PoetryView – Little Free Libraries


Salvatore Salerno

Some are like miniature houses
Complete with windows and peaked roofs;
Others are simpler, but can be elegant
With painted or decorative whimsy,
But all have two features in common—
Theirs owners must be neighborly folks
Because they plant for others to share,
And when you open those tiny doors,
Surprising journeys of books are there.

How many free libraries thrive in Modesto?
Last summer, there were more than sixty;
Last I looked, over eighty, and by the last
Line you read here, maybe one more
Will be posted and stocked, just for you.

Perhaps Judith Krantz is on Judith Lane,
Or a used, but useful cookbook on Olive Ave.,
A Wild West novel on a street called Stetson,
Perhaps an Arctic adventure down on Frost Way,
A hiker’s manual in Canyon Oak Drive,
A spiritual volume on Aspirations Court,
A tale of wild horses on Palomino Way—
Surely, by now you are catching my drift
Of mixing random names and actual places
From the Free Little Library playlist.
I can’t guarantee you title or author,
But that’s what your own search is for.

Before browsing their shelves, check your own.
Which books, once read, are filling space
That can take the walk from your hands
Into those cozy public nooks?
As a book is a ray of knowledge and delight,
Why can’t we make new Reading Rainbows
By the light of the “take one, leave one” creed?
Ride, or better yet, take a leisurely stroll
To a little free library near your street.
Be curious, generous, give and get something—
That is what a neighborhood’s all about!

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About the Author:

Chris Murphy is the President and CEO of Sierra Pacific Warehouse Group and Publisher and Founder of ModestoView Inc. Chris worked globally in the cycling industry returning to Modesto in 1996. He is also the founder of the Modesto Historic Graffiti Cruise Route, Legends of the Cruise Walk of Fame, Modesto Rockin’ Holiday, the Modesto Music History Organization and co-founder of the Modesto Area Music Association. Chris is married to his artist wife Rebecca since 1985 and has two daughters Madison and Abigail, both graduating from Modesto High and UC Berkeley. He is lead singer and guitarist for his band, Third Party that donates their performances to non-profits.