Mother, i am young. Mother, i am just eighteen. I am strong. I will work hard, mother. But i do not want this child to grow up just to work hard. What must i do, mother, what must i do to make a different world for her? How do i start?" "the secret lies in the reading and the writing. You are able to read. Every day you must read one page from some good book to your child. Every day this must be until the child learns to read. Then she must read every day, i know this is the secret
Did you ever see so many pee-wee hats, carl?" "they're beanies." "they call them pee-wees in brooklyn." "but i'm not in brooklyn." "but you're still a brooklynite." "i wouldn't want that to get around, annie." "you don't mean that, carl." "ah, we might as well call them beanies, annie." "why?" "when in rome do as the romans do." "do they call them beanies in rome?" she asked artlessly. "this is the silliest conversation.
Dear god," she prayed, "let me be something every minute of every hour of my life. Let me be gay; let me be sad. Let me be cold; let me be warm. Let me be hungry...Have too much to eat. Let me be ragged or well dressed. Let me be sincere - be deceitful. Let me be truthful; let me be a liar. Let me be honorable and let me sin. Only let me be something every blessed minute. And when i sleep, let me dream all the time so that not one little piece of living is ever lost.
Because the child must have a valuable thing which is called imagination. The child must have a secret world in which live things that never were. It is necessary that she believe. She must start out believing in things not of this world. Then when the world becomes too ugly for living in, the child can reach back and live in her imagination.
Those were the rommely women: mary, the mother, evy, sissy, and katie, her daughters, and francie, who would grow up to be a rommely woman even though her name was nolan. They were all slender, frail creatures with wondering eyes and soft fluttery voices. But they were made out of thin invisible steel.