Two boys are walking past the window of the shop, weighed down with adolescence and school bags. One says: I’m going to just go up to every teacher and say like, I’ve read that. His friend nodded, approving, excited. They continued on to the bakery, they walked shoulder to shoulder, staring at the ground, colluding in low voices. Later they walked back again, still speaking intensely, exultantly.
A teenager came in to buy a bookmark for her friend’s birthday. She chose a silver dragon with clear glass beads and deep emerald beads and silver spacers. She chose one with a silver love heart suspended on the end, it swung clear of the glass and metal and she looked at it from every angle in the light, the clear lights and the green lights and she told her mother: this is the one. She told me she had a book about a dragon, with silver on the ends of the pages and green writing on the front and this bookmark would go with this book. And she just knew her friend would just love this, as she knew her friend so well.
Ruth came to pick up her book: Religion and the History of Violence. She reads history intensely, all history. She said that you can’t know unless you know how much that you don’t know. We need to watch our feet, watch the details, watch what we miss and then we will see what we miss. Her voice is strong although she is not anymore; she walks carefully and it is hard for her to manage the door. Sometimes she comes in gumboots, straight from the garden, from life, from details.