An essay I wrote about reading was published in Issue 9 of The Equals Record yesterday – a publication publishing multidisciplinary, original content focused on issues relevant to women. I’m so excited to be included and feel like a proper writer. Here’s a little snippet. Read the entire essay and lots more here.
One morning in winter. I sit at the counter, my chipped toenails dangling just above the floor, my fingers curled around a warm mug of tea with the Monday newspaper laid out before me. It is the usual gloom and doom: inflation rising, jobs diminishing, a tsunami here, an earthquake there. The magnitude of each weighs upon me, resting on my shoulders heavily, waiting to be contemplated and considered. But together, this mish-mash of stories forms the humdrum familiarity of the daily news — a little politics, a lot of suffering and very little joy. No surprises there.
As I raise the cup to my lips, allowing the liquid to spread through my limbs like a warm embrace, one headline catches my eye. “1 billion of world’s population still illiterate,” it says.
I look again, convinced I have misread. But there it is again: 1 billion. A typing error? Idle fact checking? How can it be? 1 billion people denied life’s greatest pleasure — never able to lose themselves in a book, feel the irresistible tug of a story you just can’t put down. Never able to fall asleep, mind whirling with the images of a faraway land. 1 billion people who do not know how to read? But what is a life without words? Without books? Without stories?