Naomi Shihab Nye (b. 1952), “Wandering Around an Albuquerque Airport Terminal.” I think this poem may be making the rounds, this week, but that’s as it should be. (via oliviacirce)
After learning my flight was detained 4 hours,
I heard the announcement:
If anyone in the vicinity of gate 4-A understands any Arabic,
Please come to the gate immediately.
Well—one pauses these days. Gate 4-A was my own gate. I went there.
An older woman in full traditional Palestinian dress,
Just like my grandma wore, was crumpled to the floor, wailing loudly.
Help, said the flight service person. Talk to her. What is her
Problem? we told her the flight was going to be four hours late and she
I put my arm around her and spoke to her haltingly.
Shu dow-a, shu- biduck habibti, stani stani schway, min fadlick,
Sho bit se-wee?
The minute she heard any words she knew—however poorly used—
She stopped crying.
She thought our flight had been canceled entirely.
She needed to be in El Paso for some major medical treatment the
Following day. I said no, no, we’re fine, you’ll get there, just late,
Who is picking you up? Let’s call him and tell him.
We called her son and I spoke with him in English.
I told him I would stay with his mother till we got on the plane and
Would ride next to her—Southwest.
She talked to him. Then we called her other sons just for the fun of it.
Then we called my dad and he and she spoke for a while in Arabic and
Found out of course they had ten shared friends.
Then I thought just for the heck of it why not call some Palestinian
Poets I know and let them chat with her. This all took up about 2 hours.
She was laughing a lot by then. Telling about her life. Answering
She had pulled a sack of homemade mamool cookies—little powdered
Sugar crumbly mounds stuffed with dates and nuts—out of her bag—
And was offering them to all the women at the gate.
To my amazement, not a single woman declined one. It was like a
Sacrament. The traveler from Argentina, the traveler from California,
The lovely woman from Laredo—we were all covered with the same
Powdered sugar. And smiling. There are no better cookies.
And then the airline broke out the free beverages from huge coolers—
Non-alcoholic—and the two little girls for our flight, one African
American, one Mexican American—ran around serving us all apple juice
And lemonade and they were covered with powdered sugar too.
And I noticed my new best friend—by now we were holding hands—
Had a potted plant poking out of her bag, some medicinal thing,
With green furry leaves. Such an old country traveling tradition. Always
Carry a plant. Always stay rooted to somewhere.
And I looked around that gate of late and weary ones and thought,
This is the world I want to live in. The shared world.
Not a single person in this gate—once the crying of confusion stopped
—has seemed apprehensive about any other person.
They took the cookies. I wanted to hug all those other women too.
This can still happen anywhere.
Not everything is lost.
I made my three-year-old niece her first convention/Halloween costume this year. If you ask her who she is dressed as, she’ll reply, “Tiny Princess Captain America!”
On Halloween, we discovered that if you point to a kid in a Captain America costume and ask her who he’s dressed as, she will also reply, “Tiny Princess Captain America!”
ETA: I just added a post about how to make Tiny Princess Captain America!
From here on out, Steve shall be known as “Tiny Princess Captain America.” If Tiny Princess Captain America says they’re all Tiny Princess Captain America, who am I to argue?
I adore that little tiara.
This is the most adorable thing. Look at her!
This makes me smile so fucking much.
I picture Tony being more than happy to call Steve “Tiny princess Captain America.” With or without being prompted to do so.
I picture Steve being perfectly okay with it, especially after the day he runs into Tiny Princess Captain America, trick-or-treating in the city along with a bunch of other kids. And she kinda stops in the crowd, and gets this great big smile on her face, and bolts down the sidewalk and up to him, and she just can’t say anything because she’s just in AWE.
So Steve crouches down and says, “You look just like me!”, and she beams even brighter, as if that’s even possible. Then Steve remembers that time Thor told him about how much he loves his little-girl fans, and how when he meets them he lets them “hold” Mjolnir, and also Steve thinks about Thor’s room full of little girl drawings at Stark Tower. (Yes, I *did* just manage to connect this with that Littlest Thor Fangirl post that went around a while ago.) Normally Steven doesn’t get recognized quite like the rest of the Avengers when he’s not in uniform except by elderly folks who remember him from the old days, but since the attack on New York, plenty of younger people and kids spot him on the street out of uniform and know him, just like this little girl.
So Steve asks, “What’s your name?” To which she finally says, “Tiny Princess Captain America!” And he laughs, and then whispers, “I meant your secret identity.” So she tells him, and gives him a big hug, and then runs off to rejoin the other trick-or-treaters.
A week later, she gets a letter in the mail from Stark Tower, and when she opens it she gasps, because it’s a drawing of Captain America and Tiny Princess Captain America fighting bad guys and saving the world together.
I had to.
And now, a response from Tiny Princess Captain America, via her mom:
“She was HILARIOUS when I gave her a printout of the fanart. The first thing she asked was, “What am I doing with my elbow?” Then there were more questions such as, “What are we doing?”, “Are the bad guys sort of like pasta?”, “Is he poking me?”, and “Why isn’t he wearing a dress?” This went on for about half an hour. You know how she is. But she absolutely loved it and it is now standing up on her art easel.
“She decided she wanted to draw a picture for the nice person who drew a picture for her. Tiny Princess Captain America is helping Big Tiny Princess Captain America fight the bad guys all around them. They are both holding their shields and TPCA of course has her signature dress of ruffly tiers. Bonus random balloon, too.
“Next up she decided that she wanted to draw TPCA’s friend Tiny Princess Thor, helping Big Tiny Princess Thor fight the bad guys. This time they have some helpers - butterflies, puppies, and ballet dancers.”
STRUGGLES. TO. BREATHE.
i just experienced a spontaneous full body writhe.
i never thought i’d ever say that in a non-sexual way.
GUYS. THIS IS A COSPLAY. NOT FILMING PICTURES
BBC should note all of the confusion and hire Matt & Matt as decoys.