Most Saturdays I go to the library – either returning books and/or picking up new ones that are being held. It’s all fairly routine. My card is scanned (or my key-chain version to be precise) and the librarian goes to the cart and retrieves my book(s). Routine that is except for today. Today one of the ones I was picking up was Nox by Anne Carson. Nox comes in a thick box which is in itself unusual. So far so good. But as with most boxes, they are opened to make sure everything is there. That’s when the fun began. Upon opening, the librarian began to leaf through it. It has no binding. No glue. No staples. It’s one long sheet of pages (folded like a book). She was clucking and another librarian came over to also see the unusual book. Quite an experience.
Her poem in a box is an ode to a brother who died. Based on a handmade book that she created after his death – it’s full of collages, photos, handwritten notes. It’s the most unique publishing object I’ve seen since Flanagan’s Gould’s Book of Fish.