Saturday, September 27, 2014

On the rebound from John Latta's Ashbery post - consolation for my own daily errancy. A couple of weeks ago a student asked: "How many books are you reading?" gesturing to the piles on the various desks behind me plus the several volumes lying next to my cup & register.

I began to explain & realised the further I went the worse it sounded (the old adage of "don't begin a new book until you've finished the one you're currently reading" echoing down the decades). In desperation I tried out the analogy of planes stacked before landing - which is more or less accurate.

That's pretty much how it is - on any given day I have two or three books 'in the air' as, for instance, today: Bunting's Collected, Keith Waldrop's new one (The Now Forever) and Davenport's Geography of the Imagination (for the Ruskin essay). Quite why, I'm not entirely sure: hope that they will kick start some writing? A certain quality in the day? A mood, a scent, an inkling? Or simply the comfort that comes in having some words to hand?

& who knows what the eye might alight on? This, perhaps:

My tongue is a curve in the ear

('Villon', Bunting)

A line that transforms the day.

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