Thursday, April 14, 2005

Story Time

Have you ever been to the "Story Time" at your local library? You know, the one for all the little children. In Mississippi it was "Mother Goose's Story Time" and the lady who ran it took her job seriously. Most of the people didn't know her real name, but everyone knew Mother Goose. She dressed the part. She wore an old fashioned long dress with many crinolines, opaque stockings, granny shoes, wire rimmed glasses and a wide brimmed hat that she tied securely under her chin. She carried her goose in her arms in the library. Her persona extended into the community, daily. She would show up at the Front Door during lunch and talk to all the customers, I even saw her one day in full attire at a more upscale restaurant, Harvey's. All the children in town loved her and she them.

I haven't seen a "Mother Goose" here in Virginia but our branch of the library has Story Time. Today I was doing some reading there and it seemed that as time went on there were more and more little kids....ages 3 to 5 in the building. Then I heard her....their leader....."Is everyone ready for Story Time? Let's get lined up and go in to sit on the carpet." The carpet is of course multicolored blocks with pictures, everything a curious child could love. Mothers begin herding the little ones together and there is a general hubbub. The Story Lady is getting them grouped, trying to get all their short little attentions spans going in one direction when I hear loudly above all the commotion a little boy's voice say, " Story Lady you sure smell good." Now, what can you say to that. Another little girl tittered and giggled. The Story Lady just looked at him and quietly said, "Thank you."

Then the kids marched in the room, the sliding panels shut and presently off key strains of...
The more we get together, together, together
The more we get together,
The happier we'll be.
...could be heard. And don't you know little voice could be heard more loudly above all the rest....a little boy.... exuberant.... lively.... completely immersed in the joy of singing that song. I wondered who that little fellow bet is on the "smeller".

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