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A Gift I Seem to Have Given Myself

October 25, 2021

When I entered college in 1968 I chose for a major (of course) “English” imagining that one day I might write the Great American Novel (that day has yet to come.)  But I did invest my intellectual energy into the field, and bought a few hardcover books (text and otherwise) which were of such importance to me then, that I thought I should hang onto them.

Which brings me to tonight, when musing about the bookshelves that are the primary décor of Sky Ranch, I came upon my ancient Modern Library (the small 4-1/2”x7-1/2” edition) of “The Complete Poetry and Selected Prose of John Donne.”

And tonight I find myself laughing out loud at some of the wittier lines from his Songs and Sonnets, and heavily reflecting on some of the pithier ones from his Sermons.

That is the idea of literature.  That the words first written four hundred years ago and preserved for one person’s attention fifty years ago continue to stimulate the response for which they were first intended.

P.S.  The Donne collection is in practically mint condition, having remained unread all these years.

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