Nina Jaffe’s acclaimed retelling of an indigenous creation myth about the birth of Puerto Rico, The Golden Flower, is available for the first time in Spanish. Her account of the Taíno’s legend draws the reader to the island before the Spaniards arrived. The Taínos called their beloved island, Boriquén. This is their story of how Boriquén came to be.
In the beginning, there is only a giant mountain above a dry plain without water or plants. A child walking over the flat land below the mountain finds seeds dancing in the wind. When he plants the seeds on the top of the mountain, a forest grows on the crest and in that forest, a large golden flower appears. Soon, the boy and his community reap benefits that they had never before imagined.
A joyful creation myth about the evolution of a beautiful island habitat, this picture book is also a celebration of the young boy’s quest, which encourages young readers, ages 4-8, to respect the gifts of the winds and the cycle of nature that bears fruit for the whole community. Jaffe’s adaptation was inspired by her encounter with a Spanish-language article by Carmen Puigdollers, “Cómo se formó la bella isla de Boriquén,” and folklore research in Puerto Rico.