I saw two ternagers sitting on the floor quietly reading in the Walmart books section earlier today, and something about the sight nourished my soul in a way few things have recently. As I’m wrapped up in a throw on the couch reading a Louis L’Amour paperback, it feels good to join them in spirit tonight.
I’ve mentioned Walmart books here before, I know. I have a real fondness for books from the grocery store, from the dollar store, from Walmart. These were the books that nourished me when I was a kid. I can remember standing in the magazine aisle at Winn-Dixie, choosing a paperback or a copy of Mad magazine to read on long summer car rides. I vividly and fondly remember most of those books, even as I’ve been trained by grad school and the middle brow internet literary culture to scoff at popcorn writers in favor of important literature. These books are not a guilty pleasure, but a wholesome and sincere one.
Tonight I’m standing with the kids from Walmart alongside Milo Talon in the shadow of St. Charles Peak. It feels like a good way to end 2018.