#88 The Library of Failures

by Alexander Weinstein

At the Library of Failures visitors may borrow books from the library’s extensive holdings of unfinished novels, short story collections, and abandoned chapbooks. Here one finds the works of men and women who strived to put soul on paper only to reveal inferior reproductions of their innermost visions. There are tales of lovers which capture no one’s hearts, autobiographies which strike the reader as incredibly dull, and poems which make one wish to read fiction. The Twenty-Seventh Floor houses the library’s audio collection of demo tapes, failed albums, and unsold CDs. One can listen to the songs of many unsuccessful bands, the members lined up on album covers looking disheveled and afraid. One senses their futures as waiters or baristas.

In the library’s growing collection, we instinctively feel at home. Here there is nothing to prove, no one to impress. Other libraries, full of brilliance and success, daunt us. Their towering rows reveal our own shortcomings too readily. We all strive, in our own way, to lead lives of brilliance. And yet, don’t we often find our days filled with endless moments of failure? What we discover amid the spines of the library’s holdings are artists like ourselves, extraordinary not in what they left behind, but in their substandard attempts to achieve greatness.

The library is growing daily. The city is presently seeking additional buildings for expansion. Donated works are accepted for the collection at the Central Desk Monday-Friday 9am-7pm, Weekends 9am-5pm.

1 comment:

Deb said...

I really like this and I think I have a few things to donate to that (huge) library : ) Well done!