I hope readers enjoy this excerpt from Chapter 7 and share my feelings on the joyous occasion of the birth of a child. Although it's a hot day in August, consider for your imagination, a cold February night in 1975.
Gio left Marie, Georgette and Matthew to deal with the teenagers and headed quietly to Amy's room. It was a good thing her roommate was heavily sedated with the commotion of the two families in and out this evening.
He stood in the doorway, watching as Sera held her nephew in her arms, gently rocking him back and forth. Gio's heart swelled with pride and sorrow.
"He's so cute, Amy." Sera sniffed, "He's so beautiful – and hairy!"
"Yeah, he is beautiful, isn't he?" Amy responded weakly from her bed, already dozing off.
"What are you going to call him?" she sniffed again.
"I didn't even think about that. How stupid to not even think of a name yet. I'm just sooo tired..."
"Oh, don't worry, something will come to you soon," Sera turned her loving gaze to the slumbering baby, "Right, hairy boy?"
The nurse slid past Gio to retrieve the baby and take him back to the nursery. Sera protested at first then gave in to her authority. Amy had already fallen asleep and could care less.
The nurse expertly bundled him back up into a tightly wrapped package. She swept him into her arms, walked towards the visiting area and stated, "All right you people, it's time to move out. Come back tomorrow morning at eleven."
"Yes, nurse," said Gio.
"Have a good night, Father."
"Bless you, Dorothy."
Sera pulled the blankets up over Amy's petite body and kissed her on the forehead. As she headed to the door, she subconsciously reached for Gio's hand and clasped it in hers as they headed down the hall for one last peek through the nursery window.
"Isn't he beautiful, Gio?"
"He is, " He replied fighting back tears as he gazed at the rows of bassinets.
"He's so small, so helpless - but so loud!"
"They can be that way."
"I finally have a little brother - well, nephew. This is going to be fun."
Gio turned to look at her smiling face faintly reflected in the nursery window. It was the first time in months that he had seen her happy.
"He's going to need someone special like you to watch out for him."
"Oh, I will. I love him so much already!" she sniffed., “I feel a special bond with him.”
"Considering you were there when he was conceived, yes?"
Sera turned quickly to look up at him. She blushed thinking she was in trouble but when she caught the smirk on his face and glint in his eyes, she relaxed.
"That's right," she quipped, "Plus, he was born the same year as me."
"The year of the rabbit. With all the bad things that have happened the last few months, I'm looking forward to this year. Things can only get better, right?"
He paused to recite some memorized scripture for the occasion then stopped, "Sure, Sera. That's a good way to look at it. This baby's birth and his development are things to celebrate in hope and love."
"Does he have to be baptized? Can be even be baptized if he's a ..." she whispered closer to him, "bastard?"
Gio placed his large hand on her shoulder and led her back to where the family was waiting, "That's another bridge to cross another day, okay?"
- End excerpt -
Thank you for reading :-)
Friday, August 13, 2010
Sunday, August 8, 2010
It was an interesting coincidence on a cold winter's night that I tripped upon Frank Hegyi's book cover for "If it wasn't for celibacy, I would have been a priest". It jumped out at me while I viewed a list of books by members of the Ottawa Independent Writers.
I stole the opportunity to speak with Frank about his book before a working group meeting in February. I asked him about it and shyly mentioned that one of the main characters in my novel is a priest - a priest who encountered carnal temptation early in his career. Frank gladly pulled out a copy of the book and offered it to me as a gift - although I insisted twice on paying him.
The book is a collection of Frank's essays on Religion, Politics and Life. When time permitted, I really enjoyed reading his insights. I found myself nodding in agreement with many of his observations and views.
Frank is a calm, quiet man with an extraordinary history of overcoming obstacles. He is also a cancer survivor who co-wrote and published "Death can wait. Stories from cancer survivors" along with Roslyn Franken, Jacquelin Holzman and Max Keeping.
Although he is not representative of my target audience, I hope I can return the favour by offering him a fresh, printed copy of my novel this winter.