Where Readers Come From
(with apologies to George Ella Lyon)
Readers come from songs,
from rhyme and finger play.
They come from recitation and repetition
(all those Moo, Baa, La La La’s
and Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?)
They come from Sunday comics,
cereal boxes and read alouds
that feature character voices,
and mood lighting.
They come from independent bookstores and libraries,
from authors and librarians.
They come from
Once upon a time,
happily ever after,
“It was a dark and stormy night,” and
“There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife.”
They come from Minli, Harriet, and Ramona,
from Clementine, Omakayas, and Baby Mouse.
They come from Stanley Yelnats, Auggie Pullman, and Jackson Greene,
from Jin Wang, Octavian Nothing, and Captain Underpants.
They come from Narnia, Middle Earth, and Hogwarts,
from Panem, Redwall, and the Island of Berk.
Readers come from “It’s past your bedtime,”
with flashlights under the covers
turning page after page,
racing to the end.
Readers come from letters strung into words
and words arranged in a million different ways
into stories that leave us
gloomy or cheerful,
quiet or agitated,
exasperated or pleased,
and every human emotion in between.
Under my pillow is a well-worn book
I am from this book --
from all those that came before --
and all those yet to come.
Happy Wednesday all. See you tomorrow for another original poem.