Sunday, 7 August 2011
Sadako and the paper cranes
One of my friends invited me along to an Origami workshop yesterday in the Mitchell Library to learn how to fold a paper crane in memory of a girl, Sadako Sasaki, who died as a result of effects from the atomic bomb which hit Hiroshima in 1945.
When Sadako was diagnosed with Leukemia at the age of 12 she spent her remaining months in hospital where she folded hundreds of paper cranes and her friends and family brought them to her as gifts. In Japan there is a legend that if you fold 1,000 paper cranes that your wishes will come true. They also believe that Cranes live for 1,000 years.
After her death Sadako's classmates campaigned for a Monument, to honour not only Sadoko's memory, but also the other children who died as a result of the bomb.
This resulted in The Children's Peace Monument being built in 1958 and all of the paper cranes made at yesterday's workshop will be sent to the Monument in Hiroshima.
I was really rubbish at folding my Crane but thankfully an expert was on hand to help! The story was really sad but knowing hundreds are still folding paper cranes in her memory (and no doubt across Japan hundreds are folding cranes in memory of lives lost in the latest Nuclear/Earthquake disaster) adds a bit of hope and simplicity back into the world.