The next five childhood pictures selected randomly from the box included two of toddler me with a book. I expect my parents thought it was cute to photograph me ‘reading’ before I could actually read.
I’m sure I didn’t have the numbers and variety of picture books that children today enjoy. In fact, for bedtime stories I only remember one – a book of poems my sister and I recited with my father. It seems to me we read this one book over and over. The poems were classics that included: “The Owl and the Pussycat,” “Turtle Soup” from Alice in Wonderland — Beautiful soup so rich and green — “Who Killed Cock Robin?” and “The Keeper.” That latter we sang in two voices:
“Sing you well?”
At some point in my childhood, one of us five siblings coined the phrase “All gone the book” when we got to the end of a story. This became one of our family catch-phrases when a book was finished.
But, of course, a book is never over. The story or poem stays with us forever.
“Derry derry down.”
“Among the leaves so green-o.”