Auntie Nom is teaching me how to fold a crane from Saa paper. Her hands are wrinkled but her eyes are bright and see well.

“There is an old legend from Japan …”

She stops and shows me how to make the next fold.

“I heard it from my grandmother.”

“No like this,” she says. And folds the paper for me.

“That if you fold a thousand cranes then your wish will be granted.”

Auntie Nom finishes her crane and looks at me. I will never forget the warmth in her gaze.

I hand the paper crane from the mosquitoes net and that night the breeze from the open window makes her dance across the moon, the star-filled night sky.
The other day I found an origami set that my brother had given me as a gift. I took out a piece of beautifully patterned paper and tried to remember the folds. What came back with each fold were Auntie Nom’s words as if the folds and the story were working together and to my amazement I could create the crane.

This prompted me to go searching for crane stories.

“Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes” is the story of a girl who died of leukemia. On August 6, 1945, when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, Sadako Sasaki was just two years old. Though the bomb did not kill her and she suffered no immediate injury, she developed leukemia when she was 11 years old. Sadako had heard that a person could make her wish come true by folding a thousand paper cranes. Wishing for good health, Sadako began folding a thousand paper cranes. But she died at age 12, before her project was completed, it is said, and her classmates finished folding her cranes for her after she died.

Children send in cranes they have folded in prayer for peace.
Sadako’s classmates also collected donations from schools throughout Japan and used the funds to create a monument to children who had been victims of the atomic bomb. Piles of thousand-crane chains sent by people from all over the world surround the monument. To people everywhere, the story of Sadako has come to symbolize the hope that no child will ever again be killed by an atomic bomb.

And more searching led me to

Such a wonderful project.

And here’s a link to : How to Make a Paper Crane”

Together we can all fold a thousand cranes and make a wish for a peaceful world come true.


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