Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Bookends (01/30/14)
TITLE: Midnight Caper
By Cheryl von Drehle
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My bookshelves display my creative flair, an easel of right brain enthusiasm rather than left brain organization. That is how I see it anyway. Apparently my collection of several hundred books disagrees. I imagine the party happened something like this:
The event started with a pair of 19th century antique brass bookends, each sculpted into a solitary monk huddled over a hefty tome, set against a backdrop of scholarly books. These bookends languished under piles of scattered poetry books, writing journals, and occasional classics. They yearned to fulfill their vocation, upholding books rather than be disappearing under their weight.
They invited the other abandoned bookends to each pick their favorite genre, organize their selections according to their unique tastes, and thereby be restored to usefulness. The books themselves wearied from lying down too long rather than standing straight, burdened with squashed covers and split seams. They enthusiastically joined the work party.
The theological reference books were proud to be claimed by the monks, who arranged these works by century first, subject next, and finally author. Their close relatives … devotional classics, apologetic works, Christian biographies and other non-fiction religious writings … were pleased to be chosen by the pewter bookends inlaid with an intricate design of a grand European cathedral.
The marble bookends shaped like Botticelli angels chose next. They gathered all the art books, arranging them according to personal preferences. They placed classic works most prominently, with questionable modern art books discretely mixed throughout to lessen their influence. They kicked the outrageous Dali off the shelf into the wastebasket.
The elaborately tooled cast iron bookends delighted in the writing books and journals. They enjoyed hours of sorting through and arguing over how best to assemble. And so it went: the poetry books were claimed by the metrical crystal bookends; the maple bookends cleverly designed into cookies devoured the cookbooks; the whimsically embossed fool’s gold bookends grabbed the novels.
Finally, the several utilitarian black metal wedges took up the task of sorting through the remaining unclaimed books. As dawn drove away the night, the bookshelves wrapped up their celebration, congratulated the bookends on throwing the best work party ever, and retreated into a glorious stillness.
I concede this might have been the work of my husband, thinking he would surprise me with his gift of order. But then I would have to thank him, which would most likely lead to another conversation challenging the cherished disorder in my life. I like my version better.
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