My reading time got cut a little short this weekend because my brother-in-law is flying in for his 50th h.s. reunion and will stay with us, so I’m housecleaning, spending 10 hours today alone. But I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and it’s good to read by.
I’m still entranced by Albert Thumb’s book on Greek and in particular by two things: he seems to have antedated William Bull by 50 years in always presenting the perfective forms as focusing EITHER on the end of an action or the BEGINNING of an action. Textbooks talk only of completed actions, but how do they explain “bark”? A dog doesn’t have to finish barking, complete barking, before we can put the verb in the past: “The dog barked last night…” says nothing about the dog stopping barking; in fact, he may still be barking, the sentence only tells us he started barking.
OTOH, if I say, “Someone closed the garage door last night….” I mean the action of closing was completed; if someone had only started to close the door, I would not be able to say someone closed it but only something like, “Someone partially closed/almost closed/pretty much closed the garage door last night.”
The other thing about Thumb is that he champions the vernacular 30 years before Triantaphyllides codified the demotiki of modern Greece. BTW, my grandson, 11, saw the book and said, “I know what vernacular means, we had it in school; it means the language of the people.” So I treated him to a discourse on the development of modern standard national languages. He loved it.
Then there is the With Rigor For All book. I’m going to read the poem on Ulysses written by a Santa Monica h.s. kid in the style of the Beats. It’s so nice to read a book that says what I’ve been doing all these years is the right thing.
I’m still reading the book on Seferis, Katsimbalis, Durrell and Miller.
I’ve also been reading Harry Potter and the Philospher’s Stone in Russian, French, and trying Urdu tough going just b/c of the script, so I’m going back to my basic Urdu books and reading, reading, reading….
The good news is my book money is secure and I’ll be able, within reason, to purchase items that strike my fancy.