Herewith is the other library. Or perhaps the first: it was built in 1903. It was directly across the street from the Graver Hotel, where I got my hair cut, so I visited this place often. I checked out science books and adventure stories. I don’t remember much aside from vague impressions of age and wear – creaky floors, clanking pipes, a smothering atmosphere of must and hush. But I loved it. The names above the windows were strange and mysterious, too. Shakespeare Dante Milton.

I knew the names before I knew the work, and as the years went on and I discovered each other again, it was as if they’d always been waiting for me to catch up.