Bookmark #451

If I shall amass a big enough fortune in this life, and if this happens early enough for me to retain the openness of my heart and mind I revere so much, and if this happens timely enough for me to still have my wits and energy about me, I shall build a library where the coffee never runs out, and as ironic as it seems, I shall have a room there for people to engage in discussion, in conversation. I would let people argue and scream and do it myself. Indeed, reading is a private, intimate activity. Any attempt to make it social is a corruption of it. But once the reading is done, once you have read through the entire book, cover to cover, marked and folded the pages, you want to talk to someone about it. It is a disappointment like no other to read a good book, to have it engulf your actions and thoughts, and have no one ask you a single thing about what has changed within you. A gross injustice—I will fix it in my own way! A place open for all to come read, and when they’re done reading, if they so choose it, a room to rave about it.

The library, this room, will be an invitation to all artists, especially writers, to come from far and wide only to engage in the highest of forms of artistic camaraderie and rivalry alike. Sometimes, when a lot of time would pass, I would stand by the door and listen to their heated debates on philosophy, society, art and all things that affect the world. And we would build a guild of our own; from a tiny wooden room, we would start a cultural revolution. The backroom of a library that never shut its doors, they will say, that’s where it all began. Perhaps, at night, when everyone would leave, if they ever wanted to, I would clean up and sit down to write. I would look back on how once I wanted to escape, to build a cottage in the hills and never come back down. I would chuckle at how people and things change. I have not met them yet, but I know all those who join in will be my friends for life, but more importantly, legendary artists.

But before all of that, before the revolution, before the backroom, before the library, I must burn the midnight oil. A generation of artists depends on it, and truth be told, my life does too.

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