AND THEN A BEAR APPEARED AMONG THE PAGES
In our series of short stories, our Wonnie bookmark appears among the pages of playful, introspective, adventure books, that we try to explore as well.
The unexpected dialogue
Is homework necessary?
Why do I have to eat minestrone soup twice a week?
Most importantly, why should I read at least one book per month?
‘Because culture is important, Giorgio: we cannot achieve anything without it!’ my dad says as he leaves my bedroom.
‘Come on, dad, leave me my smartphone, at least!’
‘Oh, please! You’ve got to finish your Moby Dick chapter, without wasting your time on TikTok!’. The door slams, my phone disappears.
A five hundred pages novel published at the end of the last century, to read while the sun of Spring emerges in the garden. Of course! Who wouldn’t live the same way? Not today: I wear my sneakers, my cap and open the window to escape. See you in two hours, dad, you can read that book!
‘Giorgio, where are you going? Are you going to leave me here, all by myself?’
I almost slip on the windowsill. Who spoke? There’s no one here!
‘What? No one? Who do you think I am?’ an acute, distant voice says.
‘Yeah, who are you? I can’t see you!’
‘Of course, I’m hidden among the pages you’re reading!’
I instantly run to my bed. I can’t believe it: a piece of wood is speaking!
‘I am not a piece of wood, you fool! I’m a bookmark! If you read more, you’d learn how to choose words in a better way!’
Not only the polar bear-shaped bookmark among the Moby Dick pages is speaking to me, but it’s also able to read my mind!
‘If they made me some paws, I would use them to hit you in the face! How can you imagine there is no magic in reading?’
‘Yeah, sure, but a speaking bookmark…’
‘…does it seem strange to you? Well, if you ever read Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland you would change your mind quickly, dear!’
‘Why should I read it? There’s already a cartoon!’
The polar bear-shaped bookmark gets annoyed, the wood seems to burn.
‘Again? You will always have movies, Giorgio, but don’t underestimate your ability to turn great writers’ words into imaginary world. Your imagination is able to do that!’
‘You look wise, polar bear-shaped bookmark’
‘Continue reading Melville, you could become wise too’
‘Melville? Who is he?’
‘The author of the book you’re clearly not reading!’
With a strong move, the wooden stick bounces out of the volume.
‘Hey! I had read at least fifty pages! How can I find my mark again?’
‘We’ll find it together: come on, let’s start again…by finally giving reading the time it deserves’
How can I say no to a polar bear-shaped bookmark? As I sit cross-legged on my bed, I consult page one, ready to be amazed by a story described as legendary. The wooden bookmark stands close to me, he’s silent all at once, I think it doesn’t want to disturb me…Back to the articles!
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