I can’t throw out The Voyage
of Aeneas, the map I used
for forty of my fifty years of teaching
(until PowerPoint.) We had transparencies
and I would trace the trip in erasable
marker, from Troy, down to Perganum,
around the tip of Italy and onward, I would
remind the class of what happened at each
place, read the physical description
from John Malalas' Chronographia:
‘‘Aeneas: short, fat, with a good chest,
powerful, with a ruddy complexion,
a broad face, a good nose,
fair skin, bald on the forehead,
a good beard, grey eyes.’’
All my women students then
proclaimed Dido nuts and we went on,
toward Lavinium, the city he founded
named for his second wife. The PowerPoint
had less effect, the students drowsed. I can’t
throw out my map, companion of our voyage
although I’ll never go that way again.
© by Janet McCann.
Used with the author’s permission.