The most interesting bookshops in the world

    I entered and the proprietor was a balding, portly man who let what was left of his hair grow too long. He had a silver mustache and a slight growth of beard on his chin which he trimmed to a point, and he looked vaguely familiar from pictures in old books.

    “What do you specialize in?” I asked him.

    He looked up from his writing. His fingertips were stained with ink and his eyes regarded me with humor.

    “O! But what manner of custom would you have?
    What words would place themselves? What honors bound
    That swirl about our heads, that in our love
    Of them, we whisper each to each, with sound
    And sudden fury! Take the best of them,
    Then pour them out! Make room in our hearts!
    Make souls that tremble fast with every gem,
    For wisdom there contains within its arts.
    But would you narrow now their purpose pleasant?
    Make them still as if through rigidity,
    Diminish them from bright wholeness to crescent.
    No, nothing here is from speciality.
    This mingled dust and leaves now seen before you
    Is of itself a wholeness mean’to restore you.”

    He stood there waiting for a response. I wasn’t sure what I wanted really but remembered the sad state my kitchen sink was in.

    “Got something on plumbing?”

    “Trade Books, 2nd floor” he said motioning upwards with his pen then resumed his writing.


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