Cover to Cover (a poem by Karise Gililland)


His eyes were downcast.
The floor was of utmost interest.
His feet shifted back and forth.
“I only read 6 books all year.”

And maybe compared to everyone else’s forty or fifty, that was shabby. But you have to know, that just a few months before, this ninth grade boy read his first book cover to cover. Fifteen years old, growing a mustache, and he really read his first book. And loved it. I teach older students. It’s rare that I get to see the beginning of someone’s reading career. I may see it take off or fully develop but I hardly ever get to be in on the Genesis moment. I saw it. I saw the wonder of that dazed expression when the book closes, you realize it’s over, and you want more. I saw him return to the shelf and choose a new one. I saw that. I saw it six times. There may be seven wonders in the world. I have seen six of them. 

Cover to Cover

by Karise Gililland

Prodigious diamonds mined by human hands,
Dig for less than hope writ by the letter.
Queries for the best, to get the better
Looks to quarry the truth the way he can.

A man selects his site, prepares his plan,
Searches stacks, tenacious treasure seeker
Finds this question remains for the reader:
What is it that a book does to a man?

Cover to cover, discover, behold-
Tale dewy decimals of sparkling Hope
To grasp that Truth that’s held in holds
Row upon row of full-text envelopes
Stacked revelation, riches rolled and scrolled;
Mysterious lines examine man, uncloaked.


Image by Tom Darin Liskey


44401456_1954565297963685_2465982320838967296_nKarise Gililland has a  BA in English from Southern Methodist University and a Masters in Imaginative and Cultural Apologetics from Houston Baptist University. She consumes copious amounts of time (and coffee!) shuttling her teenagers to and fro, rescuing her cats from impending peril, and writing for An Unexpected Journal. She currently teaches the most amazing third graders at a classical Christian school in Fort Worth.