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  • I've had the pleasure of visiting Pompeii and Herculaneum, and of hiking Vesuvius. Pompeii is unforgettable, at least as an outline in my head; the image most striking to me will forever be the plaster casts made from cavities in the ash, where the organic remains have long since rotted and gassified. Thus do we find a human figure sitting with its legs drawn up and its hands to its face, choking on volcanic ash and mortality. My two lingering regrets from that trip were these--first, that I di…
  • It would've been the summer after my sophomore year in college. My first major was History, and the department organized a trip. I later went to the United Kingdom with the English Literature department, which was my second major. I do recall having some fear that the Parthenon Marbles would be repatriated to Greece from the British Museum before I'd made it to London but after I'd already been to Greece. I was deep into British poetry by then and Keats remains my favorite poet. All rather self…