It was too late to go into Hanna’s bookshop to check out The Hug by Tess Gallagher. Incidentally, Hanna’s is a bookshop I’ve thoroughly enjoyed frequenting over the years. It has a certain personal ambience, which is uplifting and important for that kind of business. I think that could be due to It being family-owned and run. I derive great satisfaction talking to staff about various books. They’re so willingly helpful in offering information that might be needed for study purposes. I don’t find that obliging personal touch with larger bookshops. Rathmines, though, is notable for its friendly community atmosphere. The layout naturally helps.
I thus hopped on an oncoming 15 bus to nearby Camden St.. From there I boarded the 122 bus, which took me straight into town. It stopped right outside Eason’s bookshop, so I decided to dash in to have a last minute look at the poem, which is on the Leaving Cert curriculum for 2013. It was bugging me too as I was wanting to know the meaning of the poem, as there was hardly any anyalsis on line to help me out.
If luck should have it, as I scrambled my way to the basement schoolbooks department and the first person I saw in the distance was my old pal, Ballbriggan Joe. He was comfortably stretched out in a chair reading away to his hearts content. I knew the shop would be shortly closing, as it was coming up to quarter to seven in the evening. So without further ado I hurriedly plonked my heavyweight shopping, which was piled up with fruit/veg of every description and an orange juice and an Ian Rankin delicious homemade barmtrack beside him and asked would he kindly mind it for me whilst I went in search of the poetry book that contained the Hug. It was not too long after that I arrived back with two relevant poetry books and gave one to Joe. We read the desired poem between us. We discussed poetry on many occasions in the past. He is a lover of Shakespeare sonnets, etc, so he was the ideal person to mull over the poem. I felt in such a hurry in wanting to fully understand the inner depths of the poem. I know that one can come to their own conclusions upon reading poetry, but that is easy for those who have been educated, not for someone like me who has had no educational background at all and needs to bounce off others and get feedback. I really enjoyed that time with Joe and came to a better understanding of the poem after reading the expert opinion on it from the book. Joe, the gentleman that he is carried my shopping to the 46a bus-stop at O’Connell St.