Searching for Sylvia
Today, my beloved book store failed me.
Last night, I updated my Facebook album of “Books I’ve Read In 2011” and realized two things:
1. I’ve read 66 books this year – 65, actually, because I read Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares twice. And that means I haven’t been meeting my goal to read at least ten books a month.
2. I read like I’m a 13-year-old girl. The books I’ve read so far this year are an embarrassing mix of young adult favorites, chick lit, non-fiction, a few memoirs, crime and Justin Bieber.
And those realizations led to more realizations:
1. Fuck, I’m 30 years old. I cannot be reading like a 13-year-old.
2. Holy shit, no. I’m not 30, I’m almost 31. That’s even more embarrassing.
3. While I have a huge pile of books waiting to be read, they’re of the same variety – my trail mix of juvenile fun and sexy trash. And that leads us to number…
4. I need to buy new books.
5. I need to buy books because Sylvia Plath was 30 when she put her head in the oven and left behind Pulitzer-worthy poetry and here I am, same age as she was when she said goodbye, wasting my time, choosing to swim in marshmallow fluff.
6. I knew what I needed to do. I needed to find Sylvia Plath.
I own several of her books but I have no idea where they are. I’ve never finished any of them, her sadness always scared me. But I think I’m ready now.
And so today, I went to the book store. I dumped my laptop and bag into a cart and proceeded to check every inch of their shelves for signs of Sylvia.
There were none.
I checked everywhere. Biographies, memoirs, poetry, literature, award-winning literature, fiction, non-fiction. I found nothing. I checked children’s books, dictionaries, travel books, self-help, graphic novels, effing cook books. No Sylvia.
Not happy to be defeated and not willing to walk away empty-handed, I decided to find other books to read instead.
I walked out of the book store with The Complete Stories of Franz Kafka and The Portable Dorothy Parker.
They’re not Sylvia but Frank and Dorothy will have to do while I continue my search for Sylvia.