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11 October 2016 @ 04:00 pm
There is no frigate like a book  
The title is an except from an Emily Dickinson poem. Books do carry us. They can take me from an unpleasant situation (flying in turbulence) and spirit me away to new worlds. Books can comfort me in times of sorrow. Every once in a while, a book provides much needed cathartic experiences for me. I can shed tears over Manchee (MANCHEE!) knowing that those tears are also shed for other losses. Conversely, books can elicit laughter and lighten my mood.

And I know I am not alone. These are experiences that all lifelong readers enjoy in their reading lives. It is also why it is important to make sure our students meet all manner of experiences in the books they read. When the former residents of the back bedroom lost their mother to cancer years ago, they found solace in many things--family, friends, faith--but also in books. We read Captain Underpants and other humorous books enjoying the release form the tensions of the day. From time to time I revisit The Tenth Good Thing About Barney to remember that a treasured pet is now doing important work.

So, I read to lead many lives. I read to find myself. I read to see others more clearly. I read because it connects me to a larger world than the one in which I live.
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