In the Blink of an Eye

In the Blink of an Eye

By Barbara McCarthy.

Jane Jacoby, a small town librarian, had a big problem: a fear of heights. This made her life difficult due to the library’s old and creaky ladder—Jane was rather old and creaky herself. The ladder was, for Jane, akin to scaling the Himalayas without a safety rope or trusted Sherpa. Every step up the ladder felt like a week-old toothache. One evening when the library was, well as quiet as a library, Jane realized she had to face her fear head-on. Mr. Herbert Henley, a longtime patron, had requested a volume positioned on the top shelf of the stacks, “William Blake – “The Complete Sonnets.” The musty volume, Jane surmised, had not been loaned out in decades, so to her chagrin, she summoned all her strength.

To booster her self-confidence, Jane conjured up the image of scaling Mount Rushmore. With more guts than glory in mind, she began her ascent up the ancient wooden ladder. Deep breath. She climbed up Lincoln’s craggy, white granite beard, swooped up Lincoln’s gargantuan nose, and then feeling more confident, she shimmied up Lincoln’s melancholic left eyelid. Lincoln blinked.


BARBARA MCCARTHY is a writer living in New York City. She has published short stories and poetry in “The Legendary”, “Ink, Sweat and Tears” and “Long Story Short” She writes because she cannot sing or dance!

Photo by Paul Lowry.

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