IVAN OPENS THE BOX GIVEN TO HIM BY THE LITTLE SISTER OF THE SUN
“What must be, must,” says the Sun’s little sister; “Though she is more likely to eat you than you are to save them. You shall go…”
From “Old Peter’s Russian Tales”, Arthur Ransome, 1916
There are many, many versions of this story. Usually the hero – or heroine – is given a range of magical objects by some powerful helper; in at least one version – I think it is a Grimm’s one, but I can’t find it – it is a mysterious box, only to be opened in the hour of direst need…
sea is a womb
sea is a womb
dip and flow the small boat.
rock and rock
rock the black black
gold lace a-glitter
and rocks – the
rocks scrape her timbers
beneath the carved wave
lie monsters clawing at her base
From “She”, by C. Murray.
Available shortly from Oneiros Books.
“She picked him up with two fingers, carried him upstairs, and set him in a corner. As she was lying in bed, he came creeping up to her and said, ‘I am tired, and I want to sleep as well as you do. Pick me up or I’ll tell your father.’
With that she became bitterly angry and threw him against the wall with all her might.”
From “The Frog King”, the Brothers Grimm, 1857 edition.
FEAR DEATH BY WATER
“Here, said she,
Is your card, the drowned Phoenician Sailor,
(Those are pearls that were his eyes. Look!)
Here is Belladonna, the Lady of the Rocks,
The lady of situations.
Here is the man with three staves, and here the Wheel,
And here is the one-eyed merchant, and this card,
Which is blank, is something he carries on his back,
Which I am forbidden to see. I do not find
The Hanged Man. Fear death by water.”
T S Eliot, from “The Waste Land”.
I am not sure whether I am entirely happy with this piece. So I am leaving it as it is, for now.
THE PAGE OF CUPS
“From this arid sphere every discourse and every poem sets forth; and every journey through forests, battles, treasures, banquets, bedchambers, brings us back here, to the centre of an empty horizon.”
- Italo Calvino, “The Castle of Crossed Destinies” (Il Castello dei Destini Incrociati) 1973.
Final version, from previous post.
“Then which river is the longest, Tommy?”
Tommy burst into tears. “I don’t know,” he howls.
“Brave New World”, Aldous Huxley