He can't read it and he can read it
and they discuss the Mississippi River
sometimes he tries to read it by himself
where someone has stood for a long time
here's a picture – Huck is opening the door
the man's dirty and glaring WHO IS HE?
he carries on reading skipping and puzzling
....where his face showed; it was white; not like another man's white, but a white to make a body sick, a white to make a body's flesh crawl – a tree-toad white, a fish-belly white......
he slams the book shut and bolts from the room
now footsteps coming nearer and soft mutterings
but it's all right now and later his grandpa reads
At night there's a huge white toad which sits
from Jacob, 2016, Shoestring Press
© 2011 Carole Coates
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Last updated 20 June 2016