After a month of disconnection, I quietly re-opened comments last night to see if the comment spam would start up where it had left off. Checked in the morning: nothing. Checked in the afternoon: nothing. Checked again after supper: still nothing. So I think the storm has passed. (I was getting 3,000 - 4,000 spam comments every day when I turned commenting off.)
Thanks for your patience, and glad to let the conversation resume!