I left a stack of books for you.
Behind the counter.
I almost forgot but then saw the bag.
People have been leaving a lot of books lately, generic stuff, popular titles, newer, some brand new. Some find their way to the used book shelf, some to the borrow shelf, some are brand new and uncracked, so I put them right into stock. Some I set aside to give away – especially the Bibles.
So I lift up the bag, expecting to take a few moments to sort a bit.
And the smell hits me.
This bag is filled with old books.
Descriptive Geometry by Faunce with writing dating back to 1921.
Bleak House by Charles Dickens dating to 1925
“A tale which holdeth children from play & old men from the chimney corner.”
Black Rock: A Tale of the Selkirks by Ralph O’Connor inscribed Feb. 6, 1904 (what has happened to our penmanship, people!
The inscription is a work of art!)…
“To My Rose, Compliments of J.C. Kinison – May thy pathway be bright.”
Song of the Ages, inscribed 1916 “Mrs. E.A. Howell, Hardin, Montana”
Oliver Twist by Dickens, inscribed Dec. 19, 1826 “Ella Mae Barrett”
New Caesar with Vocabulary by Allen and Greenough, dated 1896. Latin treasure!
New School Algebra by Wentworth, dated Sept. 14, 1918 “Catholic High School Class Book”
A hymnbook – The Finest of the Wheat for Missionary and Revival Meetings & Sabbath Schools inscribed Jan. 1, 1895
The Return of Tarzan by Burroughs, “To Francis, With Best Wishes for a Merry Christmas, Gladys, 1923
Each is sniffed. Each is savored.
work of art
Fragile, fragrant treasures.
The kingdom of heaven is like a man who finds treasure hidden in a field…
Or in this case
in a blue bag.