Saturday, February 17, 2018

Books, books, books ... so many books, so little time

There is a distinct advantage (if you are a bibliophile, which I am) in having a larger personal library.

That is, if you have enough books, you can reach out and grab a book at random; and when you read it, it's as if it's a brand new book .... except it's also an old friend.

You may not remember the plot, or the characters in it; but the flavor lingers on like the taste of that licorice whip you bought for a nickle back when you were a little kid at your first County Fair.

Not everybody likes old books; well, not everybody likes Licorice, either.
It happens that I like, love and enjoy both "pre-read books" and black licorice whips.

(No, I don't like that abysmal "red licorice" ... it's a contradiction in terms, like "Cool Heat" or  ....
okay, don't get me started.)                                   

Where was I?

Oh, okay.  I remember now.

If your library is sufficiently large, you can re-read a new book every day; even though you have owned it for years had read it a couple of times, a well-written novel is always a joy because every re-reading exposes you to nuances which t he author didn't emphasize so thoroughly that you missed the  essence of the way he first voiced it.

Do you skim through novels, eager to see what's written on the following page?  So do I, and so I do miss much of the heart of a literary work upon first reading.

Fortunately, I never discard a book once read ... at least, not those which I have purchased.

And I have purchased a large number of books. 

Looking into the library room (my upstairs hall) I count four book-cases and 35 banker-boxes of books.   I have learned not to go into the garage and look at the book-shelves there ... it's disheartening to realize I have left so many wonderful books unread for so many years.

But I'll get around to them, eventually; I always do.  I take a box of books from the garage shelves and replace it with a box of books from the upstairs landing. There is no "strict rotation" of books; I have a box in the garage, it goes to the hallway; then it migrates to the upstairs landing, and eventually it ends up on my nightstand where I can read myself to sleep. (Too often I end up so engrossed in an old book, I don't get much sleep.)

If you have enough books (and I do), by the time you get back to 'your favorite book' you've forgotten about it, so it's always new.

Growing old is also a boon to a bibliophile/  I can't remember what I had for breakfast yesterday, let alone the plot or the surprise ending of my favorite book.

 Every day is a new day when you grow old.


Anonymous said...

You have described a wise and thoughtful mind.

Mark said...

don't you get the "...this seems familiar" feeling?