After a half-century career of scientific research in infrared, lasers, and human vision, Brock Meier now devotes himself to finding the incredible, untold stories of little-known people from centuries past. Written, cultural, and material history are the springboard from which he imagines engaging and powerful new stories for today. Come with him on his journeys, as his “Stories Begin Where the History Ends.”
When not writing, Brock Meier finds time to make exotic wines and experimental desserts as he listens to jazz, opera, and classical music—all while thinking about where the next story is headed.
Regardless of what he finds himself doing, Brock Meier endeavors to venture out on the keen edge of life, where Word and Spirit reveal the very reason for existence, and the purpose of it all.
Brock Meier lives in the Hill Country of Texas, where the land possess a quiet sort of beauty, running with cold, spring-fed streams, and treed with ancient, majestic cypress.
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A doomed quest of love and ambition, awash in the glories of the Nabataean Kingdom—
The young sculptor Nahor enters the fast-track of the art world in the spectacular Nabataean Kingdom of ancient Arabia (you know its capital as Petra). But secrets of his boyhood implication in the deaths of his sister and mother, and abandonment by his father, leave a dark chasm in the flint of his heart.
His ache for belonging entangles him in the allure of a dazzling songstress, and a devastating injury deals the final blow to his ambitions. His desperate quest to reclaim his ruined career compels him to the very ends of the earth, as he seeks the Shamir—a mysterious and powerful object buried beneath centuries of myth.
The price of his quest?…more than he can possibly imagine.
Nahor’s loss of family, love, profession—and even his sanity—drives him to the very edge of humanity.
Join Nahor in his perilous odyssey, and discover with him the possibility hidden within the darkest impossibility.
The Stone Cutter
Waters In the Desert series
Book Excerpt or Article
The Stone Cutter, Prologue
She was the New Atlantis—rising not from the mist and mythic waves of an ocean's dream, but springing full-blown from the flinty forehead of Earth itself. Her founders—survivors, dreamers, pirates, and poets—carved and wrested her proud monuments from solid stone.
The rock. Ah, the rock! She was the rock. The Latin-speaking foreigners from across the western sea called her Petra: The Rock. But she was not just any rock. Her Nabatu builders named her Raqmu and Reqem—The One of Many Colors; Embroidered One. Her foundations and columns glowed with ribbons and swirls of variegated hue. The colors of wine, cream, and blood banded her breast and loins. None like her had ever been seen, nor would be again.
Always roaming, never resting, these nomad Nabatu !rst found their fortune in lands of a wilder waste. They made their living traveling from hither to yon and back, crossing the endless, sandy void. On the backs of camels they hauled the stuff of luxury from whence it came, to those willing to pay a dear price. Spices from the far east, the magic of silk from yet farther, frankincense and myrrh from secret places known only to them. They grew heavy and fat from the gold they gained.
Peculiar it seems, that desert wanderers—those Nabatu, bubbling up from the sands—should invest their sweat, their fortunes, their lives, in Raqmu's dreams of solid rock, not dunes of shifting sand.
But their truest treasure lay not in frankincense and myrrh, nor the gold they garnered in hawking it to the wealthy and pious in Rome and Alexandria. Their substance of supreme value was water: liquid life in the midst of an unending, arid landscape. They learned the secrets of harvesting and harnessing every drop of the scant rain falling upon their domain. Their complex networks of capture and diversion dams, tunnels, distribution pipelines, siphons, !lters, and vast underground reservoirs turned the rock of Raqmu into a lush, well-watered garden: a paradeisos. The spectacular capital displayed an extravagance of pools, fountains, man-made waterfalls. And the kingdom flourished with the water-fed agricultural riches of fruits, grain, and wine.
Rock and water, incense and gold, silk and pearls sustained and enriched the dazzling city. Under the benevolent hand of their King Haretat—called He-Who-Loves-His-People—the city rose to ever greater heights. And their women enjoyed a freedom and power unknown by their sisters in the rest of the world. Haretat shared equal prominence with his Queen Shuqilat on coinage of the realm. And women of every status shared honor with their men.
But these Nabatu rose too successful for their own good. Among the nations around them, envy grew like noxious weeds. The political and military might of Rome lusted after the economic power that was Nabataea. The intellect and religion of the Hellenes saw a people of primitive philosophy and provincial theology, and so sought to transform the Nabataeans’ god Dushara into Dionysus, and their goddesses Uzza and Lat into Isis and Aphrodite.
In the summer fever of a barren land the desert-rose blossoms into brilliant red, only to be plucked by a wanderer passing by. The lush beauty is gathered and carried home, to brighten the spare interior of a nomad’s tent. But the next morning its colored petals wilt and fall to the rug-covered floor, to be swept out with the day’s accumulation of sand. And so, too, the days of the Nabataean kingdom were numbered.
More Articles and Excerpts by
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Linda Bennett Pennell
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