BENEATH THE READING TREE
By David D. Dye Sr.
Lisa loved to read beneath her grandma's tree. She'd find a shady
space and rest a book upon her knee.
Big books, little books, books with pictures on every page: Mom and dad books with no pictures at all, and books for children of every age.
Lisa loved to look at anything from off the shelf, but her favorite kinds of books were the ones with words she could read all by herself.
Big words, little words, words that jingled with a little rhyme, and words that just sat there patiently and let her look at them for a long, long time.
Lisa loved to read beneath the reading tree. She thought it was a magic place with powers that made her feel super smart and free!
So when mother said she had to leave her special spot, her stomach started to feel like a book with jumbled up words; and her tiny face got hot!
"Summer time is over and the weather is starting to cool. You may visit your Grandma on the weekends, but now it's time for school."
Back to her city, back to her street, back to her big brick home. Back to her bedroom where she had to play alone.
Lisa loved to read beneath the summer sun, but vacation time was over and she had to pack up her books and say goodbye to all the summer fun.
Tomorrow would be her first day at Stabler Elementary, and she felt like a blank page in a dictionary without a single entry.
Could she read at all without the tree's magic leaves? Would she even know her letters and sounds or be able to recite her ABC's?
"Don't worry dear," her daddy said as he sat her on his lap.
"Reading comes from inside your heart and not from an old tree's
Lisa loved to read beneath her reading tree, but now she was in the school's parking lot feeling like a book without a cover with nowhere to flee!
Into the school, down the hallway and into her new classroom: Into a place crowded with excited kids, but her heart was still full of gloom.
Big kids, little kids, kids with freckles and funny looks, but
all of them had one thing in common; they all were reading
Her teacher, Mrs. Jenkins, said "hello" with a beautiful smile and led her through the busy room to a special reading isle.
Lisa looked around and to her wonder and surprise she saw a familiar sight and could not believe her eyes!
Her face was glowing and her smile began to bloom for a big brown paper tree stood tall in the corner of the room.
Big branches, little branches, branches like a scarecrow's crooked arm: Branches that looked just like the ones back on her grandma's farm.
The magic filled the air as Lisa found her nook and sat beneath a leafy wreath and opened up a book.
She spent the day her favorite way, with a book against her knee; a smile on her face and her confidence in place, beneath her new reading tree.
By David D. Dye Sr. © 2/2/2013