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A Bibliophile’s Manifesto


☞ Because I feel its secret weight in my pocket or the crook of an arm

☞ Because little creatures bore and live inside it, making a home for themselves

☞ Because it smells

☞ Because I can turn it over in my hands and feel how it’s been made

☞ Because it harbours memories and the trappings of life: squashed bugs, beach sand, morsels of food, blood and hair

☞ Because it is a temple for spirits

☞ Because its battery won’t drain, no glitch can wipe it out, an accidental drop can’t crack its screen or drown it in the bath

☞ Because I can fall asleep in bed, its open pages gently spread upon my chest

☞ Because it can be personalised: handwritten inscriptions, highlighting and underlines, post-it embellishments, marginalia scrawls

☞ Because its author can sign it

☞ Because I can surround myself with them, line every room with a succession of spines

☞ Because I can enter a library and feel the world still, my heart calm

☞ Because I know where I am with it: how far I’ve been, what’s left to go, flick back and forth with ease

☞ Because it can be handed down, given or shared

☞ Because to threaten a society is to burn it

☞ Because each page is like a stained glass window: pleasing to look at, marvellous to look through, into another world

☞ Because another human touched it once, yesterday or years ago





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