Laura Smith

When I Used to Like Books

When the gray skies broke and the ice melted, I’d meet the little Ingalls girls by the streams for tadpole catching and dress wading. On more adventurous days, Harriet and I

would lay on our bellies on tarred rooftops, scribbling furiously on our 1-subject notebooks, noting every observation, chewing on plastic pen caps through gapped teeth.

I’d sit with Angel on clear days, watching Rags play in the dirt or use my best negotiating skills to help Peter coax Fudge out of a tree, refer them both to The Babysitter’s Club for

future reference. I’d walk to the mailbox with Lee to drop off a letter to Mr. Henshaw, stopping to admire Old Dan and Little Anne’s latest kill hanging out to dry from the

Coleman house. On the way home see Matilda and Charlie try to start a kickball game. Sophie already choosing her BFG to be on her team while James divvies out peach slices

covered in Wonka chocolate. Craving a moment of normalcy, the Boxcar children would give me a lift up the mountain where Heidi invited me in for fresh goat’s milk and cheese

slabs slid onto thick slices of bread. A side of vegetables from Mary and Dickon’s garden. I’d walk home with Fern returning from her visit with Wilbur and Charlotte, red

pig tail bobbing up and down. Stuart Little hitches a ride on her shoulder, anxious to get home before dark. As the light dimmed, the print too dark to see, I’d shut my book for

the night.

Laura Smith is a 2007 graduate from Carlow University in Pittsburgh PA, earning her BA in Creative Writing. Currently, she does administrative work for a Long Term Care Insurance company. In her free time, she writes poetry and has written two children’s novels that she is looking to get published. Her work has appeared in 6 Sentences, Rune Magazine, Voices from the Garage, Falling Star Magazine and Blast Furnace.