The Beautiful Changes/ In such kind ways

Most of you have likely heard by now that Richard Wilbur passed away yesterday. Wilbur is a staple of the Rome semester, and every student is assigned a poem to analyze and present. I’m not a Lit major by any means, and I’ll be the first to admit that poetry is not my forte. Still, there is such a beauty in the language that Wilbur uses that it resonates.

If you run into a quoted Wilbur in the next few days, it’s likely to be ‘The Beautiful Changes’ or ‘Love Calls us to the Things of this World.’ Over the course of the last day, my Facebook feed has flooded with fellow alums posting their favorite poem or their Rome poem. Many of Wilbur’s works are on the Poetry Foundation’s website, so I thought I’d share my Rome poem with you.

Ceremony

A striped blouse in a clearing by Bazille
Is, you may say, a patroness of boughs
Too queenly kind toward nature to be kin.
But ceremony never did conceal,
Save to the silly eye, which all allows,
How much we are the woods we wander in.
Let her be some Sabrina fresh from stream,
Lucent as shallows slowed by wading sun,
Bedded on fern, the flowers’ cynosure:
Then nymph and wood must nod and strive to dream
That she is airy earth, the trees, undone,
Must ape her languor natural and pure.
Ho-hum. I am for wit and wakefulness,
And love this feigning lady by Bazille.
What’s lightly hid is deepest understood,
And when with social smile and formal dress
She teaches leaves to curtsey and quadrille,
I think there are most tigers in the wood.
Advertisements

A Belated Happy Hobbit Day

Thursday was Hobbit Day, for those who are fans of Tolkien. This year, it struck me as somehow fitting that Hobbit Day falls on the last day of summer– the final hurrah before the world slowly spins down into winter hibernation. A fine day for a party, but usually cool enough to allow a feast fit for a hobbit’s appetite.

I mean, it should be. It was gray and rainy most of the week, though not cool– tropical storms will do that to a person. Fortunately it cleared up and was bright and warm for the Tea and Shoot today. In the meantime, we have finally started to process our acquisitions! I believe we have somewhere in the neighborhood of 80 cataloged so far, with many more to go, but its a start. Its nice to see those books lined up with spine labels and shiny new bar codes, with shiny new MARC records in the catalog to go with them.

I’ll leave you with a fun Tolkien fact for the day: last Friday was the 40th anniversary of the publication of The Silmarillion. I wish I could find it, but I remember reading somewhere that it represented one of the top ranking pre-orders the industry had seen at the time. Certainly it sold over a million copies that year. We have one:

The Start of the Semester & the NH Poetry Festival

The Start of the Semester & the NH Poetry Festival

Howdy all!

The semester, and the fall, are upon us! Welcome back to New England. The leaves aren’t quite changing– yet. There are some that have turned russet or yellow, but we mostly have green as befits our rainy summer. The humidity is leaving though, and its cool enough to spend days with the windows open, and there is loveliness in that.

We’ll be getting back to our library escapades this semester as well, but here’s a shorter note to start. Did you know that New Hampshire has a poetry festival? The New Hampshire Poetry Festival is schedule for the end of the month, Sept 23. Now, shocking as this will be for some, this particular librarian wasn’t a lit major, and so poetry isn’t exactly within my personal wheelhouse. However, it looks like this will be an interesting day with a number of different workshops and panels. Check out their site for all the details.

Link roundup

Hopefully everyone had a lovely weekend! This weekend, I tackled a few things: digging into more of our acquisitions as we prepare for more, research on how we might sell discards (more to come on that!), and clearing out the back log of blog posts and stories I’d been meaning to read.

Based on that, I found some stories I wanted to share with all of you:

  • A travelogue of Libraries in Italy, two subjects near and dear to my heart
  • 10 years ago OCLC published a report on digitization and they are highlighting that again, especially since technology changes so quickly
  • The Library of Congress has a new free to use photograph collection, this one of Roadsides in America.
  • An oldie from the Library of Congress, here are some awesome vintage travel posters that are free to use and reuse.
  • Also on the older side, a round up of good free online resources and apps
  • Did you know the New Hampshire state library is 300 years old today? They’ve been highlighting fun facts every day, but there’s a good intro piece on NHPR.
  • The digital copies of George Washington’s papers moved to a new home a few months back, in case you missed it.
  • In the spring, Library of Congress launched a new portal to all of their World War I content, especially timely since we are in the midst of the centenary.
  • So now I’m disappointed that there wasn’t a “librarian hand” class in library school. I would love to have standardized penmanship!

For fun: Guess the newest addition to the OED

For fun: Guess the newest addition to the OED

Language is, among many things, ever evolving. Also fun. I mean, you have to approach it with some fun, don’t you? How many brands of humor involve words, after all?

The Oxford English Dictionary (OED for those of us on a first name/had to haul it out of the stacks into the Cremens room basis) publishes updates once a quarter– language is ever changing after all. This quarter had a fair bit of fun in it, though, as the folks at the OED celebrated the 100th anniversary of Roald Dahl’s birth. So if you ever need to find a definition for frightsome, scrumptious, splendiferousness, or scrumdiddlyumtious, you’ll know where to go

New Congressional Record available to view

New Congressional Record available to view

For the political science nerds and those who love original source documents, this from the GPO:

The U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) partners with the Library of Congress (LC) to release the digital version of the bound Congressional Record from 1991-1998 on GPO’s govinfo. This release covers debates of the 102nd thru 105th Congresses. This era of Congress covers historical topics such as:

  • The Persian Gulf War
  • Bill Clinton’s Presidency
  • NAFTA
  • Enactment of the Family and Medical Leave Act
  • Republicans gaining control of both the House and Senate since 1954

You can read the rest of the release here, and access the records here.

The British Library’s Greek Manuscripts Project – Medieval manuscripts blog

New digital resource alert! This one is a fun one too. The British Library launched a new website with a large collection of Greek manuscripts, including the Athenian Constitution. The political science geek in me is in raptures, of course. Beyond the digital manuscripts, they have write ups and information the manuscripts and their contents. The blog entry linked below gives a general overview, and a link to the website itself. 

http://blogs.bl.uk/digitisedmanuscripts/2016/09/the-british-librarys-greek-manuscripts-project.html