As spring settles in, there is something to say for stillness - especially for a stillness shared. Three friends in a warm living room: one on the couch, one on the floor cushion, one on the floral loveseat, all reading. Maybe the local jazz station is fading in and out on the radio or there is a record that needs to be flipped. Someone, perhaps, is making tea.
Who would you be with? What company, what authors? Which passages would you make everyone pause for, which words would you read aloud?
I like to imagine these sets: Annie Dillard, Edna O'Brien, and Edwidge Danticat. When the hour passes and everyone stands for a stretch: Gish Jen, Rosario Castellanos, and Ralph Ellison all being set down in a single stack. Different worlds in the same one. Different books, all worth their time in the sun.
Sarah J. Bofenkamp is a reader, writer, and librarian living in Palouse, Washington.