I’m not sure if it was a dream or the most intense physical act I’d ever engaged in. I couldn’t piece together how I got here. I’d been mixing liquor, always dangerous. Downed three Utica Clubs, two flying squirrels, and a Fat Elvis. Then a Screaming Orgasm, maybe. Not sure if that was a drink or that actually happened. It’s still blurry.

“Morning. Nice place. You have lots of books. And throw pillows.”
“The pillows are stuffed with paperbacks.”
“You must read a lot.”
“A room without books is a body without soul, Cicero wrote.”
“Well this is a room full of soul. I’ve been to Cicero, north of Syracuse.”
“Ha, I love your sense of humor. You pretend to be so dumb, but you have a pretty good upstairs to go with your downstairs.”

I glance to the floor, or at least to where I presume where the floor is, somewhere under the piles of books strewn about the room. It’s almost Hoarders-like. Books cover every surface, chairs, dresser, lamps, and nightstand. Not sure how we did all we did without being buried under stacks of books.

“Last book I read was Carma Sutra. Auto Erotic fiction.”
“You tickle my innards, come on, tell me, what do you like reading?”
“When I read about the evils of drinking I gave up reading. Henny Youngman said that.”
“Who’s Henny Youngman?”
“Old comedian, he said things like ‘Take my wife … please’.”
“Why’d he say that?”
“Because he was the king of one-liners.”
“Come on, who do you like to read?”
“I like Kurt Vonnegut.” It’s the first book that catches my eye.
“Yes! Did you prefer Cat’s Cradle or Slaughterhouse Five?”
“Was that the one with you or me on top?”
“Oh you, so funny with the one-liners, like Henry Jung.”
“Henny Youngman.” I elongate the pronunciation. I don’t know if I’m a good elongator. I regret correcting someone who is degrees smarter than I am, so I blurt, “And I read auto biographies, Lee Iacocca, Henry Ford, Elon Musk.”
“Any poetry?”
“I dabble.”
“Sex is the most fun you can have without smiling.”
“Is that Robert Frost or Emily Dickinson?”
“Frost or Dickinson?”
“Poets sound sexy. When you say it that way…” I thrill at the elongated Dickinson.

Poetry. We’d found poetry. In a moment, our bodies softly embrace. In between Annie Proulx and Jonathan Safran Foer, we explore desire, engage in the most intense act of physical intimacy known to mortals.

One thought on “Book Lust by Terry Rainey

  1. Terry: I wish you had 1,500 words to work with. I wanted to spend a little more time with these two before their return to physical bliss. Deeee-light—ful!

    Like

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