Everywhere open books, book-marked books, on the floor, on the bed, on the tea-stained window ledge, on the desk, on the bedside table, in the living room. There are four chairs at the dining room table; two of them are piled with books. The Pleiade Rimbaud right here beside my computer: a month ago, after reading the Bishop-Lowell letters, I decided to see what she would think of my translations of the poems she is so distressed about in Lowell's translations (I haven't looked at these in a couple years and I think they stand up). A book of poems I reviewed; still waiting to hear back from the magazine. Je mange donc je maigris. A Perloff. Milosz's Road-Side Dog. My friend Elizabeth's new book of poems. Landscape into Art. Pleiade Baudelaire, open, face down, little green silky ribbons dangling out (hate the leatherbound, bible paper sacredness of these). Natural Mechanical. Lehman's The Last Avant-Garde and Schuyler's The Morning of the Poem (extraordinary). My French-Italian dictionary and Natalia Ginzburg's Le voci della sera (finished this last night). Harrap's Unabridged French-English Dictionary, vol.2 and HC's Ciguë. A trio of Bonnefoys. The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius (don't ask). Herbert, the Pole, Zagajewski, Brigit Pegeen Kelly. Oh, that's enough. Being horribly orderly I like to read to the end of books, even if I let my eyes skate over the pages. It distresses me, all the books I will never read. It makes me anxious, having books on my shelves I won't reread it is laughable to pretend I have read.
I nearly forgot: Perfumes: The Guide. Just got this. Number 5 has ***** and is "powdery floral." That's parfum. Eau de parfum, which has ****, is "aldehydic interrupted...it's as if Ben Hur wore a Rolex during the chariot race." Guess I'll switch to eau de toilette, also**** but "exquisitely beautiful" although it "feels slightly more ladylike than the imperishably crisp real thing," which I can't afford.