Jun 25, 2008

For My Favorite Librarian

Happy 2nd Rez Day, Mr. JJ Drinkwater!

For Librarians

Imagine you can consider all ideas
And images represented by all words
And numbers in all libraries worldwide.
Open the book of this consideration.
Touch the paper. See the illustration
Of you, reading, when you were ten
In your local library. Turn
Several pages. Now read how you
And that other person ignited romance
In, of all places, the stacks, third floor,
In quite a different library. Snowflakes
Brushed against dark glass as you two
Stood between PQ and PR.

Now go to the index. Find “possibility.”
Look up from the book. The librarian
Who looks away was watching you.
She knows how to phrase the question
You want answered.

Librarians know where wisdom’s stored.
They catalogue the countless forms
Of silence and tell people what they
Didn’t know they wanted to know.
They treat the mentally fractured
As if they’re whole, the dull as if they’re
Sharp, Winter as if it’s Summer.

A band of sunlight angles through high
Windows, brightens shoes of a librarian,
Who knows the patron in the gray enormous
Coat will steal a book about sex or wiccans.
She knows some Christians will steal books
Deemed Satanic, ignoring a commandment
And the homeless person sleeping in a chair.
She knows some atheists treat Library as
Church, so when she moves into shadows,
She does so quietly. She worries for books.

For the librarian knows books are easily burned,
Recycled, or digitized, reduced to oxygen, carbon,
Silicon, and such basic elements as hate and
Budgetary cuts. She wishes presidents of
The United States would consult librarians
Before going to war. It would save so much time,
So many lives. She knows exactly which references
Know how badly any war will go and how soon
Citizens come to loathe their leaders. She knows
How to find stories about all the libraries
Wiped out by war. She knows patrons who’ve
Been harmed by war. Sometimes they set off alarms.
Someone asks her, “Can you help me find out
If I’m related to Napoleon? ” Yes, ” she answers,
“Come with me, please.”

All libraries may now gather inside invisible
Electrons. After closing time, books in Sweden
Send emails to maps in Chile. A librarian in Topeka
Posts a reply to one in Tokyo, adding to a blue thread
Wrapped around the globe.

As sincerely as librarians worry for books, for shelves,
For catalogues, buildings, and best practices,
So should we worry for librarians, for images and ideas.

At a table in a library, a circle of light
Lies on a book. The hand not writing turns
The page, and something important happens.

Hans Ostrom

*for all librarians - regardless of gender

JJ celebrated his 2nd Rez Day twice yesterday. Once during the afternoon SLT with friends from Europe and other places across the globe, and once during the evening SLT with (mostly) American-based friends. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend for a while last night. I made a private call to the gentleman and inquired as to any theme for the night. He requested Midsummers Night.

The Færie of the Red Rose

I happily complied as did many others. Still others arrived as they were when the invitation went out over the ISC. We had a lovely time in Lady Edwina's sim on Hoy. Thank you, Eds, for the hospitality.

The Rez Day boy....er...Lion dances with Miss Serra and other friends

Spiral Walcher's excellent cake

Shaunathan Sprocket

Miss Cornelia Rothschild

Hawk's eye view

Hotspur O'Toole

Gabrielle Riel

Mr. Aldo and Mrs. Betty Stern

The færie dances in the dew.

Many more happy days to you, Dear JJ. Many more!


Darien Mason said...

I wish you many more hapy rezdays, JJ, and an endless amount of new pages to turn!

Muser said...

Thanks very much for posting my poem, "For Librarians." I appreciate it. Good luck with the blog.