"Knots in My Yo-yo String." by Jerry Spinelli November/December 2016 AR Biography Activity

"Every morsel of me shrivels and shakes. And even so, maybe I could stand it if only it would stop. But it does not and does not---- and I cannot hear my own scream." (p. 2)

Based upon the context clues, the word "morsel" means a small amount or small piece.

"That stunted, clubbish 'bat' stands in a corner of my office today. It reminds me of how small I once was, and that the landlady's fence was both the first and last fence that I ever hit a baseball over." (p.4)

Based upon the context clues, the word "clubbish" means resembling a club shape.

"By the time the ten years were up, I had caught a handful of slamanders, hit a home run, raced aganist my stopwatch, searched for the devil, kissed a girl, and bled from an attack of leeches." (p.7)

Based upon the context clues, the word "leeches" means any of various cheifely aqutic bloodsucking or carnivours annelid worms.

"Beyond the dead end, there were two major arsenals: the stone piles and the spear field. The stone piles were on the other side of the tracks, between the main dump and the creek." (p.10)

Based upon the context clues, the word "arsenals" means a place where weapons and military equipment are stored or made.

"When the inning was over and I slunk to the Green Sox bench, the manager was waiting for me. I thought he was going to console me. I thought he would say, 'Tough luck, Jerry. Nice try,' and then tousle my hair." (p.30)

Based upon the context clues, the word "tousle" means make untidy.

"Neither Leonard nor the rest of us understood this, but in a sense we were laughing at ourselves, for Leonard Wilfong was the embodiment of the Bad Boy in all of us." (p.36)

Based upon the context clues, the word "embodiment" means the representation or expression of something in a visiable form.

"Cooling myself with a popiscle stick fan...playing chew-the-peg...'smoking' punk...digging up the grass between the front-walk bricks...Mr Freilich's long-handled grocery grippers, allowing him to reach to the highest shelf and pull down a box of ceral...purple ribbons on a door, meaning someone had died in that house...pouring Morton salt on the flat summer slags that left silver trails across the bricks...Quaker Oats...bathtub-shaped Hudson cars...the big truckspraying everything, including me, with mosquito poison...cat's-eye marbles in the dirt...Bono's fruit and vegtable bus...on a winter morning, a slow white plug of cream pushing up the cap of the milk bottle on our front step...the bread man...the rag man...the rag man's horse, itself slow and drooping as a sack of rags, as if every clop upon the street would be its last...the ragman's mournful warbling bleat: 'Raaaaaaags!' ...the sad, slow syncopation passing George, heading for Kohn, Noble, Buttonwood, Westward...'Raaaaaaags!' clop-clop, 'Raaaaaaags!' clop-clop...." (p.45)

Based upon the context clues, the word "syncopation" means variety of rhythms.

"It was just harmless, boy horseplay, but sometimes I carried itfar enough so that Bill wound up crying. I think nowthat in making him cry, I was fabricating an outlet for tender feelings toward my little brother that found no expression in the natural course of events." (p.72)

Based upon the context clues, the word "fabricating" means to Invent or create typically with crafty intent.


Created with images by pumukel - "rope knot link" • EllWi - "leech leech therapy medicinal leech" • makamuki0 - "antique car abandoned inside" • exfordy - "Steel sculpture of Che Guevara"

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