Read Between the Lines | Deborah Batterman

Anna thinks she’s smarter than I am. “You’re the one who gets all the A’s, sure, sure,” she says. We are sitting at a café in Greenwich Village, Anna’s feet resting (more like showing off her clunky new Doc Martens) on a chair she has pulled over from a nearby table. She grabs a cigarette from an outside pocket of her bookbag, lights up, frowns when I shake my head, no thanks. She takes a drag, her words come out in one long breath. “But I’m the one who’s going places.” High school is three months from being a thing of the past. Her dream is to work for a record company. She’ll be an executive secretary, go to all the parties, mingle with rock stars. Nobody can take a letter as fast as she can. She reaches into her bookbag, something she wants to show me, a page from her notepad. I try to decipher the sweep of curves and lines reminiscent of the poems in Persian miniatures we saw on a class trip to the Brooklyn Museum. “All You Need Is Love,” she says. Transcribed into Gregg shorthand. Continue reading “Read Between the Lines | Deborah Batterman”