So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: “You are not alone.”
~ Roald Dahl
When I was a sick little girl the thing that would, — heck, as a sick old woman, the thing that does — above all else, make me feel better is to be read to. I love to read, but there is an element of nurture, and rightness, and care, that being read to brings immediately to the sick room.
Today, when G/Son was feeling very sick, Nonna straightened the cool cotton sheets, and offered iced water with a straw, and proffered pudding, and Italian ice, and soup. She ran bathtubs full of mint leaves and she made ice compresses and rubbed feet. And, most of all, Nonna read. G/Son asked for The Secret Garden, and so we moved from cholera-struck India, across the sea with the snotty children of a missionary and his wife, onto a train running north through the rain to the Scottish moors, and into a house with over a hundred rooms, but most of them locked up.
And then we closed our eyes, and imagined a red light surrounding us to make us feel better. And then the crickets came to do magic.
And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.
~ Roald Dahl
Has anyone ever read you back to health? Have you ever read to anyone as a spell?
Picture found here.