Like Homer, Ovid, and Dante, Patricia Storace, in her new novel The Book of Heaven, has produced a great harmonizing of myths into a single cosmic tale. Unlike these forbears, her ear is attuned to the myths outside our hearing—the ones neglected by the bards, inscribed in constellations beyond our horizon. For Epiphany today, our app Little Star Weekly brings you her variation on that journey and that arrival.
Caspar’s troupe was packing away costumes and props, and readying for its own journey onward. He had decided to take up an unexpected and opportune offer to accompany a grand court returning from a seasonal trade expedition on its celebratory journey home.
As the epic players used to do, Caspar and the players of his troupe would entertain the court as it crossed the mountains, and then to sea, to its country. If the players pleased King Melchior, there was a chance of establishing a permanent theater in his capital. His was a country of lengthy summers, which was always an advantage for actors, who were in steady demand as storytellers during the golden nights when the sun did not set.
The journey was particularly festive and the itinerant court especially brilliant. King Melchior was a gourmand of knowledge, and of art, always willing to prolong a journey or make a detour to see something of value.
Every night King Caspar’s troupe performed songs during dinner…
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Patricia Storace is the author of Dinner with Persephone, a meditation on life and reading in Greece, and Heredity, a book of poems. This story will appear next month in her new novel, The Book of Heaven. Another portion appeared in The New York Review of Books in 2007. Patricia will begin a “Month of Reading” blog on here on littlestarjournal.com this winter, the first we hope of a series.