Sara Dixon Saves 'Leaves of Grass'
My name is Sara Dixon and I am the general reference librarian at the Wichita Public Library. I have gone ahead and chosen Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman. It was very important to me. I read it in college and I had a really great professor that got really excited about Walt Whitman. Specifically we read Song of Myself and because it's a large part of Leaves of Grass the whole book gets saved.
Because when you are 19, 20... and you're in college and you're trying to figure out who you are in life and you don't really know, you have self-image issues and Walt Whitman... Song of Myself... he really encourages...he talks about self-love a lot and how you should love yourself. And it's really important, and I think it really speaks to how important words can be.
There's a quote that I actually had etched on my iPad that's from Walt Whitman and it's "every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you." And I think that just is such a moving sentiment because we're in this together so you should love yourself, but then you give yourself to everyone else.
If we're going to save words and we're going to save something from burning, then that's what I think the sentiment that we have to hold on to is to love yourself but also love everything around you and give back as much as you can.
It's so important to be able to figure out who you are in the world and what your place is and Song of Myself really spoke to me in that way.