The Best of Two Worlds Under One Roof
Reflections on Fair Lawn's public library
I'm not a big art fan, but I am a huge library fan.
You see, for me, there's nothing quite like a library, and I love the Maurice M. Pine Free Public Library. I love all libraries, really, but I especially love one that is unique. And, for me, this is unique.
I recently escaped the heat and ducked inside the Fair Lawn Avenue location. Anytime (for me) is a good time to be among books. I love their look, I love the smell, and I'm depressed about the demise of a physical book in favor of the Kindle, Nook–whatever the names are.
The Pine library is four levels (A, B, C & D) and a mezzanine, and a quick search revealed that it had two of my favorite books: The Heart That Would Not Hold by Joanna Johnston and Moderation Displayed by Edward Wagenknecht, both biographies of my literary hero, Washington Irving. There they were, side by side in the fiction section.
As I entered, I noticed that, on Level C, there was a square of an area with white walls where some artwork hung, and some leaned against the walls. I ascended the stairs and learned that a show was debuting. It's called "Salute to Women in the Arts: Reflections,"and runs through Oct. 29.
There are seats and a garden out front and along the side of Pine Library, courtesy of the Fair Lawn Boro Garden Committee, but I'd chosen a lone bench at the intersection of Bergen and Parmalee Avenues to sit and write down some more thoughts.
I'm a lucky guy. To call a career one in which I contribute to the wealth of the written word is the joy of all joys for me. I'm not the best writer alive, nor will I be remembered as the best (or at least one of the best) when I pass. But I know that I work hard–sometimes with as many as 12 hours strung together in a day–just like my predecessors on the shelves inside did and do. And you know what? I may be published, just like them, but the great thing about what I do is the writing itself, and I'm darn proud of that.
Take those paintings inside. Someone, many different artists, created those, maybe squinted for hours, each painting sitting for days to incubate prior to the artist returning to the palette, or perhaps they were completed in one sitting.
One day I'm going to return, this time with my family, and visit this great gallery, and even though I'm not a true art lover, enjoy the works patiently and respectively.
Each contains heart.