With my head still full of weekend’s noise,
I leave into a week filled with embrasure
& wheezing, coughing out plaster as old
renovation gives over to the creation
of a new space filled with bookshelves.
Forgotten lives & postulations are coming
back as bindings follow stack upon stack
to bring the ceiling close & brighten it.
All the housings & memory’s division
give clarity to events & signatures long
folded away, some tucked inside dust
jackets, others notes & bookmarks,
postcards & forgotten phone numbers.
Now the cardboard coughs them up
in remnants & scraps of the forsaken,
returned in a credence so disjoining,
though never as disjunctive as letters
that give, in tissue bond, the many
years & lives that I have reached past
to be brought back in this sitting
that is now surrounded, walled in by them,
as a library walls you in a place where
you might sit alone, fallen safe, though
with leverage for emotions to affect.
Names long unnamed have returned,
a quiet whisper in the ear, the crackle
of old paper crushed inside the deep
encyclopaedia. Pages once vanished
have now reappeared, & it is all I can do
to fend off the overwhelm, the turning
& returning all this brings to the room,
new in its veneer, with its chair, its carpet
& lacquer. All of these make for a re-focussing on the present
of rooms & books that yearn
through other days. Something now displaced
is now given back to distances, as pages
fallen open on letters pressed into the home
I gave them years ago are closed again
& hidden, for the long years to retain them.