There are at least three different Barnes and Noble bookstores within twenty minutes of me. I go there a lot, but I find myself buying things from them less and less. There’s a Bukowski book I’ve got my eye on, but I’m putting off buying it till the one that I already have has settled into a rhythm in my bones and I don’t have to flip through the pages to feel the poetry anymore.
They – the store, not my bones – never have anything from Simic. Which is a damn shame because people keep telling me to read him. Him and Ashbery, but reading Ashbery is kind of like slamming my head into a very intriguing brick wall.
Sometimes, me and my girlfriend go to Target, browse the paperbacks, make fun of r.h. Sin and Rupi Kaur. I think about hiding a copy or two somewhere in the greeting card section, where they won’t seem so out of place.
I went to the street I used to work on the other day and found an old bookstore. Stacks and stacks of heavily used old books written anywhere from hundreds of years ago to two-thousand-fucking-fifteen – your guess is as good as mine. Decided to pick up two small poetry collections after I read a piece I genuinely liked in each of them. Spent five bucks.
Turns out one of the authors was from Jersey too. Wrote about the strip malls on 22 in terms that me and my friends would throw around after a few drinks at our usual haunt, when things start teetering towards bittersweet nostalgia.
Funny how things work out.