Saturday, October 20, 2007

Almost Forever

Testa, Maria. 2003. (Paperback 2007) Almost Forever.

At just 70 pages, Almost Forever is a short but incredibly powerful read. It's a verse novel about a young girl--a first grader--whose father is sent to Vietnam in February of 1968. The story is about her family--her mom, her brother, and herself, of course. About what changes, and what doesn't when someone you love--someone you depend on--is far from you. The emotions are powerful. And this is one I highly recommend. This book isn't about politics--if war is wrong or right--it's about love and family. Highly recommended.

One Year (Not Such A Long Time) pp. 13-14

The four of us
with other families,
we all gathered
in a building
on the Army base,
all in a special room
set aside
for saying goodbye.

One year
is not
such a long time,

Daddy said,
kneeling on one knee
in front of me,
my shoulders.

In one year, Baby,
you'll be in
second grade,
not first,
and you'll be
seven years old,
not six,
and then
I'll be home.
One year
is not
such a long time.

I did not
tell Daddy
that he was wrong--
that second grade
was half a hallway
and a whole world
away from first,
that seven
was everything
six was not,
and that one year
was forever.

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