So I say to you, read! Read! Something will stick in the mind, be diligent and good will come of it. Rev. Thomas Shepard, in a letter to his son, read by me in Sarah Vowell's book The Wordy Shipmates.
For reasons I don't quite understand, I was piling up books to read and then not reading them. It had become a habit - finding good books and not reading.
Earlier this summer I decided to correct the habit and read through my stash of books.
Good thing I started reading, otherwise I might not have recognized Roger Williams when I saw him.
But, since I was in the middle of The Wordy Shipmates when my family took a field trip to the Hall of Fame for Great Americans in the Bronx, I recognized him right away. Okay, I had to read the name plate first, but it was like sighting a celebrity.
I said, "Hey, I know this guy! This is the Rhode Island guy. He and the other Puritan minister people didn't get along because of theology differences or something like that, and he was banished. They banished him - and he was a Puritan too! Then the one guy - Winthrop? Yeah, Winthrop warned him about something or other. It was winter when he was banished and first he could stay, but then he couldn't. And then Williams started Rhode Island - not right away, but later. I know who he is. Roger Williams! Isn't that so cool?"
My husband said what he usually says after my narrations, "What are you talking about?"
Then my daughter gave a more articulate description of Roger Williams. Turns out she remembers reading about him in This Country of Ours a couple of years ago, and she's way better at narrating than I am. Darn homeschoolers.
I might not have narrated The Wordy Shipmates well, but something from the book stuck in my mind, as Rev. Thomas Shepard told his son would happen if he read.
So I say to you, read! Read!