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Friday, April 17, 2009

The Imagine Game


Por ahí tengo, en otro lado, este relato que hice para mis nietos. La versión en español la agregaré luego.
Wrote this story a long time ago for my grandchildren. There are eight of them now.
“Let’s play the game, Koko!”
As usual, it was CP the one asking her brother to initiate what the five of them had come to know as The Imagine Game. And also as usual Xuxi had only smiled at Koko, glancing at him like saying, “Gee, I was wondering how long it would be this time for Kaké —CP’s other nickname—to ask us that.”
As Xuxi smiled broadly at Koko, Junior stared expectantly at the three of them and L’il Bean, the youngest in the group, did likewise not too far away.
The Game was not properly a game at all.
It was a trio of old Spanish ballads made into a lullaby. Silly phrases off an old fairy tale, some would call it a fable, modified every time the story was retold anew. Phrases that as their mothers knew well made no sense. Words in short that would make them laugh, precisely because they were absurd, long before they knew what absurd meant or were even aware of the existence of such a word.
More importantly, the game was basically just about anything the five of them could come up with every time they played it. As each and every one of them had found out, it was a learning tool. Because in playing it, they had also learned a lot —about each other, and about themselves.
Junior, who was no Junior at all, had been the one to teach them that the one day she had replied to Xuxi’s request that anyone say aloud a four letter word for care and affection.
“Nana!,” Junior had shouted at the top of her lungs.
And L’il Bean, who as both Koko and Cinnamon Panda had been ready to say “love,” knew that she was right.
“Not all four letter words are bad, as you can see,” Xuxi said.

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