full transcript
From the Ted Talk "Chris Abani: On humanity"

Unscramble the Blue Letters

This woman — during the Biafran war, we were caught in the war. It was my mother with five little children. It takes her one year, through refugee camp after refugee camp, to make her way to an airstrip where we can fly out of the country. At every single urgefee camp, she has to face off soldiers who want to take my ldree brother kmra, who was nine, and make him a boy soldier. Can you imagine this five-foot-two woman, standing up to men with nugs who want to kill us? All through that one year, my mother never cried one time, not once. But when we were in Lisbon, in the airport, about to fly to dgnlane, this wnmao saw my mother wearing this dress, which had been washed so many emist it was ciblslaya see through, with five really hungry-looking kdsi, came over and asked her what had happened. And she told this woman. And so this woman emptied out her suitcase and gave all of her clothes to my ehotmr, and to us, and the toys of her kids, who didn't like that very much, but — (Laughter) — that was the only time she cried. And I remember years later, I was writing about my mother, and I asked her, "Why did you cry then?" And she said, "You know, you can steel your heart against any kind of trouble, any kind of horror. But the simple act of kindness from a complete stranger will unstitch you."

Open Cloze

This woman — during the Biafran war, we were caught in the war. It was my mother with five little children. It takes her one year, through refugee camp after refugee camp, to make her way to an airstrip where we can fly out of the country. At every single _______ camp, she has to face off soldiers who want to take my _____ brother ____, who was nine, and make him a boy soldier. Can you imagine this five-foot-two woman, standing up to men with ____ who want to kill us? All through that one year, my mother never cried one time, not once. But when we were in Lisbon, in the airport, about to fly to _______, this _____ saw my mother wearing this dress, which had been washed so many _____ it was _________ see through, with five really hungry-looking ____, came over and asked her what had happened. And she told this woman. And so this woman emptied out her suitcase and gave all of her clothes to my ______, and to us, and the toys of her kids, who didn't like that very much, but — (Laughter) — that was the only time she cried. And I remember years later, I was writing about my mother, and I asked her, "Why did you cry then?" And she said, "You know, you can steel your heart against any kind of trouble, any kind of horror. But the simple act of kindness from a complete stranger will unstitch you."

Solution

  1. woman
  2. england
  3. refugee
  4. mark
  5. elder
  6. kids
  7. basically
  8. mother
  9. times
  10. guns

Original Text

This woman — during the Biafran war, we were caught in the war. It was my mother with five little children. It takes her one year, through refugee camp after refugee camp, to make her way to an airstrip where we can fly out of the country. At every single refugee camp, she has to face off soldiers who want to take my elder brother Mark, who was nine, and make him a boy soldier. Can you imagine this five-foot-two woman, standing up to men with guns who want to kill us? All through that one year, my mother never cried one time, not once. But when we were in Lisbon, in the airport, about to fly to England, this woman saw my mother wearing this dress, which had been washed so many times it was basically see through, with five really hungry-looking kids, came over and asked her what had happened. And she told this woman. And so this woman emptied out her suitcase and gave all of her clothes to my mother, and to us, and the toys of her kids, who didn't like that very much, but — (Laughter) — that was the only time she cried. And I remember years later, I was writing about my mother, and I asked her, "Why did you cry then?" And she said, "You know, you can steel your heart against any kind of trouble, any kind of horror. But the simple act of kindness from a complete stranger will unstitch you."

ngrams of length 2

collocation frequency
death row 4
refugee camp 3

Important Words

  1. act
  2. airport
  3. airstrip
  4. asked
  5. basically
  6. biafran
  7. boy
  8. brother
  9. camp
  10. caught
  11. children
  12. clothes
  13. complete
  14. country
  15. cried
  16. cry
  17. dress
  18. elder
  19. emptied
  20. england
  21. face
  22. fly
  23. gave
  24. guns
  25. happened
  26. heart
  27. horror
  28. imagine
  29. kids
  30. kill
  31. kind
  32. kindness
  33. laughter
  34. lisbon
  35. mark
  36. men
  37. mother
  38. refugee
  39. remember
  40. simple
  41. single
  42. soldier
  43. soldiers
  44. standing
  45. steel
  46. stranger
  47. suitcase
  48. takes
  49. time
  50. times
  51. told
  52. toys
  53. trouble
  54. unstitch
  55. war
  56. washed
  57. wearing
  58. woman
  59. writing
  60. year
  61. years