Joseph the Flying Penguin

Joseph the Flying Penguin

A Story by El Mando

The local library was having a writng contest, and this is my entry. I hope you like it!



Once, there was an African Penguin in the Tulsa Zoo named Joseph. Joseph was born in the zoo and made lots of friends with the other penguins. He loved fishing, swimming, and putting on shows for the people who came. The only thing he didn’t like about being a penguin was that he couldn’t fly.

          He would question the other penguins asking why they couldn’t fly. “Who knows,” said his friend Tyrone. “It could be anything.” One of the older penguins, Darby, thought it was a curse passed down from the past. “We might have been fish evolved down from prehistoric ages!” Wilbur had told Joseph.  He had gotten so confused from all the theories that he didn’t know which one to believe!

          “The absolute most honest truth is that the way our feathers are can’t let us fly. But they are great for swimming!” Bella had told him later. “How did you figure that out?” Joseph asked her. “I had noticed how our feathers are differing from other birds.” she replied. Joseph then noticed how all the other bird’s feathers where fluffy and dry. He looked at his own wings, moist, flat, and leathery. She did have a point.

          Joseph sighed, “I wish we could fly, though.” Bella smiled. “Don’t fret; I’m pretty sure Eddy feels the same way. Ostriches can’t fly, either.” Eddy was the ostrich in the zoo. Then he had seen the zookeeper entering the area with lots of fish, which meant dinner time.

          Tyrone and Joseph stood together while eating their fish. “Someday, I will figure out a way to let penguins fly.” Joseph had said. Tyrone laughed. “But it’s physically impossible!” Joseph swallowed his fish, and then went into the water. Someday, he thought, I will fly. I promise.

          Joseph was determined to fly, for he had even promised. So he had tried many ideas, but they all failed. Jumping off the tallest rock and flapping his wings, letting himself get surprised enough to jump into the air, even plucking feathers off his rear end and sticking them to his wings didn’t work! Everyone laughed at his hind quarters and he was checked for a feather-losing disease, but he was still set on his goal. But he was starting to lose hope.

          The next day, Tyrone had given Joseph his extra fish. “Sorry about laughing at you a while ago.” He said. Joseph smiled, and then said “I think I’ll go for a swim.” Then he swallowed his fish and jumped into the water.  Then he noticed a little human with something that looked like a Komodo dragon with wings on the piece of cloth that was on his chest.

This had inspired Joseph for another idea. He had drawn the wings he saw on the monster. He had imagined that those wings would flap to get altitude in the air, so he had sketched a pulley system that would “flap” the wings for him. It would go on his back like those things small humans wore on their backs. He had then gathered fish bones, and moss that grew on the bottom of the pool when the humans forgot to clean it.

          He had tied the bones together with thin pieces of moss shaped to the base of the creature wing. Then he had done the same thing for the other wing, and then attached sheets of moss to make the wing part. He later stacked fish ribs to make the back piece of it, then added four thin pieces of moss. Two pieces for him to stick his arms through so he wouldn’t fall and the other pieces to work the pulley system that would “flap” his wings. After he had made sure the pulley system was working fine, he was ready.

          Later that day, he had climbed to the tallest rock in the area. Some of the penguins pointed and laughed at him. “Looks like Joseph is wearing a pair of doohickeys!” Darby exclaimed. But Joseph didn’t care. He yet felt really nervous at the same time! He closed his eyes, took a deep breath, and jumped. He heard all the penguins gasp.

          He aggressively pulled the strings that “flapped” the wings, and thought that it was the end. But he opened his eyes and looked down. All the penguins were staring at him. Then Tyrone started to cheer, and everyone else! He was really flying!

          All the humans watching him started to cheer, too. The zookeeper came in just to see all the commotion. Joseph cringed, expecting to be caged, tested, or dissected, but he just stood there and laughed. “I guess penguins can fly!” Bella said.  When he landed, the zookeeper gave Joseph a fish. All the other penguins started to crowd him and ask questions.

          “What was that?!” “How did you pull that off without injury, Joseph?!” “Do you know how dangerous that was you just did?!” Then Tyrone came and backed everyone away. Once they were alone, he said “Hey buddy, you did great! And do you mind making me one of those?”

          Then everyone came back to ask the same thing. Joseph smiled. “Of course! But I’ll need lots of fish bones and moss for all you guys.” He replied. So everyone worked together and learned how to make their own wings.

          Joseph had encouraged all the African Penguins to make their own wings. They had gotten so used to it, that they spread that art down to all their hatchlings and other penguin breeds. So when someone asks if a penguin can fly say “Yes and no.” If they ask why, then tell them this story.


The End

© 2012 El Mando

Author's Note

El Mando
Sorry about the double spacing. It was required to enter the contest.

My Review

Would you like to review this Story?
Login | Register

Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


Added on May 31, 2012
Last Updated on May 31, 2012
Tags: penguins, fiction, Mandy


El Mando
El Mando

I like going on the internet, drawing, & of course... writing stories!!! I sometimes am a spazz, though. I absouletly ♥ Super Smash Bros. Brawl & MarioKart. My favorite color is pink. I'm also .. more..

Prolouge Prolouge

A Chapter by El Mando