Monday, April 06, 2015

200 on...public displays

Consider life's shop windows: all manner of lures from cheap white-flour iced buns and drowsy wasps to worn women sweating under the world’s red lights.
Consider the online window, the tablets’ and iPhones’ screens: how Zillow’s houses in the country call to me: “Come home, come home, leave the city for the black of Rustburg’s nights, shot through with stars, with the howls of hunting dogs ripping across corn fields.”
Consider window shopping: how I coveted the Bally heels in the high-end store at the top of Watford’s High Street in 1978 and bought them with my first pay packet, wore them with fishnets to work at the ink factory so I might stand before Frank who laboured within the process blue mill in shed #3; how I am always refurbishing this house, the atriums of this heart.
Consider windows we open to our lives: how we pull strings to crack blinds just enough to slice the world; on better days, we tear down the blinds, open the windows wide on everything we have inside: this is who I am; this is who he was; this is who she was. How I never knew—not really knew—any of them.

The store: Galaxie Moderne, 1225 Main St #303, Lynchburg, VA 24504.(434) 846-0077
The poem: mine…and his…and hers.

Monday, March 23, 2015

200 on…Diehards and Bookabilia

We diehards, we "I'll never read on a screen-ers,” are reading on screens: on iPhones, iPads, tablets, Kindles, Nooks: Dostoyevsky consumed on an 8” x 5” screen…in Tahoma 12pt. Poe’s Conqueror Worm scrolling down a “Hello Kitty” iPhone. 

We’re reading in the spaces in which we wait, tired magazines discarded in the recycling: we wait for medical procedures hunched over, isolated and intent, thumbs turning virtual pages, tapping links that seduce us down alleys from which we cannot find our way home.

(The cloth primer, read and soaped in the tub—our first book (My very own book!?)—moves from the supermarket shelf to the kitschy “yester year” store. We’re nostalgic, rubbing our fingers over the fabric’s printed words and pictures, remembering the roar of the tiger (“Hear Him Roar!”), the yap of the little dog in the shop window (“Woof, Woof!”). Our children wait in the backs of our cars reading Animé on impossibly thin tablets.) 

Our paraphernalia finds its way to Goodwill, to Etsy stores specializing in vintage for we have no need for bookends, for leatherette bookmarks, for the mid-century bookcase. We need earphones, links to virtual libraries, charging stations, apps, an account with iTunes. 

Diehards. Readers.