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From the Poetry Friday Archives: Tempest

The Prison Library

"Some people even used books to read. For education, entertainment, therapy, a way of making sense of the world. Sitting at the library's circulation desk, I saw more than one woman on the verge of tears while checking out a favorite children's book that she hadn't seen in years—Charlotte's Web or Curious George. For many in prison, childhood memories were very difficult or nonexistent."

from Running the Books: The Adventures of an Accidental Prison Librarian, by Avi Steinberg (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, 2010)

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Oh, again - I want to read this, but I am already thinking it would be hugely emotional.

I had a relative in prison and delighted in sending him mental_floss magazines, because they're just filled with all kinds of trivia and ephemera, but I never thought to send children's books... hm.

Tanita, it's heartbreaking, though wildly funny in places. Some of what I wanted to post as an excerpt was just too X-rated, language-wise. From reading the book, I'd guess women could get away with reading kids' books but guys would not.

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