"I have always imagined that Paradise will be some kind of library." ~ Jorge Luis Borges

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Touch, The Feel of Books, the Fabric of My Life.

Apologies for the title, but it is so apt.  I am a jingle maven.  I love advertisement jingles.  They do almost what they are designed to do.  Yes, I remember them and sing them, but no, I do not often remember the actual product, so am therefore not purchasing said product because of the advertisement. Back to why we are here.

Books are the fabric of my life.

It's partly the sensory experience. It is the touch, the feel, the weight of each page as it rests between my fingers on each page turn. It is the smell of the ink, each book a bit different, as it fills the air around me.  It is the the sound of the pages as they slide through my fingers. It is the perfectly set lines fills the void in front of me.

Books are the fabric of my life.

I am bookish.  I come from bookish stock.  I am raising bookish children.  When I look back across my life, it is books that frame my thinking.

The brown burlap sack embossed with a orange book that hung on my bedroom door knob held six early start preschool readers,  a gift from my Godmother.  I remember lying on my bed reading and rereading books like Anne Likes Red and The Tent. I can remember the power of "reading" these books, whether it be the words or the pictures.

My Nutshell Library boxes transported me to small spaces and magical places where I could be alone. Slipping into a crevice between my bed and the wall, my fingers would carefully slide between the books to pull one out. Yes, I did sometimes rip the box. Note the masking tape in the photo.

Walking home from the local branch library (at the end of my street!) with a book checked out on my own card made me proud. Mrs. Watkins, the librarian, is why I left my other career and became a Teacher Librarian.  I would walk into that library and she would have a book, or one kind or another that she knew I would love. Books like Caddie Woodlawn, M.C. Higgins the Great, The Diamond in the Window, and The Dark is Rising series.  My mother and father were and are huge readers (I am from Bookish stock).  When I started reading the Dark is Rising series by Susan Cooper, the books would move from one side of the table to the other because my mother loved them just as much as I did.  

Books are the fabric of my life.

I could go on naming books and remembering when I read them, but I will not! But how can I not talk about Babies by (phew).  I will say that rereading many of these books with my own children, or watching my children read many of these same books has not diminished my own memories of reading them, but has made them richer.  

I have spent the last few months organizing the books in my house. One shelf has signed books, one shelf has first editions, one shelf has current favorites and the list goes on (a bookcase or two for every room, I say!).  My favorite shelf?  The one that holds the sometimes ratty, always well-loved books that my children loved. On those shelves are copies of my childhood books.  Seeing them on the shelf and knowing that their pages have slipped between all our fingers is magical.  Seeing them there also demonstrates the importance that books have in our lives. The touch, the feel of books, it's the fabric of our lives.

And for this I am grateful.
Every Tuesday, Ruth and Stacey, host think it is Slice of Life at their blog, Two Writing TeachersIf you want to participate, you can link up at their Slice of Life Story Post on Tuesdays or you can just head on over there to check out other people's stories. 

For more information on what a Slice of Life post is about, go here.


  1. I love this line..."Seeing them on the shelf and knowing that their pages have slipped between all our fingers is magical."

  2. I love your piece. It reminded me of all the books I loved as a child and the memories each holds for me. It is a great image… books the fabric of our lives… thank you.


  3. Books are magical. :) Thanks for sharing!