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Tag Archives: books

found poem: our books


found poem © j.i. kleinberg

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found poem: censorship


found poem © j.i. kleinberg
published in WineDrunk Sidewalk

found poem: temple

gratitude

Push Pull BooksDrew Myron, of Push Pull Books, hosts a blog series called 3 Good Books, which showcases book suggestions from her favorite writers and artists. Drew suggests the topic and the featured artist/writer selects three books that relate to the topic with a brief description of each book and why it was chosen.

It’s an honor to be on such a list and to be invited to share some thoughts on the subject of finding. Thanks to Drew, and to Barbara Manners, who took the photo. The post is here.

found poem: Shadows

more…

inside…

the library…

library checkout cardsOur small family didn’t have many cozy rituals, but the library was one. Every two weeks, for much of my childhood, the three of us would gather our stacks of books and, after a weeknight dinner, drive a couple miles to the public library. There we’d separate into our own worlds. My father would browse the long shelves of well-worn fiction, my mother would settle at a table to peruse art books and I would wander the aisles of the children’s section, running one finger along the spines of the books, waiting for some spark, some quiet call — “This one!” — before pulling a book from the shelf and examining it, deciding, selecting.

After perhaps an hour, we’d each bring our dozen books to the checkout desk and open and stack them with our library cards on top. The librarian would stamp the due date on each checkout card, slide it back into the sleeve, close the book and set it in a pile. When she set my library card on top of the pile, I knew I could take the books. Even all these decades later, the images, the smells, the sounds — the muffled scrape of chairs on the linoleum floor, the whispers, the turning pages — are as fresh as the feel of that stack of books in my arms — heavy and important and, for the next two weeks, mine.
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library checkout cards

books

bookshelvesBooks intoxicate me. They ignite an insatiable hunger, an unquenchable lust to consume, to absorb all that they contain. I crave books as objects, as places, as experiences, as evidence. I like the bright scent of fresh ink, but I can also embrace a book that is a little musty, well-used, with its turned page corners and underlinings, scrawled notes and abandoned bookmarks, its coffee rings and pencil smudges.

I am inspired by books individually and in quantity. I’m dazzled by the photos on bookshelf porn. I wish for a second story on my house solely to have a Levitate staircase.

Fiction, history, poetry, cookbooks, biography, language, design, art. I want all the books in the bookstore, in the catalogue, in the library. I want to linger over them in the cocoon of my down comforter, under a palm tree on a tropical beach, riding a train through the night. I want to read faster, understand better, recall more. I want books page by delicious page, and by osmosis: through my hands, tucked under my pillow, through the satchel gripped under my arm.

Whatever the future holds for the printed word, I am grateful to live in a time and a place that is bursting with books.

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