Comment j'ai appris à lire by Agnès Desarthe

By Agnès Desarthe

« Apprendre à lire a été, pour moi, une des choses les plus faciles et les plus difficiles. Cela s’est passé très vite, en quelques semaines ; mais aussi très lentement, sur plusieurs décennies. 
Déchiffrer une suite de lettres, los angeles traduire en sons fut un jeu, comprendre à quoi cela servait fut une traversée souvent âpre, et, jusqu’à l’écriture de ce livre, profondément énigmatique. »

Comment apprend-on à lire ? remark notre désir de lecture peut-il être entravé ? remark l’écriture peut-elle rendre meilleur lecteur ? Cheminant à travers ses souvenirs, Agnès Desarthe mène une enquête passionnante, puisant au coeur d’un mystery : celui de n’avoir pas aimé lire pendant longtemps.

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This removed any caked dirt or manure, but it also stimulated her to let her milk down. By the 45 MICHAEL PERRY time you returned with the milker, beads of milk were forming at the end of each teat. Our De Laval Milkers were composed of a stainless steel bucket that sat flat on the floor and was capped with a detachable top sprouting several sets of hoses. One set was plugged into the overhead vacuum pipe. The other two hoses—a narrow black “pulse tube” to provide vacuum, and a larger clear tube to carry the milk—were connected to a shiny silver claw from which radiated four hollow rubber tubes called inflations.

Then the front door would open and close and the house would go quiet while Dad walked to the garden and flung the ashes across the snow, where they left a skid mark like a miniature thundercloud run aground. Then he was back inside, and even now I can summon the image of him downstairs alone, the day’s work in mind, the simple ceremony unfolding. The crumple of the newspaper as he packs it in above the grates. The careful placing of the kindling, and then a few larger sticks of wood to catch and grow the first flames.

And truth be told, her interest in the princess worries me less than her interest in the horse. The first thing Amy showed me the day I met her was her collection of plastic horses, and her fascination with everything equine has only grown since then. I fear my daughter is Horse People. You know Horse People. I am not talking about those loftily behatted julep-sippers of the Triple Crown circuit. Those are horsey people. Whereas horse people are generally solid citizens with day jobs. You see them behind the counter at the bank, or working reception at the doctor’s office, or hanging your drywall, and you don’t suspect a thing.

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