by Lauren Teh (United Arab Emirates)
Audio: "Library," read by Lauren Teh
Soft sliding susurrations, light lift of page,
A sigh, a huff, a breath, murmurs in the murky quiet,
Rustling, shuffling, low thunder of a rolling ladder,
A blurted sentence, shhh, muffling curtain of silence.
Broken intermittently with creaks of rusted lamp joints, squealing—
Footsteps, echoing down the aisles, ricocheting off the high ceiling arches
Tuff, tuff, tuff, hush! Absorbed by fabric-bound spines, standing proud,
Lined up on infinite shelves, yawning down the literary corridor of the ages—
Clatter of a dropped pen, careless student cramming, crying indistinguishably.
The books bend close, whispering inaudibly little nothings of comfort:
Hush, hush, hush, you’re not alone.
Lauren Teh is a 15-year-old writer from Singapore. Born, raised, and currently based in Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates, Lauren is a huge bookworm and loves to write short stories, essays, and half-hatched novels with a touch of magic and a good sprinkle of wordplay shenanigans. In her poem “Library,” she attempts to recreate the quiet yet vibrant atmosphere of a library and provide some assurance to the terrified students like herself.
10/15/21, 6:17 PM
This is beautifully written! You are incredibly talented. I'm in awe.
9/23/21, 7:15 PM
The last sentence, "Hush, hush, hush, you're not alone, adds a nice ending to the poem. I like the ambiguity.
8/10/21, 3:55 PM
That was so beautiful
8/4/21, 11:01 AM
Ah Tiffany - I LOVE this piece, and the ending.. it's so powerful and incredibly moving. Well done!
8/4/21, 11:00 AM
Well done Chris! I feel like I am right there in the street.. such a beautiful use of language in this poem.
8/4/21, 10:59 AM
Ah what a beautiful piece.. I can feel the promise in this morning.. like I do on summer mornings where I live. Beautifully read too!
7/30/21, 7:24 PM
7/27/21, 6:01 PM
This is beautiful, I love your use of onomatopoeia
7/23/21, 12:22 PM
7/21/21, 3:37 PM
7/21/21, 1:23 PM
Pain and nostalgia conveyed beautifully!
7/21/21, 8:35 AM
This is an amazing poem! The mixed feelings we have when we leave our home or city we grew is beautifully portrayed