For at least a month I've been trying to find Ford Madox Ford's March of Literature. I no longer remembered if it was to look up something specific or a general desire to reread it. I was sure it was at home & even looked under the kitchen table, a last-resort effort.
Because i'm rereading Lorine Niedecker, I wanted to dip into Zukofsky's "A," which I can see—that big royal blue paperback. While I was looking everywhere in my studio for it, I was excited to find FMF's MofL. But no "A." (I did come upon Ron Silliman's Alphabet but that's not the same!) I looked last night at home, no luck. It's not next to Reznikoff. The other excellent find was behind a stack of notebooks: Diane McWhorter's Pulitzer Prize–winning Carry Me Home, which the NYPL does not have a copy of.
Yes, I could alphabetize my books by subject, & that would obviate the need to buy a second (or third...) copy as well as save oodles of time. But the great serendipity of looking for a book & finding a different one is a pleasure I wouldn't give up.