I flip through the pages of the New York Review of Books regularly and order titles that look promising from my local bookstore. Last week one arrived, a biography of Irish poet Seamus Heaney. It’s lovely, and reading it is taking me back in time.

I have a water-damaged paperback of selected Heaney poems on my office bookshelf. There’s an inscription on the back of the cover and a letter tucked in the middle. The letter and the water damage are related. It’s a whole story.

The magic of a book is its ability to summon other books that cast a spell over you in some earlier time. You may have forgotten about that spell, but any new book will recall it.

See? Magic.

One thought on “Magic

  1. Thank you, Rocky. Even someone else’s new book will do: Yours just brought back one of mine that’s in storage temporarily, my grandfather’s copy of “Walden” by Thoreau. There’s a note in it addressed to him — “Don’t forget this again! A friend.”

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