A Love Story
One day, as you walked outdoors, you found a stone. At first you thought it might be a toad; but it was not warm, it was not slimy, and it did not quiver as you held it in your hand. You left it in your pockets. I occupied space. It had mass. But it was not an abrasive or obtrusive stone. You were not troubled; and the stone, in turn, was probably content. When you came home that night and undressed for bed, you took the stone out and set it on the dresser. It is possible, of course, that the stone watched you all night long. But then it must be remembered that the stone had no eyes. It is much more likely that it merely sat. It was contiguous in space. It was, if you like, a contemporary of yours. The following morning you lost the stone. You may have noticed its absence in your pocket. The stone may have sensed the increased distance from a source of warmth. But that was all. It is not conceivable that anything else could possible have been felt. I conjecture, of course. The tale is, after all, a fanciful invention, a playful variation, on the species of love.
My talented and exquisite writer friend, Candice Daquin, sent me this book. As I mentioned to her, I’m not usually a fan of fables. In my youth, I grew up with Struwwelpeter. While the stories, written to be valuable lessons, more often than not, were very frightening rather than helpful. Traumatizing, almost.
Even into adulthood, I’d steered away from books like these. I preferred to learn things through my actions rather than receive frightful warnings about consequences. Or at least, this is what I expected about most fables. Since I do enough damage to my psyche, supposing what events could occur, while telling myself, I’m just preparing for “if in the event,” I felt it was best to leave books like this on the shelf. Who needs to invite more drama into their imagination? That was my thinking.
Well, it seems things have changed. Or maybe I have? First, this was not a traumatic read, and second, the morals of the stories align very closely with my own. As it says on the back cover, these are artful feminist fables that highlight, yet camouflage well, the stories women have told around the globe for millennia. The characters were highly relatable, and at times, the words were infuriating. We are still dealing with much of what the stories share with the reader. But still, well-written, and more than once, I found a wry smile on my face after reading them. I think you might too.
If you are interested, click on the link to Amazon underneath the image of the cover.