Friday, January 28, 2011

Ethel Rohan, On Reading

Breathing Books

"I read, and the tiny diamonds in my wedding band are thrown back on the page; one, two … eight tiny stones, tiny refractions of light. I move my hand so and the brilliant reflections vanish. Move my hand again and there they are back. There, gone. There, gone. Safely in and out.

As a girl, I didn’t own jewelry, didn’t have anything but the words coming off the page, and me right there inside the story. Safely in and out. My mother called and called, chores and mending to be done, but she couldn’t get me out of the page, out of the words, out of the story. She raised the head of the sweeping brush and brought it down on my book, my lap, and first one knee, then the second knee. Her face the most terrible cover.

Something died that day. Something I’ve yet to name. Not my love for books, for sweeping floors, for my mother. All that lives on. Invincible."

Ethel Rohan is the author of the story collection, Cut Through The Bone (Dark Sky Books), and her second collection of stories, Hard To Say, will be published by PANK in 2011. Visit her here for more information.}

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