A story.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

A little something from our friend Hannah. You may remember her from her story about a Nordstrom discount. {bet you didn't know you could get those did you?} Her stories are fabulous. She kinda has a way with words and sometimes she writes words on her hands


I don’t remember learning to read. I remember learning to write the letter N. I was in Kindergarten, and it was a very exciting day because it meant, since we had been learning the letters in alphabetical order, I finally knew all three letters required to write my name. H A N N A H. But, like I said, I don’t remember learning to read.

What I do remember is my father reading to me. I remember sitting on couches or his big bed, my head on his chest, while he read aloud to me. In such a fashion we sluggishly, but pleasantly, made our way through the entire Chronicles of Narnia series. Then at night, when I was getting tucked into bed, my father would tell me stories about the characters from the series. My little brother and I always ended up going on adventures with Puddleglum the Marsh-wiggle and Reepicheep the feisty talking mouse.

My father and I also read Eragon and the first three Harry Potter books. Unfortunately for our tradition, right about the time Eldest and The Prisoner of Askaban came out, I had learned that I could get through a book faster if I read it on my own than if I listened to my father read to me. While I did manage to find out what happened to the Harry that much faster, it’s taken me years to realize what I gave up. Not every child is fortunate enough to have a father who will spend hours reading aloud to them, and I let that go without a second thought so that I could know the results of the triwizard tournament.

I give credit to my father for inspiring a love of reading. For as long as I can remember, books have been my escape, my outlet. When I was a lot younger, I threw fits all the time. I remember my mom sending me down to my room to read for thirty minutes, instead of sending me to “timeout corner” or throwing punishments at me, because reading calmed me down. I love the feeling of getting lost in a book. I would emerge, my old anger or sadness lost to the pages I had just read. I don’t think it’s an experience that can be described, but any lover of reading knows the feeling; it’s all at once calming and cleansing.

Sometimes, I go to bookstores, just because I can. Bookstores inspire me. They remind me what an exciting place the world can be, and all the interesting things I can learn. Bookstores also make me want to cry. Sometimes I look at the shelves full of books and morn the loss of all the books I’ll never read and all the things I’ll never learn. Each book represents a writer’s moment of glory: when they went from a writer to an author. Yet, in the context of thousands of books in a store, their achievement seems commonplace. They did no more than anyone else in that store, and much less than many in the store.

The day I learned to write the letter N was only the beginning. Throughout the years, I’ve learned to write the whole alphabet, words, sentences, paragraphs and even essays.  I write because it’s cleansing. My favorite quotation is from Red Smith. It reads, “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein.” The best writing comes from the veins that bleed the most honestly and the most freely.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that I believe words heal the soul.


Thanks hannah! 
harley & jane. 

1 comment:

  1. That's a really beautiful story. I'm lucky to have a Dad who used to read to me, too!

    Melanie@Unravelled Threads
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