Monday, February 19

Dimity Dumpty

The Story of Humpty's Little Sister
by Bob Graham
Candlewick 2007

Dimity stopped. Her hands to her face
She took a deep breath...

then removed her shirt

and bandaged Humpty's leakage.
That's page 23, and probably the point where this book turned from a little weird to all the way out there.

The Dumpty family are circus performers, acrobats, to be precise. In a human circus, mind you. They travel from town to town in a circus wagon made from an old egg carton, which is cute, pulled by a chicken, which is weird when you think about it.

While the other members of the family fly through the air with the greatest of ease, Dimity prefers to sit and play her little flute to the animals of the woods. Aw. Humpty, on the other hand, is a handful of a boy, graffiti-ing the wall of his egg carton and running off to tag nearby walls.

Oh, so that's what he was doing up there in the first place, he was off to do a little graffiti! So there goes your messages: graffiti leads to serious leakage.

Okay, so Humpty recovers and returns to the circus life where he's jumping around on the backs of horses for the delight of many who may be secretly wishing for another great fall. Much like there are people who watch auto racing for the accidents.

I'm going to save a lot of people the trouble of calling me on this and say I'm using my adult brain to over analyze an otherwise unusually unique book. I suppose it's reassuring to kids that Humpty only suffered a cracked shell and that his gentle sister was able to save him from fatal leakage and salmonella. It might even be the perfect book to open up young minds to questions about the dangers of climbing walls and how you can't let your fear of falling keep you from a life in the circus.

It still leaves a weird taste in my mouth.
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