Squirrels & Horoscopes

The way a smell can trigger memories of a place, a time…books do that for me, too.  Bring back entire mindsets, frames of reference I’ve forgotten.  So I’ve decided to start keeping a journal of books I’ve read, just the titles and the date, and maybe the place or the person I borrowed the book from.  I started the list in a tiny notebook last summer, misplaced the notebook, and just found it and re-started the project.

July 2010

The Really Short Poems of A.R. Ammons – I was living with my parents for a few months, working 5 part-time jobs, living out of my car and couch-crashing with a different friend every other night, desperately needed some short pithy poetry; some of those poems will be with me forever

New & Selected Poems (Gregory Orr) – Naomi bought it for me at one of the zillion bookstores we explored in Seattle, and I savored it slowly all summer…vivid memories of reading it on the metro and falling in love with one poem after another on the way to my first date with Jon…

The Moorchild (Eloise McGraw) – YA lit, borrowed it from Kira back in the spring, read it cuddled up cozily on a couch at the Dandelion Romp not romping while it chilly-Ohio-drizzled outside, bought my own copy and re-read it all summer

Saffy’s Angel (Hilary McKay) – YA also, heard it as a book on tape while fingerpainting with two little girls on a magical babysitting job, fell in love with the characters and checked the entire series out from the library, even wrote the author a fan letter

Cosmicomics (Italo Calvino) (my favorite author) – borrowed from David, read it by moonlight in a tent while camping in Olympic National Park, had dreams all week about sailing to the moon and dancing in the lunar craters

Slouching Toward Bethlehem & Other Essays (Joan Didion) – borrowed from Naomi the last few days I was in Seattle, read it in a park with a lookout which was an excellent people-watching spot

…On another note, I wonder if you can draw any conclusions about a person from the borrowed books stacked up in their room.  (I’m not the only one, right?  Jon says I am a squirrel with my money because I hide cash all over my room.  Am I a book-squirrel too?  Dashing around gathering up books, squirreling them away, reading bits and pieces out of half a dozen different books at the same time… It’s true that there are several books scattered in between my sheets…but I have a very big mattress, there’s plenty of room for all of us!)

Anyway.   Borrowed Books Count:
-4 (+ 2 magazines) from the more-than-significant other
-1 from the neighbor
-3 from the friend who just moved back to Bmore
-1 from the old piano teacher
-8 from the library (those count as borrowed, no?)
-2 from an ex who probably doesn’t want them back

I don’t know, I feel like I should be able to read my horoscope or something from that…!


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