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Banned Books Week

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We put the titles

On a cup

And I see books I have enjoyed

And those I could have

Lived without,

Which means discretion

Not the better part of valor

The valor is in standing up for books

With earnest stories

And a style

And all of us

Won’t like all of them

And that’s all right

That is democracy

That I hear is a fine thing

For neighborhoods and nations

And a floating planet

Wanting the approval of gravity

In the cosmos

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Banning books

Is a step

Not an easy step, I hope,

To burning books

And, you know, books of religion

Should they be read

Are the first ones to go

Books of the human spirit—well,

That might be all of them—go

Next

And we are left

Without touchstones,

The things that keep ideas for us

From slipping unanchored

Into a seastorm and the winds

Of every doctrine

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If there is beauty in a book

We should preserve it

If there is truth as well,

That’s better

(Keats is on to something)

If it’s dull, it won’t matter

In the thought

And will ban itself

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Children are not stupid

They’re not grown-up, either

There are grown-ups all around

Who must be wise

Keep matches from the books

Keep censoring away

Don’t throw everything

At everyone

Let children be children

Let them learn

Let them grow

Rethink the considerations of them

As a laborforce

For ideas

They are Cook

Without agenda

We are Endeavour

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C L Couch

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Photo by Jeremy Bezanger on Unsplash

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