FROM THE EDITOR
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Class Notes &
Alumni News Editor
Development news editor
FROM THE EDITOR
Pen and Ink
Our lead story, about Mary Barnard’s epic translation of Sappho, posed an interesting dilemma: what image should we use on the cover? The photographs we had of Mary were not sufficiently detailed. The various artistic depictions of Sappho through the ages are exercises in pure speculation; many of them reflect the very kind of sentimentalism that Mary was trying to strip away. What about the poems themselves? Unfortunately, the surviving fragments are not particularly photogenic.
In a flash of insight, our designer, Chris Michel, suggested a hallowed Reed tradition. We asked Portland calligrapher Carol DuBosch, a student of Lloyd Reynolds, to read Mary’s translation and pick out an appropriate passage. Here is the poem she chose (the passage is highlighted).
Be kind to me
Gongyla; I ask only
Desire darts about your
and I am glad, although
“This fragment has tremendous movement, life, passion,” Carol says. “I knew how I wanted to treat it right away.” To write the passage, she selected Bone, a modern variation on the Renaissance script humanist bookhand, which was developed by Jaqueline Svaren ’50.
Jaki, who studied under Lloyd Reynolds for many years, taught the script to Carol. “The script must be written densely with the letters touching, nudging, bumping up against one another,” Carol says. “In doing so, the spaces in between the letters—we call it the counterspace—takes on a life of its own.”
Finally, to achieve the moody, enigmatic effect, Carol ran the paper under the sink! The water all but washed out the freshest ink—the last lines—but left the opening lines more or less unscathed. “I can remember Lloyd talking about Mary Barnard and Sappho,” says Carol, who took classes from Lloyd at what was then the Museum Art School (now the Pacific Northwest College of Art). “So it was a particular pleasure to pay homage to her work in this way.” As editor, it was a pleasure to see how this distinctive art form, so much a part of Reed’s heritage, could add so much depth to our magazine.
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