Monday, October 29, 2007


The Art of Maine in Winter

That's the title of a book by Carl Little and Arnold Skolnick (Down East Books 2002) - one of several of their Maine art books I turn to when I should really look at someone's painting other than my own. Winter's on my mind - today is the first truly chilly day of the year thus far, in the low thirties this morning and only up to fifty in the afternoon sun, and it was still dark when the alarm clock went off, so I'm browsing in this book this afternoon to get in the proper spirit of things (Brrr, here we go...). One of the good things about the Little/Skolnick books is that the reader gets a liberal dose of poetry and prose alongside the great illustrations. I opened the book up to this, a section of a poem entitled "The Equinox and After" by William Carpenter:

"Winter was a long novel read by kerosene
Beside the stove. It had too many heroes.
The plot was thick and lacked resolution.
The ones we loved married the wrong people,
The ones we despised prospered, the boring ones
Held forth for chapters and refused to die."

Sounds like Middlemarch to me. Which I loved. But. You know, what the poem says.

Unrelated to poetry, we stopped in at an antiques shop over the weekend - looking for chairs, not books, so naturally the only thing we bought was a book. It will remain nameless here. It's going to reside with us at home, in Ryan's collection of Maine history books. We already have a copy of this book, see, but we don't have one signed by the author, with an interesting long letter also signed by the author tucked inside the back cover. This book was on a shelf of "better" books behind the counter. It was priced at thirty bucks. The book alone is worth a hundred. Signed, with a great tls, I'd value it at five hundred. If I didn't want it at home, that is. Good to know that great deals are still out there, often in plain sight, just gotta go look. I need to take my own advice more often.

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