I‘ve decided to join in and write a 150-word story for kids inspired by a GIF. To find out more about this contest and its generous creators and prize donors, click here. The above GIF inspired me to write about the Sakura, or cherry blossoms. When we visited Japan, we learned these blossoms are symbolic of beauty, mortality and renewal. Those themes inspired my story, which I hope embodies them all. Okay, without further ado, here is my 2022 entry which comes in at 147 words:
Last spring, our bench became a magic portal.
“Under this canopy of cherry blossoms, we could be anywhere in the world,” Grandma said. “Tokyo, Paris, Portland, or Washington, D.C.–“
“Can we visit Tokyo?” I blurted.
She laughed and plucked a pink blossom from my hair. “Squeeze my hand, and we’ll go together.”
“We’re in the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace. Straight ahead is Edo Castle, built over 500 years ago. Cherry blossoms, or Sakura, dot the water’s edge.”
As she’d painted pictures with her words, springtime Tokyo unfolded before my eyes.
From our bench, we visited ten cities before the last blossom had fallen.
Today, as I approach the empty bench, my heart explodes with memories of Grandma.
I snuggle my puppy Sakura who sneezes as a drifting blossom tickles her nose.
I laugh, and whisper in her tiny ear, “Where should we go first?”