Dear Community of Kinmen,
We are a collective of Fulbright English Teaching Assistants inspired by this island. Our group includes Rebecca Lim (林芮), Andrea Hale (夏嘉蔚), Sam Jeong (鄭大鉉), Brett Burk (白瑞琪) and Ross Busch (比儒實).To share our experiences with you, we have decided to create a story series, "Kimmy and Kuku: A Kinmen Story," reflecting everything around us. We hope that you can enjoy these pieces with your friends and family and that through our imagination, we can share with you our perspectives about life on Kinmen.
Sincerely, The Kinmen Collective
Kimmy and Kuku: A Kinmen Story, Chapter I
Kimmy was playing in the yard. She heard a little voice in the grass. Kimmy walked to the big tree. Kimmy was surprised! She found a baby bird under the tree!
"What are you doing?" Kimmy asked the baby bird.
"I'm learning how to fly and fell down," cried the baby bird."
"Where are your parents?" Kimmy asked.
"They went to the forest to find a new home."
Kimmy was sad. Kimmy did not want the bird family to leave the big tree in her yard.
"Why are they finding a new home?"
"Because a man will cut down this big tree soon!" the baby bird cried.Kimmywanted to help the baby bird, but she didn't know what she could do.
"I can talk to the man," said Kimmy. "Baby bird, can you tell me where he lives?』The baby bird flapped her wings.
"I can't fly, but if you carry me up the tree, I can show you where the man lives!"
Kimmy gently put the baby bird in her pocket and began to climb the tree. Up, up, up they went! When she reached the top of the tree, Kimmy put the bird back in her nest.
"Thank you, Kimmy!" said the baby bird. "My name is Kuku! Look, you can see the whole town from up here!" Kimmy looked down. All the houses looked very small. She could see the mountains and the rivers, too."The house where the man lives has a red roof, a blue door, and green windows. Can you see it?" said Kuku as she flapped her wings.
"A red roof, a blue door, and green windows…oh no!" Kimmy said. "That's MY house!" As Kimmy looked out over the houses below she felt sad."What can I do?" She asked Kuku. "My parents think I'm just a little girl, they don't know I can talk to animals!"Kuku looked up at Kimmy.
"Just tell them about me," she chirped. "If they see that I am living here theywon't want to cut downmy home!"
Kimmy looked back toward the town below her. She knew what she would have to do. Kimmy turned to Kuku and explained her plan.
"When I return home later this evening, you can sing for them!Your melody will surely convince them that this tree is worth saving!"
Kuku nodded as she yawned, "I hope so." Kuku's eyes closed as she fell asleep. The sun was setting and it was time for Kimmy to hurry home for dinner.
"I'm home, mom! I'm home, dad!" Kimmy said as she opened the door.
"Something smellsvery good," said Kuku, waking up.
"Oh, it's my mom's pumpkin pie. It's sweet and very yummy," said Kimmy.
"Who are you talking to, Kimmy?" Kimmy's mom asked from the kitchen.
"What? Oh, no one," Kimmy said quickly. "Where's dad?"
"Your father is in the living room," Kimmy's mom said."Go tell him you're home."Kimmy went into the living room. Kimmy's dad was sitting on the sofa. Next to him was a big axe. Kuku gasped.
"That's the axe I saw the man with!" cried Kuku, looking scared and sad. Kimmy did not like seeing her friend scared and sad. Kimmy was angry.
"Hello, dad," Kimmy said, standing in front of her dad. Kimmy's dad looked up.
"Oh, hi Kimmy! How are you? How was your…"
"No time for chit-chat. We have to talk." Kimmy reached into her pocket, took Kuku out, and held him in her hands. Kimmy's dad stared.
"Hello!" chirped Kuku.
Before Kimmy could talk, Kuku started singing a song that told the story of the one thousand year old tree where his family lived.The wind carried Kuku's song through the living room, the kitchen and out the window. Then, Kimmy's mom and dad started to sing. They walked into the rain and began to sing and dance in the street. As Kuku's song traveled, all the moms, dads, grandmas and grandpas came out of their houses and started to sing and dance to the same beautiful song. When the song ended, everyone was happy and went home to sleep. The townspeople who heard the song would wake up in morning with the song in their hearts and be happy. From that day on, no one could cut down the big trees where birds like Kuku lived and Kuku's home would be safe forever.