...in the bottom drawer
I knew I'd lose it so I put it in a safe place, and now I can't remember where it is.

currently stashed in: Cheshire Street, London
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June 26, 2005 || 11:52 pm
Scribbling in books

Among other things at the Mockbees, I picked up a copy of Joseph Brodsky's autobiographical essays which had been Sambo's and which he had heavily annotated. I somehow always stop myself from writing in my books, somehow believing it is a bad thing and spoils them, but it was so fascinating and wonderful to read Brodsky with Sambo's commentary. It was an extraordinary glimpse into seeing his mind at work on so many levels - comments like 'R.S.' [Rural Studio] attached to little snippets of sentences, or 'and architecture' next to a comment about art. You could sense his train of thought and his preoccupations in the words he had underlined, and reading it with his notes felt like reading with him, in real-time - a strange sort of time-travel, being with a man I never could meet. The book felt so alive in my hands.

I'm not sure I can break my habit and start scrawling in my books. Somehow I always treat them as though they are slightly 'not mine' - that I am merely their steward for a while before they are lent to a friend, handed down or returned to someone else. (Though that doesn't stop me worrying the edges of the pages or destroying the binding...some Hanification is inevitable!) But I hope that many other people scribble in the margins of their books so I can have more little wormholes in which to eavesdrop on someone else's thoughts...

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