Carnegie Library, Herne Hill. Is not my local library. It’s not even, the next local, local library. My friend visits the library (or should I say used to visit) every week with her daughter (who is two years old). It’s a place that means a lot to them, and they mean a lot to me. That’s why I am supporting the #savelambethlibraries campaign.
I don’t have any children. I don’t know what it’s like to give yourself up to raising another human being. I don’t know how it feels to change your life so dramatically, from one day living and doing everything for yourself to the next day thinking only about the life you’ve bought into the world. I imagine it can feel overwhelming, so overwhelming that you panic a little everyday, you feel uncertain where you once felt assured, your breath gets shorter when it was once languid and steady, your mind gets more tired when it once had the reserves to keep going, your body aches with the life it’s just grown and the energy it is expressing to keep that being alive, you are weighed down by the responsibility and the strain.
To find solace in a place where for a few hours a day or even just a week, none of these things consume who you are – must be a paradise.
Where you are welcomed by kind and reassuring faces. Where you might meet other families who are experiencing the same emotions, or older children who show you what is on the road ahead, or wise elders who smile in that knowing way that gives you hope that maybe you are doing just fine. Where the magic of the written word takes you and your baby out of the challenges of the everyday and gives your imaginations time to soar and revive. Where you can share this joy with others and exchange favourite stories, learn about new worlds, characters and cultures. Or on some days be given the space to just immerse yourself and sit, to just be.
This is a library. And this sounds like something worth fighting for.
NB this post contains some gory details about 18th Century surgical proceedures. The Old Operating Theatre is sneakily tucked behind London Bridge Station, on St Thomas’s Street. It’s somewhere I’ve wanted to visit for a few years, but have always never … Continue reading →
Muse released their latest album last year (2012) The Second Law. Having listen to the album lots of times now I find it difficult to recall my first impressions. I do remember though I had some initial reservations, as the style of the songs seemed somehow different from their usual sound (if I can say that without sounding too pretentious?). My initial reservations are now however overcome and the more I listen, the more I genuinely and vehemently appreciate each and every song. Not just in a musical sense but conceptually as well. The theme of the album comes through very strongly in each track, destruction of the earth, survival of the species ,epitomised no better perhaps than by Survival (coincidentally, or not, the official song of London 2012 Olympic Games).
Perhaps the first song to really grab my attention however was The 2nd Law – Isolated System. Primarily an instrumental track, hypnotic, beautiful and haunting all at the same time; its minimal words warning of the inevitability of earths increased entropy really captured something inside me. Though, it was whilst listening to this track on the tube during my regular week day commute that it’s significance really stood out. As I listened and looked around me I suddenly realised that the sentiments of the song were reflected back at me in the passive faces of every commuters, including myself, rushing blindly to and from work. Our blinkered and monotonous journeys, leading to jobs that perpetuated us towards the entropic end Muse captured so quintessentially in their album.
I wanted to capture what I thought was my own little epiphany so made this short film.
Shot on my iPhone, I tried to capture simply what I saw and experienced everyday on the tube, and how I felt this was reflected by the song.