Bibliophiliac is the space where one passionate, voracious reader reflects on books and the reading life. You will find reviews, analysis, links, and reflections on poetry and prose both in and out of the mainstream.

A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us. Franz Kafka

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Sunday Coffee: Mother's Day

I was raised by a small but powerful woman who moved through life like a minute fireball. It seemed as though Mom was always moving: she swam, skied, water-skied, played tennis and golf, and rarely sat down. My mother's "mending basket" was a family joke. Once, when I was in high school, I teased her by pulling out all the items one by one; at the bottom was a stuffed animal from when I was a toddler. Mom was not the type to sit and sew or knit.

One of the few things Mom would do sitting down was read. Weekly trips to the library were a staple of my childhood, and the one thing my parents didn't mind spending money on was a book. Both of my parents were readers, but it was probably my mother's daily reading habit that was most influential for me. Because my mother read to me every day, and because there was always a pile of library books nearby, I became a reader even before I started school. I can still remember the feeling I had when I realized that the words on the page had meaning, and that I could decipher them.

Now I am a teacher, and I have an evangelistic fervor about putting books in my students' hands. I want every one of my students to walk out of my classroom as a reader; ideally they will be in love with books. When I run into students long after graduation, I remind them to read to their children. What better gift can a mother give to her child, after love?

No comments: