the wrong reader

sebold

Dense, dreary and boring,  one Amazon reviewer calls WG Sebold’s book, Austerlitz, like it doesn’t occur to him that he might simply be the wrong reader. Like maybe he doesn’t get it.
Man Ray says if you don’t like something, turn away, go find something else. Which is hard to do but good to keep in mind.
I was walking with Harrison yesterday at dusk, my favorite time of day. He stopped and pointed at the swallows flying high overhead. Look! Birds! He is almost three. I can tell he’s been practicing his “ir” sound. b-irr-ds. They are catching bugs, he tells me. Mosquitoes, he explains. He holds up his arm and pinches it. He tells me that mosquitoes bite us. He is concerned with injuries right now, with scabs, cuts, scars, burns and bites. He looks back up, watching for a long time. He whispers, “Thank you, birds.”
Harrison tells me he doesn’t love me. He only loves his other grandmother. He says I can only love him. I cannot love his baby sister. I tell him love is really big, but he says it’s not.


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