There were few books in Cornelius Eady's household when he was growing up in Rochester, New York.
"We barely had a radio," he recalled on GLT's Sound Ideas.
The local library was his sanctuary, a "serene, welcoming place that let you wander around. It was clean, quiet. There was no chaos about it."
Eady said he scoured the library's set of encyclopedias Britannica, reading about everything from nuclear energy to the habits of squirrels. Then some lyrics he had written were published in his high school literary magazine, "and people started calling me a poet ... I didn't know what that meant."