Sunday, June 24, 2007

Addiction to books

I am addicted. 1., to books -- and have been most of my life, 2., to quilt fabric -- such beautiful colors and patterns! 3., probably to bargains - too broad a subject to discuss. The book addiction played out in a fairly typical way today. I've been trying very seriously to purge my messy and overstuffed bookshelves and have had some success. Today I toted a small, wheeled suitcase full of books to the Housing Works Thrift Shop to donate suitcase and contents, about 20 books. Good! shelf space!

As I entered the door I noticed a sign: Today, all paperbacks 50 cents, all hard backs $1.00. Need I even say what happened? This particular thrift shop has good books. A lot of my books to read came from there. Well, I only spent $3.00 but that meant I cam home with five books. I'm still ahead, of course.
So here;s what I could not resist: I read an exellent review of Sven Birkert's THE GUTENBERG ELEGIES. Essays about what will become of books in an age of computeriszation. Naturally that interests me a great deal. I want to wave a flag saying, "Long Live Books". Then I found Kazuo Ishiguro's A PALE VIEW OF THE HILLS, a novel I began reading on the subway home ... lovely. A Japanese writer living in England. Author of THE REMAINS OF THE DAY which I didn't read but, sorry for the cliche, I saw the wonderful movie.

The I found Christopher Tolkein's THE RETURN OF THE SHADOW, which is a scholary presentation of papers found after his father's death that explainsthe creative process that became LORD OF THE RINGS, which I love with a serious passion. And then I found Thomas Lynch's BODIES IN MOTION AND REST and remember very glowing reviews of his meditations about, as the subtitle says, "Metaphor and Mortality.

And the fifth book? This is where irrationality rears it's ugly head. I bought (only 50 cents, remember) LOVE POEMS BY WOMEN ... which I bought from, read, and donated to that same thrift shop. But I've regretted redonating it ever since. I don't know if this is the same copy, I don't think I marked up the one I had. It's worth having for many good poems but could be only for the first one which is by Carol C. Gregory, called "Love Letter."

Dear Samson,
I put your hair
in a jar
by the pear tree
near the well.
I'm thinkin'
over what I done
and I still don't think
God gave you
all that strength
for you to kill
my people.

Love -- Delilah

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