It would be a demonstration–artistic and historically intriguing–of my blood continuing the story of people I never knew. Phaedrus (c. 15B.C.-50A.D.). A cooking pot owned by Laura Ingalls Wilder. The war helmet of a French hussar. An 1857 copy of Paradise Lost. A lesser-known painting by John William Waterhouse. A Roman denarius. Arrowheads from the Potawotamie. My computer.

I would have rows and rows of shelves of these things, in no particular order, but all neatly labeled with their personal histories, like people have written for themselves in their obituaries, written by someone else. What would a helmet say for itself? Would it remember what its head’s sweat smelled like after all those years?

And my computer. I am left with few artifacts after my death, but this might be it, the most eccentric piece in the collection of my Personal Museum.

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