We’re still where the sidewalk starts

I bought my daughter the 30th anniversary edition of Shel Silverstein’s Where the Sidewalk Ends for her fourth birthday. She’s a little young for it, but it’s a beautiful book, and, well, I wanted it.

She’s quite taken with the poems, and chooses the book every night at bedtime. Then she listens with such focus that I wonder if she’s having petit mal seizures.

Me: “Are you listening?”

Her: “Yes. He has a thing stuck to his foot.”

Me: “A little monster. Does that really happen to people?”

Her: “No.”

Me: “Is it kind of silly?”

Her [without expression]: “Yes.”

The whole thing is reminding me of grade ten, when I read Pride and Prejudice for the first time. I was quite proud of myself, until I read it again two years later and realized it was supposed to be funny.

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