When I was in high school, I was a massive bookworm (more like novelworm). This was excellent for the depth it gave me in understanding people around especially through the works of John Steinbeck, Ayn Rand and Somerset Maugham (and yes its pronounced Maum). To this day my favourite books are still ‘Of Human Bondage – Somerset Maugham’, ‘East of Eden – John Steinbeck’ and ‘A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth’. A lot has changed since then. Having a library in school was easier than the one on campus. Because going to school everyday meant that it was in one place and easy to return and borrow books. Unfortunately, for me that habit never carried. I now read blogs but somehow still miss the years when at any given time I was immersed in two to three novels.
People pass by the William Clement’s Library everyday and many do little than glance its way. The front facade of the library is adorned with two inscriptions, one of which is the image above. The text may seem very natural for a library to proclaim but its meaning is what strikes me. Through time things fade but the oldest carriers of information (please don’t bring up cave paintings) have maintained records and views into the world we never knew. Books give us a chance to explore and relive moments etched into parchment, by those who lived them.