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Thursday, 03 March 2011

Children’s Stories: The High-Flying Kite

By Johna Ferguson

(Twelve years ago I decided to try to write nursery book stories for American children about Chinese children - their play, their customs and lives. Below is one of twelve I wrote, but per usual they sit in the computer. Now you can be my readers.)

The sky is bright blue. A strong wind is pushing the clouds. It is a perfect day for kite flying. Wang Hao runs to his father. “Father, can we go fly my kite today?”

His father says, “No son, I must go to work. Wait until tomorrow.”

Wang Hao runs to his grandfather. “Grandpa, can you help me fly my kite today?”

Grandpa says, “No I have to see a friend today. Wait until tomorrow.”

Wang Hao runs to his older brother. “Wang Tao, will you go with me to the square to fly my kite?”

”No brother, I must go to school today. Wait until tomorrow.”

Wang Hao does not want to wait. He does not want to wait until tomorrow. He wants to fly his kite today. The wind is good today.

After everyone leaves, Wang Hao gets his kite. It is shaped like a big dragonhead. It is bright red and yellow. It has a long white beard. He takes his kite and goes out to the street. He walks to the square alone.

When he arrives he sees many kites up in the sky. There is a beautiful orange and blue butterfly. There is a big, long green fish. There is black bird. There is a long yellow and brown snake.

Wang Hao runs fast. He wants to get his kite in the air. His dragonhead kite just stays on the ground. He does not know how to make it fly. He is so sad. He sits on the ground and cries.

Just then, a man stops and asks, “What’s the matter little boy? Are you lost?”

Wang Hao looks up into the stranger’s face. He sees friendly eyes and a big smile. Wang Hao says, “No sir, I can not get my dragon to fly in the sky.”

The man looks at the kite. “I’ll help you. Here’s what you must do. Hold the string like this. Now run as fast as you can into the wind. It will fly.”

The man lifts the kite into the air above his head. Wang Hao takes hold of the string tightly. He runs into the wind. Slowly the kite goes goes higher and higher. Soon his dragonhead is flying up-up in the sky. Wang Hao is so excited he claps his hands in joy.

Quickly the dragon head takes off. The string is gone from Wang Hao’s hands. The wind is carrying his kite higher and higher. His dragon is flying all by itself way up in the sky.

That evening, Wang Hao’s father asks him, “What did you do today?”

Wang Hao says, “I flew my kite in the square. No one would go with me so I went by myself. I got my kite higher than anyone’s kite. Then I let go of it.”

“You let go of it?” his father asks.

Wang Hao says, “Yes. I wanted my dragon to go the highest. Oh, daddy, don’t be angry.”

Wang Hao is sad he lost his wonderful kite, but he knows when the wind blows, if he looks up he might see his dragon kite. His kite is free now. It flies higher than any kite in the sky. Wang Hao is proud. His is the strongest dragonhead kite in all of China.


[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Instructions for submitting are here.]

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post

Comments

A lovely children's story, Johna. I can just see the beautiful illustrations someone could do for it.

I am not a child (well, maybe my kids would say I'm in my second childhood) but I loved the story. It even has a moral about not waiting to do something important and a lesson about being free.

I agree with Lyn & Darlene, I have always loved children's stories & good ones are for everyone..It would make a beautiful book with many messages to everyone..Ever think of Scholastic; they do beautiful children's books & the 3 of us would love to be "blurbers." Am sending it to several parents and grandparents to share with their children..loved it...Mary

Oh this is great, Johna! The illustrations could be fabulous. Share with the world Wang Hao and his wonderful childlike wisdom!
You know there may be an illustrator who is already published that might love taking on this story.

(It made me want to build a kite with my granddaughter... like I did as a child ...out of newspaper paper and balsa wood!) Thanks!

Your story brings back wonderful memories of my childhood when we made our kites from newspapers, thin sticks of wood and my mothers old sheet for the tail.

If they crashed, we'd just make another from pieces salvaged from the earlier ones. What spirit and energy we had - may we always enjoy life's simple pleasures and may your kite always fly high.
Joe

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