Friday, March 1, 2013
A Slice of My Life
reflection... this journey... than with a combination
of three of my greatest loves: reading, children,
and writing? As a child, my love of books was
apparent. I gravitated toward the book shelf in
the basement of my childhood home. My fingers
seemed to have a mind of their own. They were
drawn to the worn books. I'd find a quiet hiding
spot, the chosen book in my hands. Run my finger
along the spine. Open the cover. Inhale and smile.
Eagerly turn the pages... my imagination taking flight.
This love of reading, which would later in elementary
school develop into a fascination with mysteries like
Nancy Drew, fantasies like The Chronicles of
Narnia, and stories of strong women like Annie Oakley, had a simple beginning: Dr. Seuss books. It was through reading books written by Dr. Seuss that I explored language and was hooked into the reading world. This love of literature is one of my favorite parts of me. As I graduated from high school, I was able to start sharing this love with my nephews and nieces. I became the favorite aunt at family get-togethers... the one who would play with them, and, I think more importantly, the one who would read to them any time they wanted. And what did I read to them? The same Dr. Seuss books I had read as a child. The love of reading and sharing with children became so important to me that I chose to become a Language Arts teacher. For twenty-two years, I've been able to expose my students to a great love, and in many, I was able to ignite that spark in them too. So here, on the eve of Theodor Seuss Geisel's birthday, is a moment in life... just a small slice... one of my favorites from years ago...
Quiet and insistent,
his voice reaches me first...
"CC, the fish book. Read the fish."
as Brett toddles to me
clutching the book
in his small hands.
"Read the fish, CC."
As soon as I sit
on the green shag carpet,
Brett plops down onto my lap.
We are a perfect fit--
his blond curls tickling my chin,
the clean smell of soap,
my arms surrounding him
as we carefully hold
the worn book.
We turn to the first page.
"This little fish..."
without looking at the words.
Instead, my eyes focus
on Brett's hands--
small, pale, soft--
holding onto the sides
of the book, then straightening
a chubby index finger
to point at a drawing
of Otto, the gold fish
who grew too much.
I drink in the murmur
of quiet voices,
the gentle rustle of paper
as Brett turns the page.