Saturday, December 10, 2011

In the Land of Libraries and Other Magical Places

The following is a true story.

Once upon a time in far away land called Scotland, the people of the lovely town of Edinburg began recieving gifts. It all started when a librarian at the Scottish Poetry Library found a tree growing from a book. A note was left that said "This is for you in support of libraries, books, words, ideas..." and was signed with the Twitter handle @ByLeavesWeLive. Next the National Library of Scotland received a coffin with a gramaphone. The librarians and the townspeople were quite curious about these new treasures and wondered at their benefactor. With no further explination the gifts continued.

A movie theater received a group of soldiers; The Scotish Storytelling Center (doesn't that sound magical in itself) received a hatching dragon; two showed up at the International Book Festival - a cup of tea with a cupcake and a small man sitting in the edge of the trees; and The Central Lending Library found a magnifying glass. These gifts were carfully displayed in the places found so that all could enjoy them. The people of Edinberg took a vote to decided if the name of the giftgiver should be revealed, if it were ever found out. The townspeople decided that the identity of the giftgiver didn't matter, in fact, they were happy not to know.

Then there was a short pause in the gifts until a librarian at the Poetry Library found a wren sitting next to a pair of gloves and a tiny hat and a note. The note explained that this would be the end of the presents, that the presentgiver had very much enjoyed being able to give these special gifts, and that there were 2 that hadn't yet been found. The Museum of Scotland found a T-Rex and the Writer's Museum found a row of homes.

The End

So this may sound like a bit of fiction, but this really did happen. An anonymous woman, left intricate pieces of art made from books in places all over the city this past year. This story warms my heart as people, places, books, and artifacts were connected. It's amazing what familiar things presented in new ways by unknown persons can do to create a little bit of magic.

To see the collection, see here, here and here (there are pictures in each story). My favorites are the tree, the wren, the T-Rex, and the man in the woods.