July 07


What Would Be in Your Book Box? by Janet Bass

Late June
A summer Saturday
After mowing and an hour or two of babysitting
which included a delightful breakfast picnic….
I paused to consider what had been already filling up my “lazy days of summer.”
      -Reading Camp (three weeks down, one to go!).
      -Tutoring some precious readers.
      -Welcoming a new grand baby to the world.
      -Frequent story times with another grandson.
(Ferdinand, Harry the Dirty Dog, Make Way for Ducklings… sigh, smile)
Then an interruption to my thoughts…
An email ….would I like to contribute a post to the Nerdy Book Club?
On the topic of Reading Lives?
Sometime in July?
Sure…..but what to write about?
Then another interruption …
A text…my son was available to help me move some boxes.
Well – alrighty then-
Composing would have to wait.
Into the car and down the road to the family office building.
They were relocating.
I needed to get some things.
I needed to get my husband’s things.
You see, my darling husband died three and a half years ago.
They had been gracious to box his things and hold them until I was “ready.”
(Not sure I would ever be “ready” – but the move was making it necessary.)
So we loaded up the boxes and his desk chair.
An O U – Boomer Sooner – Crimson and Cream Over Sized Desk Chair!
It added a smile to a rather sad errand.
Once home, my son unloaded everything into the living room
and with a quick hug
and a brief “Are you okay?”
he was on his way.
An hour or so later
I found myself sitting in that chair
-That big goofy Sooner chair-
looking through the boxes.
Family photos that decorated his desk and shelves.
Handmade treasures our children had proudly given their daddy through the years.
A remote control car. A personalized Louisville Slugger bat.
Lots of pictures of chimpanzees on bookmarks, magnets and posters.
My husband had a “thing” about monkeys in clothes.
He thought it was hilarious….?
I love him anyway.book box
The last box.
A box of books.
Some college textbooks
A Bible, with several verses markedBut there were other volumes-

that I never knew he had.
A Chinese – English Bible- a friend’s baptism gift but given in friendship to Mike
An accounting book that belonged to one of our dearest friends that had died years earlier.
An reference book of his father’s, also gone now,
(They had built the family engineering business together.)
A copy of Einstein’s theory of relativity
The Unity of the Platonic Dialogue
A History of Western Philosophy
Collected Poems of Edna St. Vincent Millay
Simple treasures of learning
that told volumes about a man’s life
and what was important to him.
Faith, family, friends and learning
Mike had always been a reader.
Newspapers, magazines, computer screens
books, books, books.
All over the house.
All through the years.
All through my memories.
I closed the lid and set the box aside.
But the contents left me wondering….
What books would others find in my box?
Now I have a chance to decide.
Thank you, Michael.

Janet Bass is the elementary librarian at Oklahoma Christian School in Edmond, Oklahoma. Connecting kids and books through story times, costumed presentations, and special events, (whatever it takes!) keeps her happily busy.  Connect with her on Twitter (@jbass2274) or view the mayhem from the library at her library blog…https://www.ocsreaders.blogspot.com