Friday, October 24, 2008

Not Just An Old Book

I just finished reading this book:
It is called Freckles by Gene Stratton Porter. I have read a lot of old books--some even older than this (not by copyright, but by publication). I love to hold the hold books, turn their thick, soft pages. If you look closely, you can see the imprint of the type. I love to think about how many people were educated, entertained, and intrigued by the book. This book is special, though. In the front cover, several previous readers are named. Among them are my great-great grandma. She was raised on the Nebraska prairie in a soddie and, after her mother passed away, raised her younger siblings while her father worked the farm.

It was also read by my great grandmother. She was a champion of genealogy. If you were from anywhere in or near Nebraska, she could tell you about your family. I attribute my love of my ancestors to her passion.

And here is a picture of my Grandma, who also read this copy of Freckles. I love her dearly. She has always been a reader and faithful diary keeper. She is a mother, above all else.

When I found out I was expecting my fourth girl, I wondered why I was sent so many women to raise. Looking through these photographs, I know why. I have been given a great mothering legacy. My people are feminine, womanly people. It is my turn to pass it on.
As I read, I imagined their work-hardened hands turning the worn out pages, I imagined them young and falling in love, I imagined them wondering about the same passages I wondered about. Reading this old book, I connected with my grandmothers in an intangible, priceless way.

1 comment:

  1. What a beautiful book, a beautiful legacy and a BEAUTIFUL job that you are doing with your family.