FairyLand Revisited…

Apple Smoking In The DarknessWhen I was offered an apple as a child I would examine it carefully for pinpricks – convinced it may have been poisoned by someone…

…thank you Snow White for the fond childhood memories.

Folk tales and fairy tales have always been my favourites. Because I read voraciously as a child – and there was not the same wealth of children’s authors as there are now, I read every fairytale I could lay my hands on.

As an adult I now vet the stories I allow my grandchildren to read. There is nothing sweet about children being eaten by witches in a cottage in the woods — or indeed homicidal children pushing little old ladies into the fireplace. Anyway you look at it – you lose. Neither is there anything childish about sailors being lured to rocky places and murdered by mermaid-looking sirens …

Now I see these tales for what they are. Cautionary tales for the most part — tales that let you know what was expected of you as a little boy or a little girl… how to behave properly – what constituted real love – what would befall you if you behaved badly or incorrectly and, of course, all the varying forms the boogeyman might take to punish you.

Now, of course, we have “Neighbours” and “Glee” to fill the gap these stories have left.