Posts Tagged ‘Children’
Abdiel, the oldest of The Twisters, recently was infected with a bacteria known as Salmonella due to ingestion of contaminated food. Salmonella is closely related to the Escherichia genus and are found worldwide in cold—and warm—blooded animals (including humans), and in the environment. They cause illnesses such as typhoid fever, paratyphoid fever, and food-borne illness.
He is now recovering from a treatment of antibiotics until the infection is totally controlled. In order to help his recovery, we decided to have him for for the weekend, away from the storm created by the two other Twisters which are loaded with energy and naughtiness, if you understand what I mean.
Yesterday afternoon, I took the opportunity of taking a picture of Abdiel’s small hand while he was sound asleep. From this picture I obtained two results experimenting with my photo editing software—Pixlr and PicMonkey. As you can see, photography is lots of fun. Here we go.
Abdiel represents to my wife and me a son we never had. He fills our days with joy when he’s at home. Love is a wonderful word. I wish we had more of it in the world which is thirsty for this wonderful feeling. Good Day.
I was born and raised in Panama in Central America; that narrow strip of land that links North America and South America. This circumstance meant that my exposure to the English language was rather restricted. Even though I had the rare opportunity of studying in an American elementary school since I was six, I didn’t study English literature, as all students would if they lived in the United States. I studied Spanish literature instead.
During my high school days, I missed the opportunity of reading the classical American authors like Ernest Hemingway, Robert Frost, Carl Sandburg, T.S. Elliot, Tennessee Williams, F. Scott Fitzgerald or John Steinbeck, just to name a few. Then I started working and did very little or no reading at all, except newspapers and business administration and accounting literature. All my life I’ve been a “number man” or a “bean counter” as they are sometimes referred to.
After retiring and dipping my toes into the pond of blogging, I had more time to read and that’s when I started reading English articles, stories, poems, books, and so forth. Blogging led to me Linda Leinen, the author of a blog dubbed, “The Task at Hand”, a writer’s on-going search for just the right word. Her inspiring and well-written blog posts introduced me to the fine writers of the United States and abroad. It was then when I became interested in good literature.
One of her blog posts was about Carl Sandburg, a name that was kind of blurry in my mind. I googled the name and found out more about him.
Carl Sandburg (1878-1967) was a prolific American writer and editor, best known for his poetry. He was the recipient of three Pulitzer Prizes; two for his poetry and another for his biography of Abraham Lincoln. He attended West Point Military Academy for just two weeks, before failing a mathematics and grammar exam.
He wrote poetry, history, biographies, novels, children’s literature and film reviews. While living in Elmhurst, Illinois, Sandburg wrote three children’s books: Rootabaga Stories in 1922, Rootabaga Pigeons in 1923, and Potato Face in 1930. This inclination to write stories for children caught my attention and eventually decided to share with you one of his well-written stories.
I chose “The Two Skyscrapers Who Decided to Have a Child” because the witty title grabbed my attention. I’m so glad I selected this story, because it is so right for children and even for adults who never grew up. And I say this in a positive way, not in a derogatory way, for I believe we are all children deep inside.
Kindly lay back, relax, take a deep breath, and enjoy an entertaining story of Carl Sandburg—The Two Skyscrapers Who Decided to Have A Child. Here we go.
The Two Skyscrapers Who Decided to Have a Child
Two skyscrapers stood across the street from each other in the Village of Liver-and-Onions. In the daylight when the streets poured full of people buying and selling, these two skyscrapers talked with each other the same as mountains talk.
In the nighttime when all the people buying and selling were gone home and there were only policemen and taxicab drivers on the streets, in the night when a mist crept up the streets and threw a purple and gray wrapper over everything, in the night when the stars and the sky shook out sheets of purple and gray mist down over the town, then the two skyscrapers leaned toward each other and whispered.
Whether they whispered secrets to each other or whether they whispered simple things that you and I know and everybody knows, that is their secret. One thing is sure: they often were seen leaning toward each other and whispering in the night the same as mountains lean and whisper in the night.
High on the roof of one of the skyscrapers was a tin brass goat looking out across prairies, and silver blue lakes shining like blue porcelain breakfast plates, and out across silver snakes of winding rivers in the morning sun. And high on the roof of the other skyscraper was tin brass goose looking out across prairies, and silver blue lakes shining like blue porcelain breakfast plates, and out across silver snakes of winding rivers in the morning sun.
Now the Northwest Wind was a friend of the two skyscrapers. Coming so far, coming five hundred miles in a few hours, coming so fast always while the skyscrapers were standing still, standing always on the same old street corners always, the Northwest Wind was a bringer of news.
“Well, I see the city is here yet,” the Northwest Wind would whistle to the skyscrapers.
And they would answer, “Yes, and are the mountains standing yet way out yonder where you come from, Wind?”
“Yes, the mountains are there yonder, and farther yonder is the sea, and the railroads are still going, still running across the prairie to the mountains, to the sea,” the Northwest Wind would answer.
And now there was a pledge made by the Northwest Wind to the two skyscrapers. Often the Northwest Wind shook the tin brass goat and shook the tin brass goose on top of the skyscrapers.
“Are you going to blow loose the tin brass goat on my roof?” one asked.
“Are you going to blow loose the tin brass goose on my roof?” the other asked.
“Oh, no,” the Northwest Wind laughed, first to one and then to the other, “if I ever blow loose your tin brass goat and if I ever blow loose your tin brass goose, it will be when I am sorry for you because you are up against hard luck and there is somebody’s funeral.”
So time passed on and the two skyscrapers stood with their feet among the policemen and the taxicabs, the people buying and selling, —the customers with parcels, packages and bundles—while away high on their roofs stood the goat and the goose looking out on silver blue lakes like blue porcelain breakfast plates and silver snakes of rivers winding in the morning sun.
So time passed on and the Northwest Wind kept coming, telling the news and making promises.
So time passed on. And the two skyscrapers decided to have a child. And they decided when their child came it should be a free child.
“It must be a free child,” they said to each other. “It must not be a child standing still all its life on a street corner. Yes, if we have a child she must be free to run across the prairie, to the mountains, to the sea. Yes, it must be a free child.”
So time passed on. Their child came. It was a railroad train, The Golden Spike Limited, the fastest long distance train in the Rootabaga Country. It ran across the prairie, to the mountains, to the sea.
They were glad, the two skyscrapers were, glad to have a free child running away from the big city, far away to the mountains, far away to the sea, running as far as the farthest mountains and sea coasts touched by the Northwest Wind.
They were glad their child was useful, the two skyscrapers were, glad their child was carrying a thousand people a thousand miles a days, so when people spoke of the Golden Spike Limited, they spoke of it as a strong, lovely child.
Then time passed on. There came a day when the newsies yelled as though they were crazy. “Yah yah, blah blah, yoh, yoh,” was what it sounded like to the two skyscrapers who never bothered much about what the newsies were yelling.
“Yah yah, blah blah, yoh, yoh,” was the cry of the newsies that came up again to the tops of the skyscrapers.
At last the yelling of the newsies came so strong the skyscrapers listened and heard the newsies yammering, “All about the great train wreck! All about the Golden Spike disaster! Many lives lost! Many lives lost!”
And the Northwest Wind came howling a slow sad song. And late that afternoon a crowd of policemen, taxicab drivers, newsies and customers with bundles, all stood around talking and wondering about two things next to each other on the street car track in the middle of the street. One was a tin brass goat. The other was a tin brass goose. And they lay next to each other.
And now you know who Carl Sandburg was, and how he wrote short and tender stories for children and for all of those young at heart. Good Day.
During a recent visit of The Twisters, we removed the dust from an old plastic rocking dog we had stored and forgotten in one of our closets, and turned it over to Paola—the youngest of The Twisters.
She was jumping with joy, thinking the dog was some kind of horse and headed towards the saddle. Nothing beats the happiness of a child. Take a look at Paola riding the high saddle of the dog-horse.
Posted in Photography, tagged Birthday Party, Children, Chinese Philosopher, Family, Family Values, Festivities, Lao-tzu, Paola, Photographs, Photography, Pink Color, The Twisters on August 11, 2012 | 7 Comments »
Yesterday was Thursday, August 9, 2012. It was a happy day for the Twister’s family. Paola, the smallest of the bunch, reached her first birthday. Their parents were busy like squirrels organizing a party to celebrate the occasion. Early morning they came with Paola to take her picture taken. Somehow I’ve become the “Official Photographer” of the family. I’m glad to accept the distinction.
After Paola was meticulously dressed in delicate pink, I started the photo session. This is what came out of my Canon DSLR EOS Rebel T2i camera. Here we go.
Happy Birthday Paola. “A journey of a thousand miles begins beneath one’s feet.”—Lao-tzu Chinese philosopher (604 BC – 531 BC). Good Day.
Paola, the youngest of the three Twisters, came last week to the house for a brief visit. She was hungry, so my wife hastily prepared some mashed ripe plantains and eased her hunger.
While she was being fed by my wife with a small spoon, I saw the scene in my head, and thought it would make a good picture; so I dashed to my home office and fetched my Birthday Camera.
This is what I captured for posterity. When Paola grows up, she can go back in time and see with her own eyes how she was fed one lazy Sunday morning. As Stuart Spipahigil once wrote, “Photographs are moments, pieces of time that are captured to look at again and again.” Here we go.