Wednesday, September 4, 2013

A Visit to the Library

The fourth floor of the campus library. Silence is the law. The only sounds are the turning of a few pages.

Yet I could hear the books screaming at me. As I walked by they flashed their golden words, like official badges, like name cards, like the skirts of flamenco dancers, trying to cause me to pause, pick them up and take them home. Like dogs at the humane society, row upon row, yapping, barking, baying, whining, pawing for someone to stop and pay attention.

I had wandered there for some time, mingling with the books like one does at a social gathering.  

This introduction was made to me, "If you have never met Sherlock Holmes, you have already wasted too much time. Take this slim volume away immediately to some sequestered safehouse and begin your involvement."* "Oh, fine!" I cried in a whisper, mentally throwing up my hands. I clapped the book onto my stack.

 From rows away I heard the Icelandic literature calling me, while golden letters on a binding caught my eye as I marched to answer the call.

I mentioned that this was a campus library, and that is the beauty of it. Shelves of classics and books about the authors. Books in French, books on language, oh what a glorious colloquy of the ancients! For now that I have my degree, I actually have time to read these books.

*The quote is from the Foreward in A Study in Scarlet and The Sign of Four, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Editor: Sandy Lesberg. Peebles Press International, New York:1975.

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