17 October 2014

Published October 15, 2014 by rochellewisoff

Snorkeling in St. Thomas

Undersea St. Thomas 4 Meme

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The next photo is the prompt. There’s much to look at. What do you see? Tell me in a hundred words or less. Then click the blue froggy guy after the prompt and link your story URL.

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Genre: Realistic Fiction

Word Count: 99

HIBAKUSHA

            When I was five my father opened our home to his widowed aunt.    

            “Why can’t Obasan live with her own children?” I whined and stamped my foot.

            “Pikadon took them,” said Chichi. “We are her children now.”  

            “But she scares me.”

            I soon saw past Obasan’s scarred face. Her stories delighted me. She taught me how to construct flapping birds and intricate shapes from colored paper.

            One night she lay down to sleep and returned to the source.

            Every year at O-Bon I honor her with mukae-bi, dance and sake.

            Her elegant spirit surrounds me like a thousand winds.

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Spring_Kusudama_by_lonely__soldier

Bon-Odori-Dance-2013

Pikadon.

O-Bon

103 comments on “17 October 2014

  • Dear Rochelle,

    I know exactly how you got from there to here. I love the origami picture that you included with your excellent story. And I love how you take us all for a ride when your imagination gets on a roll.

    Aloha,

    Doug

    Like

      • Unfortunately, everybody is guilty. When asked whether we prefer looks or personality, the majority of people will say personality, but unless we speak to them in a way that we do not see what they look like for a while, then looks will always have a say in it as well

        Like

  • This told so much.. when you mentioned the flapping birds I thought of the story of Sedako Sasaki .. and I almost expected the folding of the 1000 cranes.. but for most the end was different. I got the story even without the links but the added so much..

    Like

    • Dear Björn,

      I’m familiar with the Sadako’s story. Such a beautiful life snuffed out. I wasn’t consciously thinking of her when I wrote this. I’m glad you understood it without the links. I tried to find the shortest and most concise links so as not to bog down the reader.

      Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

    • Dear Alicia,

      I’m amazed at the things that can be made by folding paper. I, for one, could never get my fingers to obey so that’s one art form that passed me by. For me it’s anything but peaceful. Writing, on the other hand… 😉

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • Once again, or should I say “as usual”, your story is very touching. I would say, as your imagination kicks in, stories come out of seemingly nowhere, however, your imagination doesn’t kick in. It is always present. I am, as always, in awe. I bow down to your abilities.

    Like

  • Dear Rochelle, I have run out of adjectives commenting on your amazing written words. This story is Elegant. I said that to myself half-way through the piece and it just continued. You are master to my novice – WOW! Nan 🙂

    Like

  • I enjoyed the story and the links. I admire the Japanese culture for their resilience. I didn’t write to the prompt this week because I won’t be able to read other’s stories and respond to comments, but I did post an interview with Ben Franklin from the archives.
    You make a great story from a very difficult prompt.
    I’ll be pondering what to name you next week 🙂 See you then.

    Like

    • Dear Russell,

      I’m honored and pleased that you stopped by to comment. Of course I’m sad that you didn’t write for the prompt this week and I shall remain “nameless.” Whatevah shall ah do?

      I’ll have to read your Ben Franklin interview after work.

      See you next week. Y’all come back now, y’hear.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • I read your story and then read the links. Those words were in the recesses of my memory, long forgotten, thank you for reviving them. That is a legacy we should never forget so that it never happens again. It turned it into such a sad and moving story.

    Like

  • Beautiful story, and such educational links. Of course, I knew about the bombs, and I was sure there was still anger in the population, but I hadn’t known about the beauty and thoughtfulness the culture had developed in the aftermath. It makes me want to read up a bit more about the post-WWII culture in Japan.

    As an aside, have you read The Girls of Atomic City, by Denise Kiernan? It’s about the town in which the bomb was built, and how the workers were all kept in the dark about what they were doing. It’s a very interesting read, and is a unique peek into how government secrecy met up with the new working women of the day.

    Like

    • Dear Emilie,

      Japanese culture is something I find incredibly fascinating. The Asian mindset is so different than the Western.

      I haven’t read the book you mentioned. It sounds interesting. Another book I’d recommend is The Red Kimono by Jan Marler Morrill. It’s based on Jan’s mother’s time in a Japanese internment camp during WWII. And…Jan used to be a Friday Fictioneer. 😉 Well worth the read. I couldn’t put it down. .

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • I particularly like the detail of Obasan’s scarred face, and how it passes without further explanation; and the line “One night she lay down to sleep and returned to the source.” The phrasing conjures just the right atmosphere, I think 😉

    Like

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