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Poetry Wrap Up!

Although April is National Poetry Month the library is committed to collecting the finest poetry, as well as the finest prose, all year round. In addition, we have an annual poetry reading where we invite nationally recognized poets to read from their works. In past years the poets have travelled to Stratford to share their work or our neighboring town of Laurel Springs to read at the Whitman Stafford Farm House. Since the pandemic, however, we’ve utilized ZOOM for digital readings that are as close to in-person performances as possible. For example, this year Sham-e-Ali Nayeem, Elaine Terranova, and Eleanor Wilner graced us with their award winning poetry online. The library continues to serve the community with art, literature, and music. The library can also be considered an adventure in discovery: what new books and authors will you encounter when you walk through our doors? Please come and visit us often and celebrate the library in all its enticements and mystery.

The Library

“Most public libraries… have changed over the years from quiet sanctums”


Once the last patron has gone, the lights

snapped off, doors locked & alarmed, the library

awakens. Along the walls its silent books

resume their quiet conversations: Procopius

reveals more of The Secret History, Shakespeare

recites a sonnet, brandishing a fresh goose quill.

Tolstoy still insists “let the dead bury the dead.” Look,

mobile book-shelves desert their assigned

locations where they’ve been stuck all day

like vans in an 8 hour traffic jam. Free

to become again that bastion of quietude

the library celebrates row after row

of silent computers, vanished lines

of curmudgeons protesting overdue fines,

hordes of screaming toddlers who never listen

to stories during Story-Time. O, the library

longs for traditional peace & quiet.

Whenever some upstart announces that

the library is “incomplete until it interacts

with patrons,” it shudders, blinks its LED

lights, and dreams of an extended blackout.

--Alfred Encarnacion


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