Thursday, May 24, 2012

Lost and Found

by Evelyn, Earnest, Anne, Ellen, Barbara, Gretchen, [Alice]

*[I was unable to post a photo today because one of the storytellers thought it was her grandson and would have been very upset if I took it away from her.  The photo prompt for the story is a baby making a funny tough-guy face and holding up his little fists.]

Someone took my toothbrush, and my house is flooded.  I've got to go get a lawyer. [This storyteller leaves the workshop.]

A boxer, ready to fight.  

That’s precious.  

Great grandchildren.  In the teens they get married.  All their parents work.  Grandma, would you babysit?  Whatever.  I might move out of town.  But that's why you have grandkids!

There’s nothing wrong with him.  [Storyteller holds up two fists and smiles.]  

[What should we call him?]

We’ll call him Charlie, and when he grows up he can change it if he likes.  Sense is making.  

[What do babies do?]

He’ll suck his fist.  Suck his thumb and crawl.  Play around under the bed.  

He’s playing hide and seek.  His mama is looking for him.  Where did she put him last?  

She looks in the closet.  She looks back where Charlie was born, in the nursing home or the hospital.  She’s looking the other way.   She goes to the water to make sure he doesn’t drown.  Keep children on a chain, almost, near the water.  Be careful with the little ones.  You’re right.

[Another storyteller decides to leave the workshop, to help the first storyteller who left to find a lawyer.] 

Check with the workers.  That’s where Charlie would be.

My little grandson is crying.  [The storyteller, who believes the baby in the picture is her grandson, says she wants to take the picture and go cry by herself, because her grandson misses her.  The other storytellers object, saying “That’s not yours!”  I tell them to let her take it.  Everyone settles down again.]

Mama should send out a message, but she doesn’t want to upset all those people outside picking cotton.

You can’t send out a message in the newspaper?  Isn’t that what you should want?  Senior citizens should have access to things.  Her telephone doesn’t work, but she’s an intelligent woman.  She can solve problems that involve babies and communities. 

I’ve been here for 27 years.  I don’t believe that this kind of thing could happen.  You could be picking cotton, and it’s way up there, and somebody needs help and doesn’t have it.  My telephone always works.  When they are off someplace else they [does a motion as if someone were chopping his head off].   There’s only one way out of here.

[Where else does Mama look?]

Mama looks under the bed. 

[The two storytellers who went to find a lawyer come back and join the group.  They explain what happened while they were away.] 

I have hired a lawyer because no one cleaned up the mess in my house.  The lawyers will get with the Federal Government and make them build a new place.  The Environmental Protection Agency might get involved.

[Storyteller whispers in my ear.]  I would like to keep this confidential, but I want to let you know that someone has stolen your baby picture.  You never know what is in her mind.

[I'm just letting her keep the picture.  Does Mama find baby Charlie?]

She should keep looking, start at the beginning, find a connection, a friend. A friend to help her is the main thing, get her another phone is all I can say. 

[So, her friend got her a new telephone?]


[How does the story end?  Does someone find Charlie?]

They do find him.  The mother is happy and loves him and feels a part of his life.  Baby Charlie is happy too, as long as he is familiar with people and spends time with people and slowly gets used to them.

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