I mess around with really old art for my living (or at least the majority of it).
It's not something I think about very much. There just isn't much immediate utility to pondering the fact that somebody, some 400-500 years ago, crafted whatever it is I'm trying to give shape to, analyze, appreciate, or teach.
But occasionally I see it. Every so often I glimpse, across that gulf of steam and sweat and electricity and plague and other things- bobbleheads, fins on cars, crumpets,- the human on the other side.
And so today, Christmas Eve, as the dark rolls in, I'm reading through some Quantz. Johann Joachim was a grinch. A crabby man who enjoyed not only finding fault, but trumpeting it. But he wrote some pretty music and now, centuries and centuries later, I stand in front of my music stand and play it.
I don't wonder what he would think. I've read his diatribes. I'm a woman. I'm wearing pants. I'm musically flighty with a taste for the overwrought. He would disapprove.
And yet- there is probably no one else in this whole hill-bound, landlocked state -no one else in this wide, wild country- puzzling out this particular Quantz this particular hour. Just me and him and the dark and whatever light we can bring.