Jack told me on the phone today that while at Nana's house, he was getting to read one of my favorite
childhood books, the Landmark Series classic Daniel Boone: The Opening of the Wilderness. Jack relayed excitedly that Daniel Boone had killed a panther at the ripe age of ten, as if to intimate that he himself might accomplish such a feat in just a handful of years.
I grew up reading these books of American folklore, cover to cover and back again, often under the light of a flashlight concealed beneath my bedspread. While most other's childhood evenings may have consisted of "good night, ma" and "good night, john-boy," mine certainly most often consisted of "Stephen, turn your light out" and "just one more chapter, mom."
One of my favorites was the story of General George Armstrong Custer. to find out later that he was something of a buffoon does nothing to diminish his place in the history of my childhood. I read that book seven times in the Third Grade alone.