Don’t Miss the Dedication

The dedication of a book is easily overlooked or breezed through and quickly forgotten. This is my favorite book dedication. Not surprisingly, it precedes one of my favorite novels too, East of Eden by John Steinbeck. It’s massive in both size and stature, 601 pages and utterly breathtaking, respectively speaking. Here’s how the author sums up its contents to the person to whom he dedicates his work:

Dear Pat:

You came upon me carving some kind of little figure out of wood and you said, “Why don’t you make something for me?”

I asked you what you wanted, and you said, “A box.”
“What for?”
“To put things in.”
“What things?”
“Whatever you have,” you said.

Well, here’s your box. Nearly everything I have is in it, and it is not full. Pain and excitement are in it, and feeling good or bad and evil thoughts and good thoughts- the pleasure of design and the indescribable joy of creation.

And on top of these are all the gratitude and love I have for you.
And still the box is not full.

I’m not sure why I share this, other than the fact that it’s beautiful and heartfelt, and I don’t think there’s a limit on the amount of beautiful, heartfelt creations you can share with others, especially right now. In a way, I feel like the author is speaking to all of us: Never overlook the dedications that are right before your eyes. Fill your box with everything you have- and share it.
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  • sarah

    I’ve been meaning to read East of Eden and now I’m even more motivated after your personal recommendation. Perhaps Om Gal can start a Book Club!