Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Aesthete, literato, cinephile, cosmopolite, wayfarer, inamorato

Aesthete, literato, cinephile, cosmopolite, wayfarer, inamorato, enchanted by mysteries, invigorated by rains, and waiting for you...

Impressed, enchanted by your words, in-love with your cat, and want to talk more...

I'm delighted to make your acquaintance, he said, flourishing his fedora in a low, elegant bow.... 

What shall we talk about next?
Perhaps -

Books -
Music -
Friends -
Trees -
Birds -
Films -
The night sky -
The sea -
Fire -
Skin -
Silk -
Knots -
Adventures -
Shakespeare -
Flirting -
*Serious* flirting -
Flirting with intent -
Gravity -
Levity -
Irony -
Raspberries -
Used bookstores with narrow aisles -

to start, anyway -

Used bookstores with narrow aisles


You're in Henderson's Books in Bellingham.  Rough silvery wood shelves right up to the very high ceiling, jammed with books, and piles of books that you have to edge past in the labyrinthine aisles.  The lovely scent of pine shelves, old paper and bookboard.  The light's patchy like a film noir set. Cats move.  Now and then, you hear a page turn in another aisle.  You're sitting on the bare wood floor in the poetry section; there's just enough room
to lean up against a wallful of Shakespeare with your legs folded under you, and you're looking at Mitchell's translation of Rilke's Sonnets to Orpheus.  A man comes to the poetry section, glances at what you're reading, then at you; he smiles -- just a little -- you notice his eyes are a lovely pale blue — and then he focusses on the books on the shelves. 

You keep reading. 

But you can't help noticing he's just a little closer now... and that he's looking at different translations of some Montale poems. 

And that he hasn't turned the page for quite a while.  And neither have you.

He notices you looking at him, and smiles again.  He holds out the book he's looking at, open, for you to see.  You reach up to hold the book, and your hand brushes his sleeve as you read what he shows you....

Why are you waiting?  The squirrel in the pine tree
beats its torchlike tail on the bark.
The half-moon sinks with one tip fading
into the sun.  The day is finished.

The lazy smoke is startled by a breeze
but gathers itself to cover you.
Nothing will end, or everything, if you,
the flash of lightning, leave the cloud.

                                (Eugenio Montale)

And then....

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