Art and Literature

Storytime Sunday, 03/04/12 —

A little story about a gorilla.  Appropriate for children of all ages. One slightly bad word towards the end.

The adventures of Johannes

Once upon a time there was a Mexican gorilla.  He was kind and fierce and loyal to his adopted mother who had found him in a steamer trunk that had washed up on the shore of Acapulco from a shipwreck of sailors stealing animals from Africa. The lady took the baby gorilla home to her little house and she gave him fried bananas, and she taught him Spanish. She named the gorilla Johannes.  When the lady got older, she decided to sneak across the border to America where she could earn more money to send to her sister in Oaxaca and she and Johannes ran and ran across the desert, and Johannes carried her on her shoulders and the soldiers and the mean guy- coyotes who try to steal your money and make you a slave said “oh let’s not mess with that lady — she has a gorilla for a son.”  During the journey Johannes hurt his paw, and his mother said “Don’t worry Johannes – you will become a writer and tell of what you have seen, and you are strong enough for 10 men already and with words you will be even stronger.” “Ok “said Johannes, “then I guess I’d better go to university to become a writer”.

He did. Many strange animals taught many frightening subjects at the university, and one of the most frightening animals of all was the Russian bear. She was large and old and knew very large words and would growl and you would have to go to her office hours in a cave at the side of the mountain.  Johannes decided she would be his teacher because she was so frightening.  He figured she couldn’t be quite as bad ass as she made out, so he went to her office hours.  “What do you want.” growled the bear. “I want to learn to be a writer,” said Johannes. “Ok then read all these books,” she said and she threw huge books like stones at him.  He laughed because gorillas can catch things easily, and unpeeled the books like bananas and they were tasty – Rabelais, and the Koran, and world literature

“Yum,” said the gorilla, devouring the literature. “I will be your friend,” said the bear.  “Please!” said the gorilla, and only a few years later, there was Johannes giving his first reading. Tigers sat in the front row and his mother was there, and all his friends. The bear sat at the back, and she told everyone ”I knew he could do it because he was not afraid; he braved the cave and the desert and the sea.”

His mother nodded. “Si,” she said.  “He did all that and more.”

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