Litanies Against Dying, 21 (203.)

A twisted bravery brought me
to the innards of a bookstore,
mask full on my face
and distance galore.

I routinely add awesome-sounding books
to a list in my phone,
and with nothing new on my shelves,
the time had come.
So I left the office and
steered my wonky vehicle
to the B&N parking lot.

Sorry, local bookstores – I still love you!
I just forgot
to check you first.

I left with a thin volume of poetry
and a hulking tome of prose.
A collection, a novel,
I will love these reads – I know.

Later, I cackle to myself
as I slowly break in each spine.
I riffle the pages and listen to their music;
these works are beautiful,
and now they’re


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