Conversations with the Dead – a poem about books.

Conversations with the dead


Today I was looking at my rows of shelves

Where I still have conversations with the dead.

Yesterday I was sharing a joke with Vonnegut and laughing silly,

Having sex in the woodshed with Lawrence,

Getting high with Kerouac in a Mexican Brothel

And shooting at fascists with Hemingway.

I speak to them through the years

And they communicate with me.

Their immortality speaks volumes.

Their words never die.

Their thoughts and dreams are precious.

Today I was looking at the rows of lives that line my mind and rooms,

That shared their imaginations with me,

Who advise me still, inspire and enthrall.

My life would be so much the paler without their words in my head.

I learn so much, am so moved, by my conversations with the dead.


Opher 27.4.2018



A stacked bookshelf is a sign of intelligent life. I do not know where Iā€™d be without reading. Certainly my life would be impoverished.

That bookshelf contains a million lives, millions of experiences, thoughts, people and friends. I find out how they think and feel and share a segment of their lives and they enrich mine.

There is something archaically wonderful about books. Telling stories is one of the oldest traditions of human beings. It is hardwired into our hearts.

Those authors may be no longer with us but their genius still rings true. They converse with us from the grave. Their spirit will always live.

9 thoughts on “Conversations with the Dead – a poem about books.

  1. I feel the same way about my book shelves. They also remind me of who I was when I bought some of them. We have come a long way together even though they may seem stuck on the shelf. And I will now have to move most of them.

      1. Very true and I shall move the books first! A bit apprehensive about leaving London but will have a base up north near those Pennine hills and granddaughter for when we need to return.

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