Lens-Artists Photo Challenge # 55: DREAMY

Thanks once again to viveka for inspiring self to try posting to the current Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: DREAMY.

Self is a short story writer (though some of her stories are over 50 pages!).

  • This Red Riding Hood Lamp followed her from one childhood home to another; self’s parents gave it to her when she was about five.

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She brought it to the States with her, when she left for grad school. And here it is now, in self’s home in Redwood City, California.

It was the perfect gift — one that nurtured her imagination and encouraged her to dream.

  • Here’s an image from the cover of Hotel Amerika, a literary magazine (based in Chicago) which published self’s flash, Ghosts. She loves the surreal, and so she loves the image.
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Hotel Amerika, Vol. 8 No. 2 (Spring 2010)

  • Finally, a landscape absolutely made for dreaming: Mendocino.
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Mendocino Headlands: April 21, 2018

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

Re-Reading: Mejhiren’s “When the Moon Fell In Love With the Sun”

Still one of the most beautiful Everlark self has ever read. The author, Mejhiren, updates about once a year. The most recent chapter dropped on December 2016.

Katniss, a poor girl from the Seam, has been whisked away by Peeta to be his servant in a palatial wooden house by a lake. In her utter loneliness, Katniss befriends a dove:

We’re the same color, just as I’d guessed; my skin a dusky dove-brown that matches her feathers as though painted by the same brush. “Are you mine, little one?” I wonder, daring a fingertip-stroke across her tiny head, and she closes her black-bead eyes in unmistakable pleasure.

It’s as inevitable as it is irresistible. I lean in, almost without thought, to brush her head with my lips, and she answers with a hushed, throaty coo that exudes sheer contentment. “Oh, I love you!” I whisper, my eyes beading with disbelief and joy and an overwhelming flood of affection for this first wild thing to reach out to me, to trust and love and care for the huntress who’s killed so many of the woods’ inhabitants for food and furs and nourishing bone broth. I should be more like my patient father but I’m too sad, too eager, too hungry for more, and I curl my free hand around my tiny sweetheart and bring her to my chest, pressing her gently over my heart.

Thankfully, this particular dove has waited a long time to tame me and doesn’t flail or strain or struggle at the sudden intensity of contact; rather, she curls her tiny claws in the weave of my sweater and coos drowsily as I stroke her in wonder, over and over again.

Just beautiful.

Stay tuned.

 

#amreading: About the Frog Who Turns Out to Be Something Else Trope

  • . . .  there is another very ancient Hindu legend, wherein Bheki, the frog, is a beautiful maiden who consents to wed a King on the extraordinary condition that he shall never show her a drop of water. Being faint, on one occasion, she is said to have asked for water, and he thoughtlessly giving her some, she immediately disappeared.

— Sax Rohmer, The Romance of Sorcery

#amreading: About Fairy Wives

  • In the legends and folk stories of nearly all countries, we find the enchanted-spouse motif occurring again and again, and some very curious parallels exist between such fables of the East and of the West; so that the idea of the fairy wife would appear to be common to all peoples, or traceable to some parent legend of remote antiquity.

— Sax Rohmer, The Romance of Sorcery

#amreading “Cinderella”: A Re-telling by Philip Pullman

“This is my bride!” the Prince said, and took Cinderella in his arms.

The stepmother and sisters turned ghastly pale, and nearly bit their own fingers off with rage and mortification.

. . . . . . .

At the wedding, the two stepsisters were keen to toady to the royal couple, hoping to share in Cinderella’s good luck. When the prince and his bride walked into the church, the older sister walked on their right and the younger sister on their left, and the doves flew down and pecked out one eye from each of them.

— from Fairty Tales from the Brothers Grimm, Re-told by Philip Pullman

#amreadingfairytales: “Little Brother and Little Sister”

from Fairy Tales From the Brothers Grimm, edited and re-told by Philip Pullman:

“Now you get into the bed,” the witch said to her daughter, and when the girl had clambered in, the old woman put a spell on her so that she looked exactly like the queen. The one thing she couldn’t do anything about was the missing eye.

“Lie with that side of your head on the pillow,” she said, “and if anyone speaks to you, just mumble.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

In Honor of #Folklore Thursday: Reading “Briar Rose”

from Philip Pullman’s re-telling of Fairy Tales From the Brothers Grimm:

The sleep was so deep that it spread through all the castle. The king and queen had just returned, and as soon as they walked into the hall they fell down where they stood. Their servants and attendants fell down too, like dominoes in a line, and so did the horses in the stable and the grooms looking after them, and the pigeons on the roof and the dogs in the courtyard. One dog was scratching himself: he fell asleep just like that, with his back paw behind his ear. The flies on the wall fell asleep. Down in the kitchen the very flames under the roasting ox fell asleep. A drop of fat that was about to fall from the sizzling carcass stayed where it was and didn’t move.

Sentence of the Day: from Philip Pullman’s FAIRY TALES FROM THE BROTHERS GRIMM

  • When the bird saw the vegetable stew coming to the boil with a dead mouse in it, he panicked.

— from The Mouse, the Bird and the Sausage, a fairy tale from the Brothers Grimm, re-told by Philip Pullman

#amreadingpoetry: James Merrill

Fed
Up so long and variously by
Our age’s fancy narrative concoctions,
I yearned for the kind of unseasoned telling found
In legends, fairy tales, a tone licked clean
Over the centuries by mild old tongues,
Grandam to cub, serene, anonymous.
. . . So my narrative
Wanted to be limpid, unfragmented;
My characters, conventional stock figures
Afflicted to a minimal degree
With personality and past experience —
A witch, a hermit, innocent young lovers,
The kinds of being we recall from Grimm,
Jung, Verdi, and the commedia dell’arte.

— James Merrill, excerpt from the long poem The Changing Light at Sandover

Sentence of the Day: “The Boy Who Left Home To Find Out About the Shivers”

from Fairy Tales From the Brothers Grimm, edited by Philip Pullman:

He had just sat down again when from every corner of the room there came black cats and black dogs, each of them wearing a red-hot collar with a red-hot chain.

— from “The Boy Who Left Home to Find Out About the Shivers”

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