My body heavy with the fatigue of sleep. Yet, a part of me is awake, anticipating. With each moment, the anticipation grows. Falling deeper. With each moment, I beckon sleep to remain at bay. Wanting more. With each moment, the passion intensifies.
Long summer nights. Dark winter nights. Each memory etched the same way. Wrapped in my blankets, dim light barely filling the room, breathing in the intoxication of words that consume my imagination and paralyse my senses.
My first love has always been words. Pages upon pages of words.
I will never forget reading chapter six. Chapter six of To Kill A Mockingbird. I held my breath in fear and anticipation. The dark foreboding scene. The words played out like a movie in my mind.
“When Jem put his foot on the bottom step, the step squeaked. He stood still, then tried his weight by degrees. The step was silent. Jem skipped two steps, put his foot on the porch, heaved himself to it, and teetered a long moment. He regained his balance and dropped to his knees. He crawled to the window, raised his head and looked in. Then I saw the shadow.”
I have danced the dance of words my whole life. Back in the time of no internet and no mobile phones, the nights were reserved for escape into a paper world of romance, mystery and heart break. With each page, my eyes widened, my imagination ran wild and I believed. The characters, scenes, plots and stories were no longer just words on a page.
Anne of Green Gables – a gift from my godmother on my tenth birthday. My heart aches just thinking about that gift. In my world, Anne was real. She lived and breathed in Green Gables and I so desperately wanted to go there.
Meeting Josephine Alibrandi one summer, in Queensland. On holiday with my family, we went shopping and there she was, looking back at me from the cover of the newly published book. I walked down those streets with Josephine and laughed as her family gossiped about her misadventures to each other, thinking “It’s not just me!”
Wishing that Santa would bring me a Wishing Chair and truly believing that Hogwarts was real. Words have always been my first love. Something I cherish. Treasure.
Oh the conversations I would have if I could. The questions. The stories we could share. To spend a summer in the South. Dressed in velvet ball gowns and matching bonnets. To ride in carriages, and sip tea in the setting afternoon sun. Scarlett. She broke my heart and made me cry for a whole summer. Oh the things we could say.
The simplicity of some things in life make them unforgettable. The smell of a new born baby. A thunderstorm with rain pounding down on a tin roof. The crisp pages of a book. The clean new smell. The smooth texture of the cover. The weight in your hands as you hold on to it, grasping each word, turning each page.
Time changes us. Technology mocks us. Stories. Words. The connection that these make will always stay the same.
What is your first love?
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