July 9, 2006

tree

Gently, Teacher explained the difference between a lie and a story. A lie was something you told because you were mean or a coward. A story was something you made up out of something that might have happened. Only you didn't tell it like it was; you told it like you thought it should have been.

As Teacher talked, a great trouble left Francie. Lately, she had been given to exaggerating things. She did not report happenings truthfully, but gave them color, excitement and dramatic twists. Katie was annoyed at this tendency and kept warning Francie to tell the plain truth and stop romancing. But Francie just couldn't tell the plain undecorated truth. She had to put something to it.

Although Katie had this same flair for coloring an incident and Johnny himself lived in a half-dream world, they tried to squelch these things in their child. Maybe they had a good reason. Maybe they knew their own gift of imagination colored too rosily the poverty and brutality of their lives and made them able to endure it. Perhaps Katie thought that if they did not have this faculty, they would be clearer-minded; see things as they really were, and seeing them loathe them and somehow find a way to make them better.

(via)

2 comments:

sheeep said...

Is this quoto from a book? I like the first paragraph a lot!

jean said...

yes, this is from betty smith's "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn," one of my favorite novels of all time.