Welcome to The Spot Writers. This month’s prompt: a book keeps appearing out of the blue in the most unexpected and unusual places.
This week’s story comes from Chiara De Giorgi. Chiara dreams, reads, edits texts, translates, and occasionally writes in two languages. She also has a lot of fun.
by Chiara De Giorgi
I am a small booklet: just a few pages bound together, home-made style, with a blue, battered cover.
I was written by an elderly woman, who gave me to her grand-daughter. She had written her verses and thoughts on my pages, she even put in a couple of beautiful drawings.
Her grand-daughter had just moved to a country far away and was feeling bewildered and a bit dazed by the different language and habits, by all those unfamiliar faces and places. She cherished her grand-mother present, reading and re-reading the short poems and being comforted by the woman’s words.
Every time she flipped through my pages, she smiled softly to herself; she even shed a tear of two, thinking of her grand-mother. From my pages she drew the strength to face her daily challenges with a brave heart.
One day I realized she didn’t need me anymore. I was lying on her bedside table, as usual, and I watched her cuddle her newborn baby, while her husband lovingly hugged them both.
That afternoon, while we were at the park, I discretely slid from the stroller’s blanket, landing on the grass and waiting for someone to find me.
A young boy saw me and tenderly picked me up, a big smile growing on his face. He put me in his coat’s pocket and off we ran.
He wiped my cover and straightened my pages, then put me on his sister’s bed, half hidden under a giant stuffed panda bear’s foot. He watched unseen, as the little girl found me and started flipping through my pages, stopping to admire the beautiful drawings.
The little girl had just moved to a new school and was distressed because she couldn’t make new friends, nor forget her old ones. From that day on, she always brought me with her. I reminded her of her big brother, and every time she felt lonely or afraid, she just opened me, finding a poem, or a few lines in a short story, that helped her feel comfortable again.
One day I was watching her from the bench in the schoolyard: it was summer and she was playing with her school-mates, running around and laughing happily. I understood my time with her had come to an end, and let myself fall under the bench.
The old janitor found me. He picked me up and brought me home. He put me on the table while he ate a quick supper, then we went to his sister’s, all the way across the city.
His sister had recently been widowed and was feeling very sad and lonely. She was unable to sit on her husband’s favorite armchair, or to sleep on his side of the double bed. Every single object reminded her of the man she had shared so many years with, and she could only sit next to the window in the small kitchen, looking out and remembering the time gone.
She didn’t care much for me, at first, but then she decided to open me and read a few words here and there, until she started doing so every morning. One poem, one memory, one aphorism a day, I kept her company and showed her there were still thoughts to be thought and words to be spoken.
One morning she entered the kitchen humming a happy tune. She kept humming and cleaned all the house. She moved the furniture and put her husband’s armchair next to the wood stove, then she chose an old record from a pile and played it, quietly dancing by herself around the room. Her eyes were clear, her face serene, a hint of a smile stretched her lips.
The window next to me was open, and a gust of wind gently lifted me. I was flying towards my destiny again.
The Spot Writers – Our Members:
Val Muller: http://www.valmuller.com/blog/
Catherine A. MacKenzie: https://writingwicket.wordpress.com/wicker-chitter/
Phil Yeats: https://alankemisterauthor.wordpress.com
Chiara De Giorgi: https://chiaradegiorgi.blogspot.com/