A small sign on the light wood desk reads “LIBRARIAN.”
“May I help you?” a curly haired woman asks.
The woman glances at my summer reading list which she keeps in her bag. “We’re looking for Pippi Long-Stocking,” she says. “What else would you like to read?” she asks.
“Can I have five?” I ask.
The librarian asks, “Do you have a library card?”
“Yes!” I say.
“Then, yes. You may take out five.”
My feet bounce me up and down.
“How old are you?” the curly haired woman asks.
I hold up five fingers.
The woman sighs. “She’s six.”
I’m five, I tell my Friend.
The librarian leads me to a bookcase.
“You should be able to read these books,” she says.
I pick up Good Night, Moon and sigh.
“That’s a good book,” she says.
“It’s a baby book,” I say. “Do you have Lion, Witch and Wardrobe?”
“That’s probably a little too advanced for you,” she says.
“I can read it,” I say. “I’ve read almost the whole Bible. Except he didn’t like it when I said the Woman clothed with the sun is Mary.”
The curly haired woman chuckles.
“But I did read it!” I say stamping my foot.
“I’m sure you did.” The chuckle remains in her eyes.
“The Narnia books are over here.“ She leads me to a tall bookshelf. “You’ll need the stool.”
Standing on a small stool, I reach for The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe.
“Oh!” I cry. “There are one, two, three, four, five …six more!”
I pull the pastel books in their impervious cellophane covers down and carry them to the librarian’s desk.
“May I take three extra?” I ask.
“I’m sorry,” she says. “I can only allow you to take five.”
I stand at the desk staring at each cover. Which can I leave behind?
The woman’s voice sounds behind me, “Did you find what you wanted?”
“Yes, but I can’t take them all out.” My mouth is upside down.
The woman tells the librarian, “You can put the extra books on my card.”
My smile pours itself into my eyes, sinks into my feet.
“Eight books!” I softly announce to my Friend. “Eight books!”