old books, old friends

 The days between today and the last time I read a new book is longer than I care to admit. It seems that all of my reading is done with two palms holding a phone to my face. It's not so bad when you're just seeking the sentences and their words, ones that live to move or educate you, but when you're looking for the scent of once living trees to dance against your skin and make you feel closer to a stranger who calls themselves a writer, you want to be paper back bound. I can't even bring to memory the last time I read a new book. Instead, I am always rereading the old ones I own or finding books with battered and dusty spines at the thrift store. If I go to the pub, I may order the same grub as last time, because it is good, because each time you taste it, you taste something new. I have come to know literature this very way too.

These old books, they decorate the wooden shelves the way old friends decorate our lives. If not for their stories and every tear-stain or tea spot on their pages, how could I, the one born with a bad memory, remember what secrets they told me? I can often feel myself wanting to be library bound so I can fish for new books that become old books as time wears on, but then, I look to the books I've already found and I begin to read them again. These books are my bear trap, or Amy trap if you will, they invite me in the same way constellations and milky skies invite those who camp below them. I look for the sentences I've already come to love and then I run around the house looking for somebody to read aloud to.

"I remember the last time you read this aloud, two months ago." 
"Oh, I know, but it kisses you harder each time you hear it."

What books are you reading? Any 'new' book recommendations?



  1. Do you use Goodreads at all? It helps me find new books of interest, but I also really love going to my local library and picking up something on a whim. It's a great way to find a new favorite (and I have absolutely discovered some re-readable classics to my heart) and if you find that you do not like a new book, there is nothing in the world to make you continue. Liberating, really.

    But, I do have a handful of books I have really enjoyed, and perhaps you will too.

    Euphoria by Lily King (who actually has a lot of good books)
    A Tree Grows in Brooklyn or Joy in the Morning by Betty Smith
    Trees of Heaven by Jesse Stuart
    When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi
    Winter's Bone by Daniel Woodrell
    On Canaan's Side by Barry Sebastian
    The Hour Between by Sebastian Stuart

    Really, I could go on and on, but I think you might like at least a few of these books. I am currently working on a few book related posts for my own blog if you are interested. Lots of book themed writing on the way. :)


  2. I'm trying to read The Catcher in the Rye right now, because a good friend of mine let me borrow his copy, but I really don't like it. I did just finish The Bell Jar, one of my old standbys, and I loved it more this time than the last.

  3. "But when you're looking for the scent of once living trees to dance against your skin and make you feel closer to a stranger who calls themselves a writer, you want to be paper back bound."

    I love the way you phrased this -- too true. And I'm in the same predicament as you -- I have a shelf full of books I read, and re-read. I'm even worse - I can't finish books. I'll start an old one, and then get 3/4 of the way in before starting a new one (nay, an old one!!) This has happened 2-3 times this summer alone. I'm in the struggle with you, girl.

    Beautiful words and gorgeous photo/outfit! :D

  4. Lovely post!