Thursday, November 27, 2014

A Week of Gratitude: Red Bookshelves

I’m grateful to have grown up with these jaunty red bookshelves—the bookshelves in my father’s den, where he wrote on weekends (cursing most pithily when the carriage return of his typewriter knocked his mug of coffee off the stand, especially the second time), and went to look up words for double crostics in the big Random House dictionary that lay open at all times, offering a smorgasbord of words.  

Where the Tanqueray gin was kept for martinis, and the Christmas cookies in their festive tins, spicy gingersnaps and anise-scented biscochitos and shell-cupped Norwegian sandbakkels.  Where the poets and philosophers kept company, shouldered together on those bright red shelves, and Archy & Mehitabel, and underneath, oversized atlases—enticing colored maps that were my only contact then with foreign countries  (not knowing that I lived in one:  childhood, the most exotic and distant).

image:  Christie B. Cochrell, Red Shelves, Santa Fe

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