All Library locations will be closed at 1pm on Wed, Dec 24, and all day Dec 25 for Christmas. We will re-open for regular hours on Fri, Dec 26. Looking for something to read, watch, or listen to? Explore our download and streaming resources and share with friends.
Last month, 9 of us gathered to reflect on Joanna Macy’s ideas presented in the book Active Hope. We began by considering the “spiral of the work that reconnects” and the various stages, including : gratitude, honoring our pain, and seeing with new eyes. The last piece is “going forth” and we left considering our own commitments and ideas for how to bring “active hope” into our lives and our communities.
Some of the ideas for preventing or addressing burn-out that were shared included:
– Spend more time outside
– Be informed but avoid people who are cynical
– The film “A Great Green Fire” was recommended as a provocative overview of the environmental movement – it is available via MaineCat
– Engage with arts that promote social change and lift spirits
– Ask ourselves, “How can I actually, in some small way… “
– Connect in places we’re already connected, including Church, through kids, and in neighborhoods
– Engage intergenerationally – consider asking elders to play the role of a steadying force
– Have fun while making change
– Check out some other resources on this topic (here’s a booklist to start with)
Sudan. A country experiencing serious violence now, a country that endured a civil war lasting over 20 years, between 1983-2005.
Valentino Achak Deng shared his story of surviving Sudanese Civil War, refugee camp, and resettlement in the United States with acclaimed author Dave Eggers and Eggers shares the story, in novel form, with all of us in his 2006 book “What Is The What.” While the stories of the “Lost Boys” have changed over the years, “What Is The What” remains an exceptionally important cultural history, narrative of war and survival and the challenges associated with living as a refugee in the United States. Please note: “What is the What” includes vivid descriptions of war related violence and can be a painful – even traumatic – read.
Through a partnership with the Machiah Center and Maine Humanities Council, Portland Public Library welcomes Bates Anthropology Professor Elizabeth Eames to lead a facilitated conversation about the book on June 10th at 6pm. The Machiah Center has provided 25 copies of the book to be checked out and PPL also offers the book as an e-download and audiobook.
To register for the program please sign up at the Reader’s Advisory Desk on the 1st floor of Portland Public Library’s main branch, or sign up with Kim Simmons at firstname.lastname@example.org
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.