Sunday, April 23, 2017

Four Hundred and FiftyThree Years Old

Sunday Morning on Channel 4, I heard that William Shakespeare would be celebrating a birthday today. He was born and died on April 23 when he was fifty-two years old. The program reminded me of my Complete Works of Shakespeare that has been on my shelves for over fifty years.
Lately, I have been decluttering and am getting rid of books from my library. Getting rid of books seems so wrong. The books were purchased because, at the time, I felt the need to buy them. Now, here I am trying to get rid of those same books that I loved. I tell myself, these books just sit on the shelf and I will probably never read them again. After reading Marie Kando's book on decluttering she advises that I should pick up a book and if it doesn't excite me or give me a feeling of happiness, I am supposed to get rid of it. Give someone else a chance to enjoy it. Libraries, thrift stores and friends are places who take books. There is also a way to resell books but it just seems like too much of a hassle.

I am not sure why I hang on to the Shakespeare book. At first I thought my grandchildren could use it when they went to school. How was I to know computers would take the place of books! Maybe when I die and someone is going through my things they will think how well read I was or someone will say, "I didn't know she read Shakespeare." They would be right. While at Regis College, I did read him but I remember I had problems understanding his writing and struggled through his plays and sonnets. After the semester on the Bard of Avon was over, the book went to my shelf and has not been touched in years!

At our monthly Book Club meeting I mentioned my dilemma and one reader said, "My daughter loves Shakespeare. She has many of his stories but would love a complete book of his works." The thought about recycling my book took another turn. My book would go someplace where it would be loved and read. The idea of giving it to the lady's daughter appealed to me and made me feel better about taking it off my shelf!

"God has given you one face,
and you make yourself another."
William Shakespeare

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