These are the thoughts of a Texas transplant in West Michigan who makes his living as a newspaper reporter by evening, and a struggling novelist by day.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

going through the books

as we downsize our "stuff" at home for the coming adoption, one of the things i started to do was go through boxes of books.

i have a great love for books, something i acquired since i was in the fourth grade. i started collecting paperbacks a few years later and soon i had quite a collection, consisting mostly of young adult books and stephen king books.

gradually this shifted to poetry and literature books, anthologies and classics i read in college, in addition to keeping certain texts.

i don't know why i started collecting books since at 15 i couldn't read them anymore after i lost my sight. i just felt that a room or home without books is pathetic. i felt compelled to have books.

i yearn to be able to buy an encyclopedia set. i know, i know. why have those, you've got the internet. yes, but there's somethig about having an organized book, with entried in alphabetical order to look through. as a kid we had a waaaay outdated set from the early or mid-1960s. i think it was before the moon landing. i went through those books like crazy, over and over again. i couldn't help it. i learned a lot.

so i go through the books in the boxes. it's nostalgic. i look at some brownign collections, some eliot collections, my hemingways, mcmurtrys, my rivia books, my anthologies, some novels from my american lit. courses.

then i find the small nuggets, like "strange but true" book. it was given to jme by my cousin gracie when i was about 12 or so . it's a tiny paperback that will tear if handled roughly. it's not worth anything, but it's a keepsake form time's past. i find the h.p. lovecraft collections. they are more recent collections, having bought them inthe early 2000s in corpus at a bookstore. i treasure lovecraft's work. his short stories are incredible works of imagination. and there's the more recent booklet we got at a cemetery in chicago. it's a very detailed booklet with pictures and info. on the person buried there. it was a great tour of the place. many characters from "the devil and the white city" are buried there. so much history. it's like taking a step back into the 1890s.

such nostalgia and with the rain falling in the background. what a perfect setting. even my kitty is sitting atop a chair staring out an open window watching the rain and listening to it splash off of the roof. gentle, nostalgic and melancholy. beautiful in a strange way.