Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Green (10/22/09)
TITLE: A Gift of Green to a Silent Boy
By Coleene VanTilburg
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Today I am sick and my ears really hurt. I have to go on the train with Mum. We have to go a long way to get to the big city where the special doctor is. I am scared of so many people. I fall asleep on the train. Mum carries me many blocks to the doctor’s office. We have to sit and wait a long time. I look at picture books and magazines from far away places. I am hungry and my ear is hurting. Mum is tired too. The doctor is old like Opa. His hands are as big as a futbol and he smells funny. Mum helps me take off my sweater and I get really cold. My mum and the doctor are talking but I can not hear very well or understand. My mum has one of those funny looks on her face like she might cry. The doctor leaves the room and then another lady comes and gives me a shot where I sit. Now I am crying again and I don’t think I will ever stop. The lady gives me a green apple sucker. Mum carries me back to the train station. It is now night time and there are too many scary people.
In three days I feel better, but Mum’s voice still sounds funny. One day, my Pops came home from futbol early, and he had a lot of papers. My brother said we were going to move. I could not understand and I could not make words to ask questions. I had words in my head, but I did not know how to make them come out.
Then one day my family went into the city again. There were lots of people and I held on to my Mum’s green ruffled skirt while my brother played with my cousins. Everybody had to get their picture taken. I heard that word again…move…move to
“A meer ee ka…Ameerika.”
We would go one more time to the big city and I saw the plane. It was the biggest thing I had ever seen. I was so scared. We had to fly over the ocean. I got to see out the window. My ear hurt very badly. I slept a lot because when I woke up, it was dark. When we had taken the picture in the big city, everybody got a card. My Pops said it was very important, it was our green card. Of course it was green. I also saw them talking and heard a word called “pon-sir”. I did not know what this word was.
Soon we were in “Ameerika” and it was scary because now they spoke funny and Mum and Pops didn’t understand either. I learned what a “pon-sir” was. It was a church. The people there were nice and gave us food and helped us find a flat to live in. Pops and Mum would go there to learn “Ameerikan” words and I liked to hide in the long benches with song books. A lady would come and play music on an organ. She would show me the keys and show me the song book and what the funny writing and lines meant. She would place my hand on the keys and I could feel the music inside my body. The music made me so happy and I felt this is how I could talk. The lady told my Mum I had a special gift. I wonder when she will give it to me?
One day I got to go to a party where people put there hands on their heart and said words that were important and everyone was happy. Pops said I did not need my green card any more. He told me I was now a “seeta sen.” Oh no, another funny word. I still do not talk too much, but I get to play futbol on the big green field just like Pops. I keep my green card inside my favorite song book and tomorrow I am going to play the piano at a place called the “Cristoll Katheedroll.” I hope there are not too many people.
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