The Library will be closed Monday, April 21 in observance of Patriot's Day. We will re-open for regular hours on Tuesday, April 22.
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Life of the Library

The world at your fingertips right in your neighborhood.

Portland Public Library’s mission is to serve the Greater Portland Community by providing a diverse collection of books and other resources, with access to information resources worldwide. The library’s services support the educational, informational, and recreational interests of all community members.


Welcome To HOOPLA! Our Newest Digital Service for DOWNLOADS!

posted: , by Jim Charette
tags: Online Services | Adults | Teens | Kids & Families | Seniors | Art & Culture | News

Now you’ll be able to stream movies, tv episodes, audiobooks, and music for FREE using your PPL library card. HOOPLA is a division of Midwest Tape, a trusted name in the library world of audiotapes, movies and music.  We selected their product for ease of use and the breadth of their content.

To begin you’ll needhoopla a Portland Public Library card. Go to hoopladigital.com and:

#1 Follow their fast, easy, four-step sign-in process.

#2 If you want hoopla on the go, you can also install their free mobile app on your iOS or Android device.

That’s it! Once you sign in, you are set to begin borrowing. You can borrow up to 6 items per month and borrowing times are  21 days for an audiobook, 7 days for music, 3 days for video.

From “Guns, Germs, and Steel” to “Heidi,” from “The Big Lebowski” to “The Nuremberg Trials,” hoopla has something for everyone. Try it and let us know what you think!


National Poetry Month at PPL

posted: , by Jim Charette
tags: Library Collections | Programs & Events | Recommended Reads | Adults | Teens | Kids & Families | Seniors | Art & Culture

April is National Poetry Month—a time to celebrate poets and poetry, the beauty of language, and the richness poetry brings to the Portland Public Library and to our community. Special programming around poetry this month includes poetry you can carry in your pocket, poetry you can see on the bus (more info soon!), and poetry that you can share with others at PPL.

“Your Favorite Poem” April 23
“Your Favorite Poem” is an event for library patrons to gather and celebrate their favorite poems and poets. On Wednesday, April 23rd, bring your favorite poem by a published author to recite or read aloud in the Rines Auditorium. Come at 6:30 p.m. to sign up for a time slot, talk poetry, and enjoy refreshments. The reading of poems will take place between 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. Guidelines: One poem per reader, with a time guideline – fans of “Howl” and “Hiawatha,” please bring a short poem to share so that everyone gets a chance!

“Poem in Your Pocket” April 24
On Poem in Your Pocket Day, people throughout the United States select a poem, carry it with them, and share it with others throughout the day. On April 24 Portland Public Library is helping to promote the Poem in Your Pocket initiative by printing and handing out poems at our public desks at the Main Library. You can also share your poem selection on Twitter by using the hashtag #pplpocketpoem and #pocketpoem. Get your pocket poem at PPL on April 24—while supplies last.

And don’t forget to check out the collections of poetry at PPL!
For some ideas on getting started, take a look at a few of our staff lists for poetry. The Portland Room brings us a list of “Lesser Known Maine Poets,” City of Readers suggests “Phenomenal Women: Poets at PPL,” and Teen offers “If There Is Something to Desire: Poetry.” New books of poetry we’re looking forward to in 2014: Carolyn Forche and Duncan Wu’s anthology “Poetry of Witness;” Veteran Kevin Powers’ “Letter Composed During a Lull in the Fighting;” and a new collection of work from James Baldwin, “Jimmy’s Blues and Other Poems.”

We hope you join us in celebrating poetry this month—and hope to hear you sharing “Your Favorite Poem” at the Main Library on April 23!

By Elizabeth Hartsig


Poetry Books in the Portland Room

posted: , by Gabrielle Daniello
tags: Adults | Portland History

In honor of National Poetry Month, the Portland Room’s intrepid intern, Harper Wray Chance, has pulled together a charming exhibit of some gems from our collections. Books on display include Martin Steingesser’s Brothers of Morning and Betsy Sholl’s Rough Cradle. (Don’t miss the opportunity to hear Sholl speak about her work on April 10 at the Maine Women Writers Collection at UNE, http://www.une.edu/mwwc/conferences/authorseries.cfm)

Elizabeth Coatsworth, the well-known writer of children’s books, explores a darker side of life in the slightly sinister poems of The Creaking Stair. As she writes in the poem titled By Command, “the nightmares are waiting.” The book is illustrated by W.A. Dwiggins, an illustrator, book designer, and typographer. For this volume, he used an experimental typeface of his own design that he had not yet named.

Also on display is a book by Nathaniel Parker Willis. Willis’ father founded the early Portland newspaper, the Eastern Argus, available on microfilm in the Portland Room. Willis himself was a prolific and popular journalist, poet, and editor.

A page from Julia H. May's <em>Songs from the Woods of Maine</em> showing the poem "The Happy Hills of Strong."

A page from Julia H. May’s Songs from the Woods of Maine showing the poem “The Happy Hills of Strong.”

These and the other books in the exhibit represent just a tiny portion of what we have on the shelves of the Portland Room. We invite you to stop by, take a look, read a poem or two. While you’re here, take a look at our display of old children’s books, as well, and our ongoing display of items from the Maine Charitable Mechanic Association. The Portland Room is located on the 2nd floor – come on in! We are open Monday-Thursday 10-7 and Friday 10-6.

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