Size / / /

Turning virtual pages

That exist only here

The Viking Hardbound First Edition

With orange and red letters

From 1973

The year I was born

It began with

“A screaming comes across the sky”

The edition is just as I remember

Or I can “read”

A yellowed paperback

Penguin From the '80s

Or the Deluxe edition

With its crispy clean acid-free paper

I could experience it as a Medieval text

With an Olde English font

Like a postmodern Gutenberg bible

Or I can take it in the old-fashioned way

As a rush of code

Flowing like alphabet soup

On a digital string

But it’s noticeable sub-real

Like circa 1997 CGI

My psyche rejects it as inauthentic

Because the tactile

Touch and taste

Is tinny

Faker than fake

I’ll wait around

For reality to improve

Christopher Lloyd Hellstrom is the author of The March and the forthcoming Fresh Kills and is a Doctor of Arts candidate at St. John's University. He currently works in higher education publishing and lives in Staten Island, NY, with his wife and daughter. You may reach the author at
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