Monday, June 14, 2010

Remembering The Chosen

I saw a gaggle of Jewish boys in yarmulkes, long dark pants, and long-sleeved white shirts on their way home from playing sandlot baseball, and I thought of that opening bit in The Chosen by Chaim Potok, a book I read on a whim back in high school, I think.  I was in an experimental honors English class that year, or something, so I missed the books my regular classmates were being forced to read, which made those books seem enticing. 

I had a lot of time to spend in the school building that year, waiting for practices to start after school ended, I think, and once I finished the reading material I'd brought along, I would read almost anything I could find.  (I drew the line at textbooks.)

There were stacks of books I hadn't read in the English teacher's room, and he gave me permission to read whatever I found.  I think that was how I discovered The Chosen and A Separate Peace (the book that finally taught me how to spell separate correctly all the time) and The Promise and eventually My Name Is Asher Lev (which I hope you read). 

There was no discussion with a group about themes and symbolism and such, just me and amazing works of literature that percolated in my brain and helped make me who I am today; you know, the kind of person who sees a bunch of Jewish boys with baseball gloves walking down the sidewalk away from a ball field and thinks of a book she read fifteen years ago. 

Have you ever seen something in passing that reminded you of a book from long ago?

No comments:

Post a Comment