“O Me! O life!”: Celebrating Gemini Writers

May 25, 2022
︎︎︎A Good Used Book

Despite the fact that Italian medieval poet Dante Alighieri had no recorded date of birth, he was almost certainly a Gemini. After all, who else could write a timeless, silken narrative about hell, purgatory, and heaven? Who else could write, “pregnant with holy power which is the source / of all of whatever genius may be mine.” Who but a Gemini could circle the world with the eternal twins - the multitudes! - holding endless court inside of them?

Gemini authors, like Dante, have historically been the torches who light our descent into the dark… who cast the spectral shadows which dance for us and tell us stories. They are the ones who glitter and charm, trick and inspire. Their books call out like the mythical sirens they are, moving through ink and time to each of us. Dashiell Hammett, Djuna Barnes, Yasunari Kawabata, Louise Erdrich, Walt Whitman, Countee Cullen.

And if somehow all of that doesn’t sound delightful, read it again. Read Giovanni Boccaccio’s Decameron or Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring: works that find beauty hidden amongst both plague and pesticide. Watch as they orbit around Mercury, these messengers between worlds, with wings on their shoes. Follow them anywhere.