Don’t miss the opportunity to see this beautiful and moving paper crane exhibit at the Library during the month of June. The display, to be found in the glass case located near the fiction collection, was arranged by YA Librarian Bri Johnson in celebration of the kind generosity shown to her by local teens during a recent illness.
Bri posted these words to elucidate this beautiful and moving exhibit:
All paper crane projects have a story.
Some are widely known, like Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes.
Others unfold privately, shared with close friends and family.
Paper cranes can symbolize peace, and inspire wishes. The gift of a
thousand paper cranes is legendary and powerful.
Mine arrived on a Saturday afternoon in March inside a small cardboard
box decorated with colorful well-wishes. I discovered the box on my
front porch, three weeks after I was diagnosed with colon cancer.
Imagine opening this box to find hundreds of tiny paper cranes inside!
It took a moment to understand what I had in my hands. Then it hit me,
and I realized the gift. I sat down, overwhelmed. I held the cranes in
small handfuls, dropping them gently back into the box, wondering who
made them. Then I noticed a small piece of paper on the bottom of the
box. “468 cranes for Bri!” the paper said. “Our goal is 1000. More cranes
coming soon!” Signed, Elsa, Jennie, Michaela, and Sarah.
Teenagers from the library. Favorite people of mine.
More boxes appeared on my porch. Little take-out containers with dozens
of cranes inside, adding to my special collection.
I found out later how big the project had become, how these generous
friends spent their mornings at the school library, recruiting help and
folding cranes using any paper they could find. I began to think of them
as the Secret Crane Brigade, spending their Spring on a mission.
Illness is humbling; wellness is comforting.
My wish, of course, is to heal. But I don’t think of healing in terms
of fighting. I think of healing in terms of caring. I think of words
like cure, restore, and repair. A cancer diagnosis doesn’t have to mean
war. It has to mean peace.
Mend and recover. It doesn’t make sense otherwise.
These cranes are here because people care. And that means the world to
I dedicate this exhibit to Wendy Jackson Hall, who wasn’t given time to
heal, and to Wendy Cooper in Vermont. I mailed you a tiny cardboard
box of cranes from this collection. May they bring you some peace, and
remind you that we care.