Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories Yertle the Turtle, Lines 1 - 6 Summary
Ah, this is the nicest kind of beginning isn't it? We're transported to the far-away Island of Sala-ma-Sond, which sounds a lot more appealing than Barbados, if you ask us.
The turtles that live here might not drive Maseratis, but they're happy with their simple lot in life, as long as they've got warm water, enough food, and at least a little space for diving into green water with a self-satisfied look on their faces.
It would be easy to skip on past this little detail, but let's stop for a moment and think about why Seuss wants us to know this place is "far-away." First, you probably notice that this is a very common technique in folklore, so in choosing the term, Seuss is sending out a flagged email for our mental inboxes that says, "FYI, folks, this story is a part of a greater tradition that's largely reflective of the human condition." Or something like that.
So why is this technique so popular in classical storytelling? Because it forces us out of our everyday, humdrum, just-walking-the-line mentality. It allows us to suspend all of our little hang ups and stresses on a neat hook right by the door and be carried away by these dark green waters.
The places the current takes us are silly and adventurous, of course. But they also take us to a place where we can look back at who we are as humans without becoming defensive or blustery. Because we're not really talking about ourselves, we're talking about a bunch of turtles. So we can just have fun, right?