I just saw the below poem in my Boulder Public Library calendar—it’s by our elephriend, the great poetess Anne Waldman, co-founder (with Allen Ginsberg) of the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa Institute, now University.
I learned to read, myself, with many afternoons spent at the Boulder Public Library, as a child. Countless books were checked out, particularly I remember Edward Eager and many children’s books…and I remember a great matriarchal black lady who was always kind to me and my mom.
So, in keeping with my gratitude to my library, I figured many of you might be grateful to your libraries and enjoy Anne‘s poem, below. After all, the Library, in this new media and information age, plays an even more essential role in community, in literacy, and in family—particularly for those, like my mom, who aren’t well off.
An inspired education, after all, is the key to the door to the American Dream. ~ ed.
Ode To A Library Card
by Anne Waldman
Ah modest microcosm-
gateway to vast diamond worlds
An admission ticket, a permission
You are so much more satisfying
than television, and quieter
We want to unplug & sign up now!
O library card
You connect us to outer space,
ancient histories, modern too,
engrossing fiction, wild poetry
diverse languages, tantalizing cultures,
deep politics, traveling from the Jurassic along unfathomable future neural pathways
You, marvelous library card
Friend to the citizen, unlocking the universe
Endless source of panoramic knowledge
Panacea to all ignorance & ill!
hot on elephant
Elephant Journal’s Holiday Gift Guide 636 shares A letter to the Anger that refuses to Leave Me. 559 shares Waylon’s favorite Ethical Gifts. 11 shares Join: Elephant’s Winter 2017 Academy. 28 shares Trevor Noah just won my Respect. 2,558 shares Year of the Fire Rooster 2017: What to Expect. 854 shares December Forecast: Letting Go of 2016 & Leaning into 2017 with Love. 6,788 shares These Tweets (and Retweets) actually Happened. 1,384 share How to Say Goodbye to that almost-great Love. 1,591 share Why a Year of No Dating was the Best Thing I ever did for Myself. 4,333 shares