Still Amazed

How do I love the wireless world? Let me count the ways!

There was a week last month in which I heard from two people about the same book within a few days of each other, one from southeastern Australia and the other from eastern England. The next week I heard from a man now living in Japan whom I had last seen forty years earlier when he was growing up on Long Island and I was Rector of his parish church. He had found me on line. The world is as big a place as ever, but somehow we are no longer as far apart.

Then, yesterday, I was musing on a poem that my older sister especially loved when we were growing up in Cuba, New York. She died in an accident at least 25 years ago so I couldn’t ask her, but I remembered phrases: something about a goblin and green glass beads. I decided to do a search and tried several half-remembered phrases. The third one worked. There it was:

Nymph, nymph, what are your beads?
Green glass, goblin. Why do you stare at them?
Give them me.

There’s more, but you could look it up yourself.

Today I went to the Beinecke library at Yale to look at a scrapbook kept by an African American pastor between 1830 and 1865. They are in fragile condition, but they brought them for me to look at. And then they said, “But you can look at them on line if you want to.” Truly the day is coming when libraries will no longer be needed. We will have all the books in the world available on our laptops at home.

Maybe I shouldn’t be surprised any more. But don’t my grandchildren miss something by taking miracles for granted?

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