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LILIES, ENDINGS AND BIBLIOHABITS
There are 4 lilies in a vase in the kitchen, bold white trumpets pointing north, south, east and west; one for each direction covering every quadrant of airspace. The whole house smells like lilies, a sharp and stinging scent that gets up your nose and fills every cavity in your head with its intensity. It's strange to me that lilies are so connected with funerals, but perhaps the strength of their perfume covers a multitude of more unpleasant odors, masks decay, persuades the nose that death and beauty can coincide, if only for a short while.

Tomorrow is Epiphany, it's Twelfth Night tonight. I have taken Christmas down and begun packing it away, laying stockings and paper trees and advent calendars carefully in cardboard and bubblewrap. There is so much of it that it takes me several days to erase. A mountain of boxes marked XMAS in big black slashing marker are piled by the dining room table, awaiting their load of glitter, tinsel and stars. The tree will probably stand until evening tomorrow, though it will be bare by then, its stiff and paled branches revealed after the magic has been stripped away.

It's a weekend with no plans, just what I need. Today, a half day at work, found me driving away at midday to fetch the kids and then burrow into bed for a 2.5 hour nap, much needed. My body desires hibernation now, a gentle collapse after the mania of the holidays, a chance to shed some stress and read some books and settle like a deflated balloon, breathing quietly, speaking softly.

Last year I read 113 books, averaging 9 per month. The year before it was 110 books, and the year before that only 104. Since I don't keep track of the size of the books it's hard to say how much I really am reading wordwise or page-count-wise but I don't care about that (obviously, or I'd keep track). I find it interesting that in the past few years, since I started charting the books I read that I've been so consistent. My average books per month has stayed fairly steady no matter whether I am reading new unfamiliar books or re-reading old friends. Going back over the lists is like skimming an address book full of friends and acquaintances. Hello, good books, I think to myself, I hope I'll have a chance to visit with you again!
 lethargic
mood: lethargic
music: REM—Talk About the Passion


Comments

It's too early to pack up Christmas! I thought the Swedish Christmas Police locked you up if you took it all down before the 13th? Well, that's MY excuse for extending it all as long as I possibly can.

I love to read as well and often like to revisit a favourite book. I am on the third book for 2007 already. Which reminds me, I have a copy of that Kerstin Ekman book Blackwater we mentioned on gissa's post the other day, if you'd like to read it. It is really very good.

I've been told variously that Swedes take down Christmas either on Trettondagen (which is today) or Tjugonde Knut which is next weekend. I choose today. It's been 4 weeks, and 6 for the advent stuff; that's enough.

And thank you for the offer on the book, but I'll wait. Even though I liked the book of hers that I have (The Forest of Hours), this one didn't sound quite up my alley, and I'm trying to get my pile of books-to-read, which has been threatening to take over the house for months now, down to a more manageable level before I acquire any more. :)

I bought myself a pre-Xmas gift of white narcissus, which my nose spent most of the holidays taking in their heavenly smell.
I'm waiting for the Christmas police to show up any moment & charge me fine me big fine.

I'm taking my tree down today.
And lilies, oh lilies.. I do adore them... that smell.. that beauty. The one thing I don't like, though, is that pollen if it gets on anything cloth. I have ruined lace tablecloths and blouses with lillie pollen.

Your post moved me to look over my monthly lists of books read. Some I had forgotten, and wistfully delighted in seeing on the list. I was a recalcitrant child in Sept and Aug. With busy-ness as an excuse I didn't record my books, books on tape, and movies consumed those months. Now sad! Never again! I will always keep my lists current.

September 2019
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