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wishing_bone

The Wishing Bone Cycle

Recently, I posted my personal mixtape of fairytale and folklore selections: an eccentric list of fairy tales, folktales and other works, inspired (in the collating) by the eccentric collecting and publishing strategies of Andrew Lang. The list includes the poem/song below, which was included in The Wishing Bone Cycle: Narrative Poems from … Continue reading

Author : nike
Comments : One Comment
Still from 1975 film 'Yozhik v tumane'

The Green Fairy Book (a personal mixtape)

Recently, Gyspy Thornton blogged about the notion of fairy-tale mixtapes, an idea borrowed from Adam Hoffman’s discussion of Andrew Lang, and how to conceptualise the eccentric array of works pulled together in Lang’s coloured fairy tale collections. The always sparkly and scholarly Rebecca-Anne do Rozario blogged her fairy-tale mixtape here. The idea … Continue reading

Author : nike
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burn

sixty-eight (burn)

Our father coming in from the garden, or us going out to stand in the weedy patch of rhubarb and watch him cut, with a knife we were sure grew bloodier with each cut, the long pink stalks. The exact gesture with which he gathered the poisonous leaves in one … Continue reading

Author : nike
Wilhelm von Shadow: detail of fresco of the wise and foolish virgins. Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main.

sixty-seven (The wise and foolish virgins)

The parable of the ten virgins (also known as the parable of the wise and foolish virgins) was enormously popular during the Middle Ages. There are sculptures of the virgins in many French and German cathedrals, including the Notre Dame de Paris and Strasbourg Cathedral. Bach’s chorale cantata Wachet auf, ruft uns … Continue reading

Author : nike
Ellie Davies 'Into the Woods'

sixty-six (torchlight)

Last weekend, I had the enormous privilege of being part of a writer’s event with Kylie Kaden. During Kylie’s interview, she spoke about being a pantser, rather than a plotter, and used the metaphor of driving at night with your headlights on, or walking through the forest with a torch, as a … Continue reading

Author : nike
What happens when straight men write about lesbian experience ...

The first straw man (on writing about Others)

On September 8, Lionel Shriver gave a keynote address at the Brisbane Writers Festival that galvanised several people into action, commentary and anger. Yassmin Abdel-Magied walked out of the session and wrote about her reasons for doing so. Others have written in defence of what they saw as Shriver’s key … Continue reading

Author : nike
Comments : 8 Comments
richilde_title

‘Richilde’ by Johann Karl August Musäus’s (as translated by William Thomas Beckford)

Perhaps the earliest literary (or written) version of the tale English speakers know as ‘Snow White’ appears in a collection of German folktales that precedes the Grimms’ first publication, in 1812, by about thirty years. In 1782, Johann Karl August Musäus published his Volksmärchen der Deutschen, an early collection of German folktales … Continue reading

Author : nike
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Corinna Sargood illustration for Angela Carter's Book of Fairy Tales

Sermerssuaq

Sermerssuaq was so powerful that she could lift a kayak on the tips of three fingers. She could kill a seal merely by drumming on its head with her fists. She could rip asunder a fox or hare. Once she arm-wrestled with Qasordlanguaq, another powerful woman, and beat her so … Continue reading

Filed under : Fairy Tales , On Reading
Author : nike
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390px-Little_girl_with_dead_bird_mg_2968

sixty-five (sarasponda)

In 1747 the oldest daughter of a family named Valter had a child, a little girl, who died before her ninth birthday. Nobody remembers what she died of, or why she became a ghost, but there are various stories. Oma told my mother that she believed it was something to do with … Continue reading

Author : nike
Comments : 2 Comments
Picasso's Weeping Woman

sixty-four (1986/suffering machines)

The year of the fire tiger, which should mean that you rise upward: your energy is expansive. Halley’s comet reached its perihelion (its closest point to the sun), during its second visit to our solar system of the last 100 years. Bob Hawke was prime minister, and looked a lot … Continue reading

Author : nike
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