Eltham Library in Bloom

IMG_7225At Eltham library I have a desk to sit and write. A  librarian asks  if I might give an impromptu reading. I find myself stood in the comptuer room in front of  seven adults  ranging from twenty to sixty nine years old  plus  four care workers and three librarians  The adults were Sandra, Ravi, Paul, Charlie, Crystal  and Mark.  I remember their names because I enjoyed it so much, because something happened. Something unique. Something special.“London Bridge Is Falling Down”.  We all joined in with the singing rhyme. “Falling down IMG_7222falling down”…  except when it finished  Sandra  carried on.   It was a poem she’d remembered from another life and it took on a life of its own  and when she stopped we  blossomed into spontaneous applause. The library in bloom.  After 40 minutes  I ended on a poem  called “She Read As She Cradled”.  At the end of each verse there’s a refrain that seemed to find a better place here than ever before.   Afterwards senior assistant librarian Jane Chambers said to me  “Sandra hasn’t spoken in these sessions before” . Sandra is sixty nine years old. Once she’d read her poem she was talking from start to finish. She’s in the middle of the first row of this picture.  The last line of  each verse was  “Every mother wants a baby like you”.


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