Today I spent the afternoon at Radford Semele school.
I felt very honoured to be invited to open their brand new library and the school had asked me to do a short speech.
A few days before the big event, I reflected on the journey they had taken;
Before the library, the school had dusty, tatty books on tiny shelves in each of the classrooms. There was never a full set in a series and books were missing pages and had scribbles on them.
The school led by the efforts and passion of the assistant head, worked so hard to get the library they all dreamed about, doing research, visiting other schools, raising funds and doing all of the work themselves. They established a proper library with books that can be checked in and out with each child having their very own library card. This system was in a room with a light breezy atmosphere, with comfy, brightly coloured bean bags and sleek shelving packed full of all types of books that would delight every reader.
Knowing that 200 children would crowd the hallways that surrounded the library entrance with a bright red ribbon waiting to be cut, I felt so inspired by the efforts of the school, the parents and the children, that instead of doing a short speech, I had written a poem, especially for them.
It is called “In This Room” and is dedicated to the determination and the hard work of all of those who brought this vision to life. Congratulations to this wonderful school, for providing such a beautiful gift for our next generation of readers and writers.
Today, just before cutting the ribbon in front of 200 cheering voices, I read the poem to them.
In This Room
In this room, gifts of fiction and fact await.
From all types of writers; some small, some great.
Browsing through the shelves, not sure which to choose.
You look at the cover and read blurb for some clues.
A book catches your eye, it promises something new.
Could this be it? The special book for you.
As the pages turn, words knit in a special weave,
And transport you to a land of make-believe.
The journey embraces you as the story is told.
Involving brave mice, wizards and knights of old.
Your imagination takes over and makes the fiction real.
As you get to know the characters and how they feel.
The plot twists, thickens and deeper you go,
You turn page after page, in the need to know.
Finally the heroes are free and all is revealed
And your love for this story is completely sealed.
The book comes to an end, but the adventure has begun,
As a whole library awaits you, after book number one.
Whether your next choice has a spaceship, dragon or broom.
It all starts again, right here.
In this room.
Written by Children’s Author
25th November 2016
Dedicated to Radford Semele and the opening of their library.