Thursday, May 29, 2008
What was taken, and what was left behind? And more importantly, why?
All the books are dumped on the floor. The books are maybe a foot or two or three deep. Maybe a couple books were taken, but the books were not the target. People didn't take the books, whether for augmenting their own libraries or to burn for heat. What is missing is the shelves. The few shelves that remain seem to be missing cross beams. And since books burn as well as wood, it would make no sense to take the sparse wood from shelving and leave he books, so I doubt the shelves were wood. I imagine, then, that the shelves were metal, and people took the metal for scrap. They left the books behind as useless, and these libraries, bereft of shelving, are simply rooms brimming waist-deep with books.
I feel a sense of loss, which is silly. They aren't mine. I can't even read them. But it feels like such a waste.
I remember running around a bonfire of burning phone books. My shadow was loose, in absolute ecstasy, tearing apart books and screaming as they burned.
I try not to let my shadow out much.
I, too, felt a sense of loss, at first. Some of the happiest moments of my childhood were spent in libraries.