Get the Burro…Now!


I just found this fab new extension for Firefox called Book Burro. Once installed, the burro senses when you are viewing a book online and pops up a little sidebar that, when clicked, will tell you the current prices for the book at a number of online shops, and also tell you what public libraries own it. You have to configure the WorldCat portion of the burro with your zip code to get the libraries to display, but once that’s done…away we go!

Thanks to Liz Lawley at RIT for blogging about this one!

Punk Farm


Can I just say, this book R-O-C-K-S?!?! Jarrett Krosockzka has created a book for all the Riot Grrls out there who are now dressing their toddlers in leather and Baby Doc Martens. Jarrett K has taken the familiar standard “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” and turned it upside down and inside out with the addition of a band of punkified barnyard animals duded up in leather, sunglasses and headbands. The band takes the stage after the farmer goes to sleep, and they spend the night rockin’ the barn full of fourlegged critters. The text is spare but perfect, but it is the illustrations that make this book memorable. I especially liked the horses acting as bouncers/security. I’d certainly never mess with ’em! Cindy is going to do this one at storytime in a couple weeks and have Dave come in with all his instruments. And can I just say, was I surprised that Parma owned this book? Nope. Cathy, you ROCK, too!

Poetry Friday

There are a number of book bloggers out there who regularly post poetry on Friday, so I thought I’d join them this week.

Earlier this week, one of our patrons, Ward Worden, presented me with his new, and first, book of poetry. I’ve known Ward for a few years now, and knew that he was a sophisticated reader. He’s a gentle soul, quiet, polite, and pleasant. I had no idea he was a poet. He lost his wife a couple years ago, and I suspect that some of the poems are about her illness and death. So, for Poetry Friday readers, I present selections from Winter Robins by Ward Sheldon Worden.

Fanfare for Devon Maschke

Blow, you great pipes, shake the houses,
And the little timbrels, let them squeal with pure delight.
Your lovliest melodies, oboe, violin, I entreat you
And every tuned string, sing yourself out of sound itself,
While the double-bass beats time on the floor.

Listen now,
While ten pianos carol together.
Their silver flying chords keep on resounding
To the last faint overtone —
And then a woman’s voice — O pure contralto,
She sings of gratitude for life, for love, for both unending.

Hush now, for he must sleep,
Eyes shut in peace, with tiny fingers curled across the blanket,
Little Devon, darling of the families, in two countries.

Curled Up

Her time suspended, she’s in another time
Where space is curved– charmed beginnings, gentle endings,
Through a parade of chapters, each
With its peculiar fragrance. And everything
Is slightly out of focus except the one place. Significance reigns,
And the Moral Law, devious and disguised,
Always gets his man. She recognizes the people there,
So friendly and marvelously full of their lives.
They mostly have servants, ignore work,
And never go to the bathrooms. See how they fall in love,
Slay dragons, sacrifice themselves — all without
Leaving the plot they themselves have made.
And there’s that Other: He never leaves her side,
Liek Vergil, knowledgeable, condescending, pointing the way,
At times he’s annoying; she is never quite sure what e is up to.
She wakes,
Her finger still in the cleft where worlds collide.

The day is shot,
And there is nothing in the house to eat,
And that stain in the carpet looks different, larger now.

Things I Learned From Nancy Drew


I have long thought that the reason I am so good at games like Trivial Pursuit and Jeopardy is because I picked up so many tidbits of information from reading Nancy Drew and other series books when I was a kid. Those books were packed with esoteric information. Every now and again, I pick up a Nancy Drew or Trixie Belden or Dana Girls book and spend a couple of hours reading and reliving those lazy afternoons of reading of my youth. I did just that a couple days ago, when I curled up with The Mystery of Lilac Inn. As I read, I came to a paragraph about lilacs, in which Nancy finds a note saying something like “Meet me at midnight by the blue pipes.” Turns out “blue pipes” is another name for lilacs. Who knew?