About this Blog
"Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten."--G.K. Chesterton (as paraphrased by Neil Gaiman)What nonsense it is that modern society views fairy tales as stories for children. It was not until about the 18th century that this view was held in any major way, and then by aristocracy, not the common folk. Relatively recent taking into account the vast and intricate tapestry of the adventures of mankind.
What grain of value or use could have possibly lent them their longevity?
Fairy stories, along with their ancestors myths and legends, contain essential truths that are not always communicable through facts, and magic that suggests realities greater than ourselves. Fairy tales are medicine for the sallow realism of our times.
Spinning straw into gold is a timeless and powerful image. It struck me the first time I heard it and has stayed with me ever since. It involves a craft, or skill, in which one takes a common substance and transforms it into something new. In the case of straw-into-gold, it is not merely something new but something beyond itself.
How fitting that when someone tells a fabulous story we say he "spins a yarn."
I propose this is the storyteller's calling; to take the everyday and re-work it (it doesn't matter if we call it skill or magic) so that we see its brilliance for the first time. And, if our heart is true and grace is with us, that richness we manage to capture reflects a far-off gleam of something more than true, to which this world is but straw.
About the Author
"When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes."--Erasmus
"I left the fairy tales lying on the floor of the nursery, and I have not found any books so sensible since."--G.K. ChestertonCall me Christie. I am a sojourner in the land of Faerie, and a layman.
Other than a brief summer course on Irish folklore at the University of Limerick and a novice's study of fairy tales and myth for my undergraduate Honors thesis, my expertise is limited to what I have encountered with my imagination--on the yellowing pages of library books and in the pulpy scent of store-bought volumes (with a few scholarly works and, more often, the storytellers themselves acting as guides).
My area of study in graduate school was Arthurian literature; but since, I think, fairy tales belong to all times and to all people, I hope my shortcoming is forgiven.
I am a wife, mother, teacher, and aspiring writer living in Florida. My favorite fairy tale (if it isn't obvious) is Rumpelstiltskin.
I can be contacted at GreenInkling@gmail.com and look forward to hearing from you.