Friday, November 5, 2010

An as$ pocket of wonder *

Sometimes I want one book. One book that fits into a pocket (ass pocket, or thigh or even jacket) that I can carry with me and pull out in case of boredom or stagnation; a book that will deliver instant wonder, instant inspiration; a book that induces reverie, reflections on beauty and time; turns me on; and provides both telescope and microscope into existence.

I have a few candidates for the position of carry-all pocket book: Robert Hass's Praise, W.S. Merwin's Shadow of Sirius, will be auditioning Charles Simic's The World Doesn't End.

It's like carrying an aesthetic Swiss Army knife, including a bottle opener because sometimes twist off inspiration just doesn't cut it.

This is a book that you have to be able to get something out of from just reading a page or two. Like with two girls napping in the back seat while wife (or husband) runs into a store. Like just stopped through the coffee shop and have 10-15 minutes to yourself.

It has to be dense, exploratory, experimental, funny, demand and reward re-reading and pondering and memorizing and maybe even reading out loud (though probably not in a mall).

Yeah, to have one book like that. One ass pocket of wonder and inspiration. A Linus Van Pelt security blanket of a book. Sometimes I think that would be pretty cool.

* Title with a nod to R.L. Burnside, whose "A*s pocket of whiskey" remains one of my all-time favorite album titles


Biscuit said...

Truth be told, I didn't care what this post was had me at "Ass Pocket Of Wonder"

Michael Valliant said...

Haha, two points for loaded titles, eh? I have loved the phrase "ass pocket of" anything since hearing R.L. Burnside's album. Completely commandeered, with much respect.