The Book

September 27, 2009
Sigh. You look around the room. What did your mom tell you to do? Oh, yeah, go find something to read. You had laughed at that, laughed really hard. She knows you’re an eight grader with the reading level of a high school graduate. What haven’t you read in this house already? You scan the bookshelves; familiar titles fill you with memories of each book. Suddenly, you have the feeling you should check the very left bottom corner. When you do, there is a book there you have never seen before. It looks very new, not even any shelf wear or curled corners. You pick it up and open it up to the most marvelous book in your life. When you finish the first page, you have a feeling of unease as if you shouldn’t go past that. You sigh, put the book back on the shelf and reread Charles Dickens David Copperfield. The next day, you watch the clock tick through all your classes, waiting for the clock to strike 2:45 so you can rush home to read more of the marvelous book.
You are almost home when you think, why shouldn’t I read more than one page? There aren’t any rules against that? Why, I’ll just read the whole book today. Smiling smugly, you run inside and grab the book and begin the read. An hour passes when you realize you have only finished the second page and have just been staring at it for the past hour. You shake your head take a deep breath and turn the page. Well you try but you can’t. You just can’t will your fingers to grasp the corner. Frustrated, you violently slam the book on the shelf. Never again will you touch that book.

You do anyway, everyday. Only one page though, you realize that is the unspoken rule of reading this book. Years pass and you realize that you and this character are very similar, basically identical. You both face the same problems and savor the same triumphs. This book opens up your soul and fills it with indescribable understanding and joy. Soon you are married to the man of your dreams, proposing to you on the lake where you first met. The wedding is a day filled with tears of joy, a whole new life to begin. Soon after that you are a grandmother, your daughter having her first baby. It’s a beautiful baby boy, smiling at his new world. One day your daughter comes over to visit, bringing her son and her husband with her. The boy is now four years old, mischievous and curious.
While he goes to explore the house, you and your daughter and your son in law talk about the rise and fall of the economy. Deep in discussion, you hear a crash and you race around the hall corner to find your grandson. He has the book and has smeared all of it with chocolate and god knows whatever he had in his pockets when he came here. Anger boils inside you, and you shakily tell your daughter that it would be best if she left and came back to visit later. Confuse she takes her boy and leaves the house. Once the sound of the car is gone, you grab the book, realizing that you can never read it again. Maybe, just maybe you can salvage it. You sigh, having already read your page today; you set the book on the shelf above the fireplace and go to bed.
Late that night, you smell smoke and realize that something has caught on fire. Going as fast as you can in your age, you rush to the fireplace, seeing that your book and everything in the room has burst into flames. Crying out, you rush out of the house, your only thought is to get help so you can save your book. Fire trucks arrive and blast icy cold water on the house. Shivering you wait. And wait. And wait. Finally you can go back into your house. The fire didn’t spread much only burning a small area around your fireplace. That means your book is gone. Gone Forever. Never to be finished. Crying, you wait for them to clean up the mess and go back to bed
In complete sorrow you think about the book then realize its meaning. Why it was so important to you. You smile, finally content, and close your eyes; never again will they open to read another page of that wonderful, marvelous book.

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This article has 6 comments. Post your own now!

Lostinbooks This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Oct. 18, 2009 at 10:50 pm
Ah...thought it was something like that. But doesn't that mean she died at the end? Her book was destroyed, so her life must have ended also?
PurpleMidnight said...
Oct. 15, 2009 at 9:51 pm
Okay, the meaning is its life, you can only live life one page at a time. Thats what she figured out, she was reading her life, one page at a time.
Arrow said...
Oct. 14, 2009 at 6:34 pm
This was a really neat story, and like Lector said, great job on the second person. But I couldn't catch the hidden meaning either.
PurpleMidnight said...
Oct. 9, 2009 at 5:42 pm
Im sorry, I don't want to make it obvious, but think about it. What could it compare to?
lector said...
Oct. 9, 2009 at 12:47 pm
I know that it is hard to write in 2nd person, but you did an great job. Good story.
CrazyClimber said...
Oct. 9, 2009 at 12:36 pm
i really love the story, but i didnt git the hidden meaning. mayb you should maake it more clear
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