Monday, September 04, 2017

Labor Day 2017

Patrick and I are moving to a new apartment, while our apartment is renovated. Right now I am packing books and posting on facebook as I pack:

I think I have started at the hardest place: the art books, because they are so oddly shaped and because they are full of memories: books and catalogs by my father and from the museums where I have worked. They are making me sad, though that might be due to the odd shapes.

Packing the books I feel as if I am casting off, even though this is only a temporary move to the apartment next door. So here is a casting off poem:

Casting Off

For Claribel Alegria

Her flowered hair
is casting off,
flying in pieces
over the prairie.

Oh, the perfect placement
of those fragments,
of her hands
on the guitar.


I have moved on to my Asian shelf, which is mostly Chinese. I am keeping out one book of translations of classic Chinese poetry, because you can't do something as serious as a move without classic Chinese poetry.


I am now well into the literature shelves and have reached Kenturos by Gregory Feeley. What a relief, after packing so many books that belong to my past and remind me of people no longer living. Now I find a handsome, good book by a current friend! This bodes well for the science fiction shelves, full of books by people I know and like and who are still living.


I'm finishing up literature. Next comes criticism and then politics. I won't finish politics today. After that is Iceland, science, science fiction and children's books.