Library silence

The library sometimes pretends
it’s water and ocean,
with tempestuous phrases pouring from pages
forming rivers,
wrestling with wobble of waves
in the turbulent bay,
where the lighthouse is darker and cold.
where readers are billowing, bobbing
and drowning, stupidly stumbling
on syllables shattered from sense.
This colloquy of colleagues,
is fracturing friendships to tribes,
the violent words are wager of wars
and can only be cured by the steward,
the wielder of words,
the librarian bringing
order to maladroit chaos,
reminding that sometimes
the silence is needed when reading.

Stormy Seascape by Claude Monet

This is linked to toads, where Kim is asking us to write poems based on the word maladroit. I might have stumbled a bit out of line, but it felt that I can use it as an extended metaphor for the way we all seem to stumble with reason.

Perhaps we need the librarian to bring order in chaos.

Also linking up to Poetry Pantry
September 28, 2019

30 responses to “Library silence

  1. “step out of the line” one of the recent Emmy winners proclaimed as she accepted her prize, I am glad you did. Hoping for order among the chaos one day. I love this.

  2. silence and a true listening before speaking… maybe some of these battles, wars could be avoided or at least tempered.

  3. Words are magic–for all the good and evil that word can imply. Discernment is needed to navigate the deluge of words.

  4. My favourite character, the aged librarian, does a good job of awkwardness in the silence of the library, most librarians I know are somewhat maladroit, Björn! I love the thought of the library pretending it’s water and ocean, and the ‘tempestuous phrases pouring from pages’ and ‘wrestling with wobble of waves’ – excellent sound-play. You played around with the pace and rhythm too, especially in the lines:
    ‘… readers are billowing, bobbing
    and drowning, stupidly stumbling
    on syllables shattered from sense.’

  5. I enjoyed the alliteration in this poem. I love your aged librarian so much. He is a bit of a recluse, and i relate!

  6. This is brilliant. The library pretends it is an ocean, knowledge vast and deep and yet the readers are tossed and turned upon its pages, “drowning, stupidly” until the librarian comes to the rescue with their understanding of words and silence.

  7. Ha ha! I can see it all especially the heads bobbing and the librarian tooting that fog horn.

  8. I really like this very original work. I envision professors squabbling over scientific theories, and in so doing, losing their friendship.

  9. I love the way your librarian keeps appearing in your poems, Björn. This time he hushes all the rowdiness in the library—not only people who are talking too loudly, but also those pesky tempestuous phrases pouring from pages. Great read! Thanks!

  10. A most brilliant extended metaphor, Bjorn! ❤️ I also love the way you describe the library pretending that it’s water and ocean. 🙂

  11. Ah yes, silence IS necessary for reading. If only those who say they can read with earbuds in their ears would take note. Smiles.

  12. Oh wow! So perfectly complete and beautifully crafted. I love, love, love the ending. Stunning and wise.

  13. I like this, especially these lines,
    “with tempestuous phrases pouring from pages
    forming rivers,
    wrestling with wobble of waves
    in the turbulent bay,”
    Wonderful rhythm and visuals.

  14. Love those library visits. Your brilliant use of alliteration here, is bang on. Words are powerful … read in maladroit chaos, I shudder to think. As Alexander Pope wrote in the 1700’s: “A little learning is a dang’rous thing. Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring.” In other words, get your facts … and get them straight.

  15. Your poem made me even more stern in imagining a library extending out into a natural scenery, one involving water. I do believe silence is needed, but not from Nature; from people (or at least that is how it is for me.)

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