Secret Poetry Room quietly opens in Bartle Library

photo of the interior of the newly opened Secret Poetry Room

Tucked away in the stacks of the Glenn G. Bartle Library at Binghamton University, a “secret poetry room” was once a distant memory of alumna Molly Peacock, ‘69. However, this secluded space, a cozy hideaway complete with a comfy chair, a small desk and a bookshelf is now a reality for Binghamton’s future poets and writers to scribe and think.

The idea behind the Secret Poetry Room is to recreate the space that Peacock remembers discovering in the heart of the library when she was a student in the 1960s. 

“It was a refuge room, so important for working class and financially challenged students who might never have had a room of their own to foster creativity,” stated Peacock on her personal website. “When I learned that the hideaway no longer exist[ed], I knew I had to work with the Binghamton University Libraries to recreate it.”

The Secret Poetry Room is now complete and ready to be enjoyed by students who seek a place to study, write or work either individually or in a small group. Study spaces, in general, are one of the more frequented service points provided by the Libraries aside from collections, librarian support and other provided resources. In 2023, Libraries’ patrons booked over 34,528 hours across the three library locations (Bartle, Science and University Downtown Center), not including the open study spaces available in the larger group reading rooms. Peacock understood the importance of investing in an individual space for thought and creativity to grow.

Alumna Molly Peacock, '69, signing a book in the newly opened Secret Poetry Room
Alumna Molly Peacock, ’69, signing a book in the newly opened Secret Poetry Room; Photo by Jonathan Cohen

“Cozy places are creative places,” said Peacock. “And what students often don’t have in public universities are just that, individual treasure box secret corners to come upon and be inspired.”

The inspiration of her own “secret poetry room” set the foundation for a fruitful career in creative writing. Graduating from then Harpur College in 1969, Peacock is an author and essayist and became co-founder of the nationally acclaimed Poetry In Motion project during the time she served as President of the Poetry Society of America. Currently living in Ontario, Canada, she hosts a consistent schedule of networking events, content specific seminars and workshops online and in-person between Toronto, Canada and in New York, NY. Molly’s newest collection, The Widow’s Crayon Box, will be published by W.W. Norton and Company this fall.

To find the Secret Poetry Room yourself, you will have to discover it on your own.
It is a secret after all! 

You can view and reserve all individual and group study spaces on the Libraries’ website.  

For more information about Molly Peacock and to see her collections in the Libraries’ archive, visit 

*** This article was edited February 29, 2024 to fix an inaccuracy. A previous version referred to the library in the 1960’s as ‘Bartle Library.’ Bartle Library opened in the fall of 1974 and was dedicated in April 1975.