After school today Bastien told me that his teacher cried in class when she was reading the day’s story. So naturally I asked what in the world the story was about.
He described for me this story that takes place “back in the day” where a grandpa could not afford the taxes for his farm. So his grandson enters an Iditarod race in which the prize money would be exactly what his grandpa needed to continue living. The boy was winning the race but then just feet before the finish line, his dog died. Just then an Indian local stepped in and made sure that no other competitor could cross the line UNTIL the boy was able to first carry his dead dog over it.
People, right then and there, behind the steering wheel of my car, I wept for my life.
It is a powerful writer who can affect you on the deepest level through a retelling of your story (through the mouth of a third grader, no less). And it is a magnificent teacher who is willing to bare her humanity for the sake of such great literature.