Beltane                                                                              New Garlic Moon

When I get interested in something, I buy books.  Not just one book, but many books.  Book buying has always been an important of my life and continues to be.

Latin is a for instance.  When I first got interested, I bought Wheelock, an iconic text for autodidacts wanting to tackle the language.  At another point I bought a dictionary and a book, library2011-05-06_0874501 Latin verbs fully conjugated.  Once I begin to learn Latin and could see more learning ahead, I purchased the OLD, the Oxford Latin Dictionary, which is the gold standard of Latin-English works.  Thanks to Amazon I got one for a very good price.

At the same time I began to focus on Ovid.  I needed a Latin text without English, but with a commentary.  I found William Anderson’s.  It’s not bad, but it’s not as helpful to a real tyro like me as it could be.  I just bought a translation with commentary by D.E. Hill.  Again, the commentary leaves a lot to be desired from my amateur perspective.  I also bought a wholly Latin text by Richard Tarrant, a contemporary Ovidian scholar who has done careful research into the oldest texts available, all from the middle ages, 1100-1200.  I bought this last one because while learning Biblical interpretation I got stamped with the important of textual criticism.  Words matter and having the best text matters.

At this point, if I can’t find something on Perseus, the go to place for classics scholars, I have, so far, always found it in one of my books. I also have several books on Ovid and Roman poetry.  Each has helped me at some point.

I have similar collections of books for other areas:  Lake Superior, Biblical interpretation, theology, liberal thought, liberal religion, the enlightenment, the Renaissance, depth psychology, travel, China, Japan, Angkor, Ralph Waldo Emerson, neuroscience, Hawai’i, Minnesota and various other states, the Celts, Meso and Latin America, art, a nature/space/geography/history collection, poetry, philosophy, fairy tales, mythology, literature and graphic novels.  I rarely use certain collections until I find I need them, then I go deep.  That’s why I need to have them.  When I decide to get active on a topic, I don’t have time to go scouring for resources.  I like to have them at hand.