Friday, July 31, 2009

Alma mater anticipation

Yesterday, I received my copy of the Iliad by Homer from the Columbia College Alumni Association.
Please accept this gift as a token of our support for the next generation of College alumni — you! (In preparation for your Columbia experience, please read the first 12 books within the Iliad.)
‘Tis a sweet way to frame 270 pages of summer homework. It even comes with a pretty sticker on the inside cover that reads, “Presented to the Class of 2013.”

It reminds me of the day my copy of the Odyssey by Homer arrived in the mail from Amazon, four years ago. And reading chapters from Edith Hamilton’s Mythology over the summer to prepare for freshman English. And spending my entire first semester of freshman year in high school trying to understand Homer’s words, trying to understand the ancient Greeks, trying to understand Odysseus. I was on my own odyssey, trying to figure out where high school was going to take me.

This time around, I’m not starting off from scratch. My high school taught me well to appreciate literature and to appreciate challenges. When I stare at this Richmond Lattimore translation and glance back at the Odyssey and Mythology, still sitting on my bookshelf and untouched since the end of freshman year, I realize that it’s about time that I get my brain juices flowing again. Graduation wasn't too far ago, but August is approaching.

Miss Couturable
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