Monday, April 26, 2010

SAVE SCHOOL LIBRARIES: A poem addressed to the honorable Board of Education of the City of Los Angeles

by Carole Koneff | Library Aide – Third Street Elementary

April 23, 2010

Dear Elected School Board

sitting there today

I wish I was standing in front of you

because I have something to say.

I want to save the libraries;

I want to save the books

I want to preserve a basic need

so children can sit in nooks.


I plead on behalf of Andrew;

I plead on behalf of Kate

Who come in the library every day,

as soon as they’re through the gate!

I plead on behalf of Felix;

I plead on behalf of Reese

Who like to come in and pick up a book

in a place of sanctuary and peace!


I beg on behalf of Ella;

I beg on behalf of Mack

Who fell in love with Bill Peet

and now do not look back.

I beg on behalf of Kinder,

I read to them every week

They’re always happy to see me

and always anxious to speak.


I beg on behalf of teachers

who need to get in the door

When looking for something for STULL day

that shows a little bit more.

I implore on behalf of parents,

busy with car pools and life

Knowing their kids can get books at school

helps a bit with the strife!


I plead on behalf of “Shiloh”;

I plead on behalf of “Holes”

Books about mushrooms or dolphins,

presidents, artists or moles

I plead on behalf of “Despereaux”;

I plead on behalf of “Hoot”

I plead on behalf of the library aides

about to be given the boot!


You need to let us stay open;

you need to let someone care

So that when they come in at recess,

the books will still be there!

If the doors do not remain open,

if the doors are forced to be locked

Then millions of hungry brain cells

from life-changing words will be blocked!


I hope that you all get the message;

I hope that you will see the light

And allow us to do what we do best;

we’ll never give up the fight.


libraries shape students’ lives.

Access to books in a nice quiet place

and just about everyone thrives.


Don’t tell me about “extra” money

don’t tell me there was a choice

Library aides work really hard

but nobody gave us a voice

Don’t abandon the libraries,

don’t allow them to wither and die

Dear School Board who “hold all the cards”

please hear my desperate cry!

“At the moment that we persuade a child, any child, to cross that threshold, that magic threshold into a library,  we change their lives  forever,  for the better.    It’s an enormous force for good.”       -- Barack Obama --

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