Friday, 4 April 2008

In Memoriam: Pinquo (By Joshua)

The little penguin named Pinquo was a very big hero, he saved everyone's lives in Sickle Bay in the story. It's not a true story about the very little penguin. He was a dear one. He was such a great penguin. He was so brave: remember, "Follow the penguins!" No-one must forget this story; it's so exciting, but comes to be very sad. A big earthquake happened, the earth shook. Pinquo yapped and made the other penguins go with him all the way down the street and over the hill. The people followed the penguins. Remember, follow the penguins! Then there was a tidal wave. A boat got sunk, an oil boat, it was a ship. The penguin got oil on him and it killed him. He was the best penguin, his name was Pinquo. They had to bury him and they gave him a special place. There was a statue which they built. Why did he go out when the oil was there, why? I'm so sad. He was the very best hero of Sickle Bay. Sickle Bay must never, ever forget this beautiful penguin.

I totally underestimated the impact Pinquo would have on Joshua. Anna coped fine and Abigail fell asleep just before the story got really sad, but Joshua (and I) cried for ages afterwards. We read the last chapters cuddled up in bed together, with a box of tissues close at hand, because I knew it was going to be sad. This is not the first time I've read a sad story to Joshua, but it was the first time he got really sad. (The story of Jemima Puddleduck, which we've read several times, has always gone over his head, for example.)

Maybe I should have made up another ending?? Straight after I finished reading the book he told me through tears, "I hope that's not a real story, a true one." I told him it wasn't and this gave him some measure of comfort but he was still very upset. We tried making Pinquo statues from Duplo as the townspeople did in the story, but Joshua was still sad. He said he wanted everyone in the world to know the story of Pinquo, and so I offered to let him do that here. It seems to have worked, providing some measure of catharsis. He's watching Play School happily now, anyway. I hope he doesn't have nightmares tonight!

1 comment:

mom24 said...

Oh...he is so sweet! It's hard to deal with sadness at this age, but this is a good teachable way to do it. Jefferson and I cried at Black Beauty's death.
His narration of the book is quite nice (I have to work to get Jefferson to narrate things he's read)! It's great that he has empathy and can feel deeply. Isn't their innocence just precious?