Mikey, the Ninja Turkey: A Thanksgiving Tale, As Told By My Five Year Old Son

Let’s switch gears to something more lighthearted with Thanksgiving just around the corner. In a kindergarten class project titled “I’m Not a Turkey,” I sat down with my son, Henry, earlier this week to write a story about a turkey vying for freedom, intent on escaping the knife so as not to become a meal on someone’s table this coming Thursday. The first part of the project involved disguising the turkey. The second part of the project involved writing a story about the disguise. Henry chose a ninja.

For your listening pleasure, as read by me (dad):

I Am Not a Turkey, by Henry Pillow

My name is Mikey. I am a ninja turkey. I am planning my great escape tonight under the cloak of darkness. My stealth is my friend. I’m not going to be someone’s sandwich this Thanksgiving.

Child's drawing of a turkey in disguise
Art. “Ninja Turkey,” by Henry Pillow

Notes: A few things here: (1) I tried to sway my son to start this off with, “Hi-yah! My name is Mikey,” as in “Hi” with a martial arts twist, but he wouldn’t go for it; and, (2) despite my protests to have my son name the turkey Mr. Miyagi or Daniel-son after the 1984 martial arts film, Karate Kid, my son chose Mikey, so named after Michelangelo of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fame. Mikey, still an excellent choice, as “ninja turkey” plays very well on “ninja turtle.” (3) Lastly, there wasn’t enough space on his sheet of paper to build out a full plot summary, to which the remainder of the plot would have been based on the 1963 World War II epic film The Great Escape, starring Steve McQueen and James Garner.

What’s your turkey tale? Share in the comments below.

If you enjoyed what you just read, help others find it on the web. I’m no longer on Facebook, but if you still are, consider sharing it there. You can also copy and paste the link in the url above and send it to friends and family by text and email.

jeffrey pillow photoWritten by Jeffrey Pillow, author of the coming-of-age memoir in progress When the Lights Go Out at 10:16, which you can read on this blog as it’s being written. When the Lights Go Out at 10:16 is a story of growing up in small town America in the 1980’s in a teeny tiny town known as Phenix, in Charlotte County, Virginia. It is a story of life and friendship in the face of terminal cancer. Want to read more blog posts? Visit the blog archive. You can also subscribe to this blog to receive updates of new posts by email.

Photo by Peter Lloyd on Unsplash


Was not expecting the gobble, gobble, gobble in the audio. I literally spit out my coffee when you did that. Great story Henry! Writer like your dad!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.