Beside an avenue near his Palo Alto home, Mr. Jue noticed a fine clump of green
bamboo destined to be uprooted in a street-widening project. In the culture of Mr. Jue's boyhood, the bamboo is a pervasive symbol, a gift from nature of grace and beauty-and, to the eminently practical Chinese, a uniquely useful item. This gift of nature was meant to be either cherished or harvested for use. He proceeded to rescue the bamboo from the indignity of the bulldozer and the waste of the trash heap. What more natural than that the feel of the bamboo in his hands should recall pleasant memories from his boyhood-and that kite-making should be one of them? Mr. Jue had found a new and consuming interest in life. He began making kites as he remembered them of old, eventually inventing new designs and adapting the old techniques to the materials at hand in his community. A soaring kite, beautifully formed and painted, with colorful streaming tails, is a striking sight in this increasingly mechanical and prosaic age. The children of the neighborhood flocked about whenever Mr. Jue lofted his kites and soon joined in the fun. Inevitably, they invaded his workshop and joined in the fun of making and painting the kites, as well.
Mr. Jue's personal diversion had gained a new dimension. Teaching children and
sharing their unreserved delight at a first launching was mote fun than merely making kites for his own amusement. And the sudden upsurge of interest in an exotic handicraft and constructive sport soon leaped the boundaries of Mr. Jue's neighborhood. Feature articles appeared in the newspapers of Palo Alto, Sanjose, and San Francisco. Schools and department stores invited Mr. Jue to give demonstrations. Hundreds of inquiries came by mail and telephone. The spreading interest in Chinese kite-making has encouraged Mr. Jue in his effort to bring an ancient and rewarding folk-art to the youth of his adopted land.
Number Of Pages: 51
Published: 11th September 2012