Saturday, 4 February 2012

Use It or Lose It

Today is an important day for we booklovers – it’s National Libraries Day.  As I last posted, I’ve visited my local library this week – have you?  I do tend to run a bit late (blame the lie-ins, a habit started from birth as I was 2 days late!) and should’ve made an effort to post about National Libraries Day earlier in the week, as a nudge to both you and I to get down there and borrow a few books...oops.  Life happens, though – so as it’s Valentine’s Day soon (another commercial nonsense, my Scrooge-self tuts – see Christmas-type postings for more of my Scrooge rants!), let’s make a date with our local library this coming week.  Because, like the independent shops on our high streets, if we don’t use them, we might lose them.
I did do my bit for National Libraries Day by pur-chasing a very snazzy tote bag from this fab all-things-literary website:  Without contravening fair trade and advertising guidelines (!), I’d recommend the Literary Gift Company – an ingenious selection of book-related products and quick delivery.  If only I had more money to spend...

50p from the fair price of £5 was donated to the National Libraries Day campaign (could it not have been a little more than 10%, my Scrooge-self asks?  Still, 10% is better than 0%...), and I used my lovely literary bag this week at the Poetry Liaisons night at my local library.

While I’m not reading a book at the moment (gasp, I hear you cry!  This is because I’m deep in writing two poems, and I find it hard to work with my own words if there’s someone else’s words wandering around in my head – but never fear, a book will make its way into my hands very soon, I’m sure!) and even though there are many, many tomes on my bookshelves waiting my attention, I am going to make a pledge.

I pledge to borrow a book from my local library once a month.

Considering I read at least 2 if not 3 books a month, that’s not bad.  This may even save me some pennies and pounds, too, ’cause I don’t have to buy the books I’ve been waiting ages to read...  Libraries really are a wonder, aren’t they?

I’ll leave you with an item that’s in the news today: poet and Waterstones (God, it kills me not to put that apostrophe in where it should go, but if that’s what the corporate bigwigs want...!) Children’s Laureate Julia Donaldson “has written a dedicated poem to celebrate National Libraries Day.”  I found it here but couldn’t resist leaving it there.  So have a read, have a think, and I’ll see you down at the library soon!

Everyone is welcome to walk through the door.
It really doesn’t matter if you’re rich or poor.
There are books in boxes and books on shelves.
They’re free for you to borrow, so help yourselves.

Come and meet your heroes, old and new,
From William the Conqueror to Winnie the Pooh.
You can look into the Mirror or read The Times,
Or bring along a toddler to chant some rhymes.

The librarian’s a friend who loves to lend,
So see if there’s a book that she can recommend.
Read that book, and if you’re bitten
You can borrow all the other ones the author’s written.

Are you into battles or biography?
Are you keen on gerbils or geography?
Gardening or ghosts? Sharks or science fiction?
There’s something here for everyone, whatever your addiction.

There are students revising, deep in concentration,
And school kids doing projects, finding inspiration.
Over in the corner there’s a table with seating,
So come along and join in the Book Club meeting.

Yes, come to the library! Browse and borrow,
And help make sure it’ll still be here tomorrow.

~ Julia Donaldson


  1. Oh no, not another site I feel I NEED to have things! lol Great post - I think we of book loving status forget that some people never go into libraries etc, it's a shame cos as we know by our own, it's so much more than just borrowing books. Love the literary site, lush bits and bobs. Love the mugs too. Zo x

  2. Hello, Debra. I've just read your curiosity letter in Wm so, being nosey, I'm peeping into your pages. I enjoyed the library poem from our laureate, it has a friendly rolling rhythm.
    Now I'm away to visit Stewart Ferris' blog pages (ref Wm p12) where he offers solutions to scriveners without inspiration. I've put off writing for weeks and weeks - either I give up and just plant spuds, or I make a start.

  3. Thanks Harry, I've just had a look at your blog too - lovely enamel art, well done!



Thanks for popping by the Pen Pot and leaving a comment - it's appreciated.