'.' (Homer, The Odyssey, Bk. IX, p. 140).