The other day an official-looking letter arrived for Lilia. I figured it was something complicated about laws pertaining to the disabled or a reminder about some piece of equipment that we haven’t yet paid for, or maybe news of a conference. I left it for my husband to open.
“Lilia has received a citation for a work called ‘Hana’ (Flower),” he said.
He showed me a list with names of students at various schools for the disabled all over Japan. Lilia was the only one mentioned from her school.
At first I thought she was being honored for a painting. She once won a citation for a work of art in a prefecture-wide competiton. But no. This was an award for poetry – the Osamu Yazawa Prize. My daughter, who could barely write a sentence on her own up until last year, wrote a poem good enough to gain her national recognition. As you can imagine, I am busting my buttons.