At the Florida State University Library this week, another dumb ass shot a book. Is that what all this rage is? BOOKS? Symbolically, yes.

We are at a “use your words” moment. As we look at all the pretty pictures and cat videos, our need for sharp pointed words honed by the reading of masters has never been greater. The psychological need to express yourself and be understood is a longing so deep, it cannot be separated from anything else inside of you or me. Only our words can save us.

Books were the part of a community that raised millions of Americans, all readers. Our parents were not perfect but I remember building a jerry-rigged faith via Black Elk Speaks and Seven Story Mountain. I learned about the glory of failure from Saul Bellow. I wanted to see the world because of West with the Night and In Patagonia.

The book that took the hit earlier in the week was a religious work, fine thinking from Medieval Europe. The book above that took the hit is the King James Bible. Bullets and God are the worst kind of stupid.

I’m glad the books were there to save their keepers. I hope the keepers honored their saviors by reading them and using the words inside: Those words are just so very beautiful.

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