Trying to get back to my regular(?) posting schedule here. I’m currently in Las Vegas attending a publishing business workshop. It starts this afternoon and I’m very excited to soak up some knowledge.
For me, I touched a thought, I know,
Has tantalized me many times,
(Like turns of thread the spiders throw
Mocking across our path) for rhymes
To catch at and let go.
On the surface, a love poem, but I know it goes deeper than that, only I’m not going to pretend I know just how. Still, I found the whole thing enchanting.
Secrets of the Scrolls by Jo Marchant in Smithsonian Magazine (July/August 2018)
The scrolls represent the only intact library known from the classical world, an unprecedented cache of ancient knowledge. Most classical texts we know today were copied, and were therefore filtered and distorted, by scribes over centuries, but these works came straight from the hands of the Greek and Roman scholars themselves. Yet the tremendous volcanic heat and gases spewed by Vesuvius carbonized the scrolls, turning them black and hard like lumps of coal. Over the years, various attempts to open some of them created a mess of fragile flakes that yielded only brief snippets of text. Hundreds of the papyri were therefore left unopened, with no realistic prospect that their contents would ever be revealed. And it probably would have remained that way except for an American computer scientist named Brent Seales, director of the Center for Visualization & Virtual Environments at the University of Kentucky.
I hope I live long enough to see these puppies cracked.
“My God! What a sight he saw! The moon had shone out of a sudden, and the light of it struck down on Dignum’s face, and that was the colour of dirty parchment. And he looked higher, and give a sort of sob.
A really fun story out of another Barnes and Noble anthology I started purposely this month to get in the Halloween mood.