Words are, for some, living creatures.
They persist in being and as such they insist on being noticed. The bound and covered, silent sirens contained on the leaves between the book’s cover.
If words live, then literature can possess.
If I read and share the a sentence that crossed Plato’s eye and mind too, has time and distanced ceased?
If most celebrated literature spouts from the community of dead authors, their words become free of their original sin of the author(s) having possessed physical existence. The sentences are not devalued by the messy work of the author living his/her life at this point. The lens becomes free from the shackles of selfhood. The lines now belong to the public. There is no greater authority to which they may appeal, who will explicate their “true” meaning.