# 78 I, Isabel Scheherazade really sympathize with the problem those blind men were having when they kept misidentifying the elephant they were touching different parts of. (This DOES have something to do with my story, even though there have been NO elephants or blind men–that I know of–so far in the plot. Unless you consider that, in a way, I’VE been blind. Metaphorically speaking. Yes, 10-year olds are into metaphor.)
Remember Pop said that I could write a letter to the judge about Mr. Smith’s sentencing?
Well, I started right away, but get stuck after I write the first line because, when I read it, the words shock me, like I’ve stuck my finger in an outlet.
Here’s a sample; shield your eyes; the words glare.
Put him in jail and throw away the key.
This guy should be on a chain gang.
If I believed in the death penalty, I’d ask for it. But I don’t, so I won’t.
This killer deserves to be in jail as long as my parents are dead.
What’s worse than three kids orphaned by one man? Having that man go free.
Leniency? Give me a break!! My parents are dead!!
Get the idea? At some point Pop looks over my shoulder while I’m writing first lines and says, Research “letters to judges” Isabel. Make sure you are respectful.
Still, even with starting with Dear Honorable Judge, I plead for vengeance.
Then, well, then time begins passing, and things–as you’ve read–happen. Four big things stand out.
# 1. I settle in under Mimi and Pop’s gentleness mantle with all its quiet, steady energy, and love.
# 2. I find out that Arturo’s beloved Papa and the man who killed Mom and Dad are one and the same. When I tell Olivia, she tells me she’d already guessed, but didn’t want to spoil our buddy time by telling ME because she thought I’d start to hate Arturo. It horrifies me to hear her say that. Through Arturo I’d come to admire this Papa of his, even though I’d never met him; that is, as it turns out, I thought I’d never met him.
#3. My ideas shift. I make course adjustments like our Mr. Worlsey, only mine are in regard to how I think about Mr. Smith, not how I use stars to get my boat safely to shore. (At least I don’t think the stars have had anything to do with it. I suppose, in a way, I AM in a boat–like a metaphorical boat? If this were an epic poem?)
# 4. Then Mimi and I have the comb and crying incident. And I just let it all go, the tears and the hate. Just give it up.
(This is the part of my story that’s like where the blind men begin to collaborate so they “see” the whole elephant.)
I’m going back to that Judge letter. It matters.