Eltham Library in Bloom
At Eltham library I have a desk to sit and write. A librarian asks if I might give an impromptu reading. I find myself stood in the comptuer room in front of seven adults ranging from twenty to sixty nine years old plus four care workers and three librarians The adults were Sandra, Ravi, Paul, Charlie, Crystal and Mark. I remember their names because I enjoyed it so much, because something happened. Something unique. Something special.“London Bridge Is Falling Down”. We all joined in with the singing rhyme. "Falling down falling down"... except when it finished Sandra carried on. It was a poem she’d remembered from another life and it took on a life of its own and when she stopped we blossomed into spontaneous applause. The library in bloom. After 40 minutes I ended on a poem called “She Read As She Cradled”. At the end of each verse there's a refrain that seemed to find a better place here than ever before. Afterwards senior assistant librarian Jane Chambers said to me “Sandra hasn’t spoken in these sessions before” . Sandra is sixty nine years old. Once she'd read her poem she was talking from start to finish. She's in the middle of the first row of this picture. The last line of each verse was “Every mother wants a baby like you”.