You know it is fall when you no longer pray for rain, but it comes anyway and with it the chill that shakes the brown leaves from the trees and colors the rest sunset.
They do not open Barnes & Nobles in small towns. They, the men and women in clothing so black it reflects the sun away the shadows inside them, do not think country folk treat books well, but mostly it is because they say people like us have no money to spend on stories.
They are wrong.
We pool our pennies and look down among the creek beds for silver because we have often found quarters there washed down from a little girl’s broken piggy bank buried in the mud up on the mountain.
And while we often buy used books so we can read the extra stories highlighted and annotated in the margins, our chosen perfume is the only scent that cannot be washed away by sweat or rain.
It is the smell of a new book falling open.
They do not open Barnes & Nobles in small towns. They say we have no money to spend on stories. When it comes to sales’ reports, perhaps they are right, but they do not know we are the sun shining into their eyes. They are hollow shells while we are open books.
We treat books better than them because we treasure stories.
Photo by Briana Tozour