1664 - Used Books

I like them dog-eared and lawnsoft,
and savor the character of winestain
and thumbsmudge,

the tear-warp between pages,
scrawl lolling down margins,

x’s, question and check marks
scratched out as anchors.

They kindle affinity with readers
who’ve leafed through before, house

a kinship of signatures, conjuring towns
and streets in states I’ll never visit.

They preach the economy of timber
and purses, while scribbled dates

evoke evenings spent couch-lounging
through past springs and winters.

Though they come off the press crisp
and unsullied, I like them used

for the gust of tinder and sawdust,
the waft of feathers adrift in a hayloft.

I turn the yellow hem of the pages,
a hue half neon, half tubercular,

like the wallpaper of a motel
nicotine-thick with confessions

where with the fray, I find repose
under covers well plumbed
and sepulchral.

(Sarah Jane Sloat)


© José Pacheco Pereira
Site Meter [Powered by Blogger]