Monday, April 03, 2006

Bringing Peace

Merle Harris sent me this lovely story about taking one of my books, Karori Sanctuary, to a school in Canada.

...Do I have a story for you. I'm back working again and Monday and Tuesday for the first time in a year I was one of four authors doing writing workshops for grades 4-6 students during our spring break.

I always show them how to make some simple book structures and take a small collection of the handmade books I own. I think this gives them an incentive to do the best writing they can and to think about actually making books from their work. This year I added "Karori Sanctuary" - people are always stunned that I take my good books to show "children" but I find they treat them with reverence and delight.

Anyway there was this one fellow in the gr. 5/6 group I had on Tuesday morning who spent a lot of time at the book table - later when I was walking around I noticed your book at his table and he said to me excitedly (paraphrasing but pretty accurate) "Mrs. Harris this is the most amazing book - but even more than how it looks, the poem makes me feel so peaceful, I've never felt like this before. I hope you don't mind but I copied it out in my book so I could read it when I needed to." On a single sheet he'd written out your poem, all the bibliographic information and the workshop name and date and my name. All around the poem, as a frame, he had written the leaf names. Then he said "Even just reading the names out brings me peace."

He thanked me profusely at the end of class and then at the end of the day when I was leaving he came and gave me a hug and thanked me again for bringing your book.

I thought you'd like to hear this. As I told you, Karori Sanctuary is one of my favourites and it was sheer magic to see the effect it had on this kid.


rachlovestheweb said...

how lovely!!!!

Jane in Dunedin said...

Wow - it must be so wonderful to get that kind of feedback!

E said...

Doesn't just one story like this make everything worthwhile?!
I was moved to tears M - you're doing a great thing for the Universe and Peace!!