And While We're On The Topic Of Zucchini...
When my sister and I were little children, before we learned to read for ourselves, our parents read to us each evening. A special treat was to be tucked up in our parents' bed, one of us on either side of our mother while she read to us and we enjoyed the pictures. Being pressed against her warm shoulder was a wonderfully contented sensation.
When my Dad read to us, it was very properly on the couch. He often brought home books for us when he was on one of his bookstore shopping sprees. My mother would roll her eyes when she saw him bringing yet more hardbound books into the house, which inevitably had to be jettisoned before each successive Navy move, but he never could resist a bestseller. And when he saw a children's book that he liked, he scooped that up as well.
Mom loved A.A.Milne and Rudyard Kipling; both authors brought an almost British inflection to her voice as she read with very precise diction and lively presentation. She preferred to be called "Mummy" as mothers in those books were. Dad favored books with rhyming texts, such as "The Cat in the Hat" and "Madeline." He always did love rhymes and limericks, quoting them with relish. Ogden Nash was a favorite of his.
The other day, my sister sent me a colorful postcard from North Carolina and, on the reverse, she had copied a little limerick that she found in the Christian Science Monitor. Reading it was Proustian for me - I was carried back to those days when my parents read to us. Nancy seems to have absorbed the love of rhyming from them, too.
Zucchini, by Ann Carranza
Consider the humble zucchini,
Some huge and others quite teeny.
Try some of both
And never be loath
To serve them with fresh tortellini.