Every day as she and her mother swam to school, Gabriella would press her face to the window of Stingray City ballet, and watch as the stingrays plied, jetéd and pirouetted across the floor. Gabriella’s wings wiggled with excitement. Gabriella longed to dance.
As soon as she was old enough, Gabriella’s mother signed her up for Beginner Ballet. It didn’t go well.
“Gabriella! You are far too wiggly for ballet!” the Ballet Master called.
Gabriella was crushed.
“I’m just a wiggler. I’ll never be a dancer.” Gabriella cried to her mother that evening.
“Ballet isn’t the only kind of dance there is, you know,” her mother said. Gabriella peeked her head out of the sand where she was hiding.
“It isn’t?” she asked.
“It definitely isn’t.”
Gabriella popped all the way out. Her wings wiggled with excitement.
Over the next few months Gabriella tried many types of dance. She tried to tap along with the starfish, but had nowhere to put her tap shoes. She tried hip-hop, but all the spinning made her dizzy. She tried swing dance with the sharks, but her wings were too slippery. Gabriella kept trying. Flamenco. Folk. Line Dancing. She even tried to Polka. Nothing felt quite right.
Until the day Leilani arrived. Leilani was new to Stingray City. She and her family had come all the way from the Hawaiian Islands!
“Leilani, why don’t you tell us a little about what you like to do,” their teacher said.
“I like to dance.” Leilani said quietly.
Gabriella perked up. Her wings wiggled with excitement. She could hardly wait until recess. At last it came, and Gabriella rushed over to Leilani.
“I’m Gabriella I love to dance too I’ve tried all different kinds of dance ballet tap hip hop swing I even tried Polka.” Gabriella said, without taking a single breath. She finally paused. “What dance do you do?”
“Hula.” Leilani answered quietly. “I’m too wiggly for ballet. And spinning makes me dizzy. I wanted to try tap, but didn’t know where to put my shoes.”
Gabriella could hardly believe her ears. “I’m too wiggly for ballet, too!”
“Hula will be just right for you, then. Come on, I’ll show you how!”
Leilani’s wings wiggled with excitement.
And so did Gabriella’s.
**Send me any three (clean!) words, and I'll create a poem, short story or snippet with your words!**