I just finished reading The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George. If you haven’t read it yet, stop what you are doing, get a copy of the book, sit down and start reading it. Read it to savor it, like a fine wine. Yes, it will break your heart. Yes, it will frustrate you. But, oh, it will open your heart and invite you to breathe — TO BREATHE deeply — to inhale like your life depended on it, to exhale and let go of the past, to cherish the moment, in all of its unpoetic, unromantic grit. And, AND, there is even a bibliography at the end of the book!! what could be better than a work of fiction with a bibliography!! (Well, maybe a really well done new Harry Potter book, but that is another subject all together).
so, here is one of the poems that Nina George works into the story line of The Little Paris Bookshop . . .
From “The Glass Bead Game” by Hermann Hesse (Translated by Richard and Clara Winston)
As every flower fades and as all youth
Departs, so life at every stage,
So every virtue, so our grasp of truth,
Blooms in its day and may not last forever.
Since life may summon us at every age
Be ready, heart, for parting, new endeavor,
Be ready bravely and without remorse
To find new light that old ties cannot give.
In all beginnings dwells a magic force
For guarding us and helping us to live.
Serenely let us move to distant places
And let no sentiments of home detain us.
The Cosmic Spirit seeks not to restrain us
But lifts us stage by stage to wider spaces.
If we accept a home of our own making,
Familiar habit makes for indolence.
We must prepare for parting and leave-taking
Or else remain the slaves of permanence.
Even the hour of our death may send
Us speeding on to fresh and newer spaces,
And life may summon us to newer races.
So be it, heart: bid farewell without end.