Sunday, April 4, 2010
Hurrah for mythical creatures. Hurray for the imagination that creates such wonderful stories through books, films, and art.
When I was a child, my father plucked a thorn from a rose stem, stuck the flat side to my head and said, “There, you’re a unicorn.” What magic there was in those words. I was four. Around the same time I saw Sleeping Beauty for the first time. Though she was the antagonist, I saw the beauty in that animated fire-breathing creature that existed within Malificent’s being. It seemed that the power of a thorn had transformed mad faerie to dragon.
I’ve loved unicorns and dragons ever since. When I was in college, I attended a renaissance faire and chanced upon “Lancelot”, a unicorn (a goat bred with one horn). He was traveling the renfest circuit, and making quite a hit with the crowds. Love at first site. He trotted over to me and, yes, plopped his head down in my lap and sat contentedly. No laughing out there~seriously.
This week, I am consumed with a sense of wonder for those things the modern world considers mythological. The Greek and Roman gods, creatures, King Arthur, etc. I’ve skulked around caves in Cymry (Wales) and Cornwall (England), and can verily imagine such beings and beasts. Such architectural marvels as exist in some of the most remote areas of the world give me cause to wonder at their creation.
Of course, that leads me to simultaneously marvel a the commonalities in folk tales around the world. From faerie tales, to pour-quoi tales, there exist many common factors. Giants, beasts, dragons, angels, sea monsters, treasures, fey, miracles.
So, tell me, dear readers, what creatures do you believe in? What creatures or tales inspire a sense of wonder in you?