To Live Forever in a Dream
The excavations ultimately revealed a late-Roman cemetery
. . . centered around the burial chapel of what appears to be
a very important woman . . . . The most stunning artifact
. . . was a transparent blue glass bowl found next to the
woman’s body. The 1,700-year old vessel is decorated on the
outside with grapes, and vine leafs and tendrils. A Greek
inscription on the inside of the bowl instructs the owner to
‘Drink to live forever, for many years!’
–Marjan Žiberna, National Geographic, January 28, 2019
Drink to live forever, for many years—
words etched in cobalt glass, a funeral
offering, left by mourners in her grave.
The words echo between our centuries,
but in this charnel pit, there is no life.
Did she drink from it, or did she deny?