I am tempted to say that I spent the morning at Neiman Marcus and came home laden with finds of the Carolina Herrera and Christian Louboutin kind. That would only be half true. I didn’t set foot in Neiman Marcus; I only came home laden with luxurious finds. Well, borrowed finds at that. I just returned from the library.
The library has not always been my personal Neiman Marcus. My earliest memory of a library (from about age four) is rather traumatic. My babysitter had taken me and her grandson to Story Hour at the quaint little storefront library on Main Street in Gage, Oklahoma. The books, cramped as they were on the musty shelves, are a mere backdrop in my memory. What stands out to me is how I got in trouble – yes, got in trouble! – for trying to help Ronnie Loomis with his finger-painting project. He told his grandmother I was treating him like a baby. So, because of the bruised ego of a four-year-old male, I avoided libraries until…Until the summer of my tenth year on this fascinating, bewildering planet. That was the summer I made it my personal mission to read every horse and dog book available in the library of the next small town in which I lived. It was the library set on a hill that was great for sledding in the winter.
Since then my library experiences have been increasingly positive. Today I came home positively ecstatic about my finds: two poetry collections (one Billy Collins, one Anne Sexton), a biography of Georgia O’Keefe (from the “Youth” section – the 60 page bio is very under appreciated by adults), and The Truman Show DVD (because I always forget that it’s on my list when my eyes glaze over at Blockbuster).
Do I regret missing out on the real Neiman Marcus? Only this: that reading Anne Sexton in the glow of a Lancome make-over would have been aptly poetic.
*Just for kicks, check out my library trip-inspired poem in the column at right.