A reverie against the angled desk

Words written in the biting cold, words of history destined to make history, a reflection thrown on the page, on reflection the ink is so dense, like oil coming out from the womb of the earth, the same earth from which the walls of this scriptorium were made, before the abbot ordered the rooms to be rebuilt in stone with the money collected from the grain, and the fish, and the written words on animal skin, the skin that suffers from end to end and keeps on suffering long after the animal has been sacrificed to the Lares of quills and knives and stretching tables and pigments and gold leaf, ad maiorem Dei gloriam, in response to recent events and honouring the distant past, while nobody else cares a iota about the words imprisoned between two wooden boards like a coffin hosting a healthy living body, enterred without ceremony but with bloodshed, falling nails, days unending, insufficient light and dwindling material, the words of the master scribe flying around the room like paper planes, nobody to understand them properly, how many such words doing laps in abbey rooms, how many Ciceros and Virgils and Ovids duplicated, triplicated, multiplated, no-one to scan the line after it’s been drawn on the virgin vellum, pricked and cut with a thousand cuts, back to where it started, where words are cut out of shape beyond time, the angles and curves following the curvature of the universe contained in that circle become sphere which was the world for them but misunderstanding to us, when words look the same but mean different things, and the same word used again and again means something else each time, that the reader can’t keep up and needs a guide, or perhaps just another commentary to pick the hermeneutical key closest to the heart, the one which unlocks all the secrets that nobody bothers to keep, until the justification has been exhausted and the nib is so blunt that no new words may be incised for eternity.

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