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Cranes Over Hiroshima
Words and Music by Fred Small
Performed by David Heitler-Klevans

This song is available on "Love Makes a Family"

This song tells the true story of Sadako, a girl who survived the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima at the end of World War II. Later she got leukemia from the radiation released by the bomb. The words at the end of the song are inscribed at the base of her statue in the Hiroshima Peace Park.

The baby blinks her eye, as the sun falls from the sky
She feels the sting of a thousand fires as the city around her dies
Some sleep beneath the rubble, some wake to a different world
From the crying babe will grow a laughing girl.

Ten summers fade to autumn, ten winters' snows have passed
She's a child of dreams and dances, she's a racer strong and fast
But the headaches come ever more often, and the dizziness always returns
And the word she hears is leukemia, and it burns

Cranes over Hiroshima, white and red and gold
Flicker in the sunlight, like a million vanished souls
I will fold these cranes of paper to a thousand one by one
And I'll fly away when I am done.

Her ancestors knew the legend - if you make a thousand cranes
From squares of colored paper, it will take the pain away
With loving hands she folds them, 644
'Till the morning her trembling fingers can't fold anymore.


Her friends did not forget her - crane after crane they made
Until they reached a thousand and they laid them upon her grave
People from everywhere gathered, together a prayer they said
And they wrote the words in granite, so none may forget:

"This is our cry, this is our prayer, peace in the world."



See more of our Song Lyrics based on Children's Stories

Many thanks to Two of a Kind for permission to display these lyrics.
© 1999 David Heitler-Klevans. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

© 1983 Pine Barrens Music (BMI)

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