Reflections on Tenniel’s Humpty Dumpty 1872

Tenniel -Humpty Dumpty 1872

Sir John Tenniel (28 February 1820 – 25 February 1914) was an English illustrator, graphic humourist, and political cartoonist whose work was prominent during the second half of the 19th century.

Reflections on Tenniel -Humpty Dumpty 1872

After the Bible and Shakespeare, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is the most widely-quoted book in the Western world.

It has been translated into at least 174 languages. Source

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Who was real-life model for The Red Queen?

The hookah-smoking caterpillar

full of wisp plumes and old photographs on glass –

Little Alice Liddel, a beggar child,

begs for a tale rowing down the river of dreams, ……..

Ripples of consequences drift down –

leaves, carrying metaphors,

drift by,

become pages in a book,

full of curious truths,

like a smile bending along the edge of the river bank, …….

so why did the Cheshire Cat have such an oddly-shaped smile ?

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As time passes the story of Alice, Lewis Carroll and Wonderland become “curiouser and curiouser” . CBC Radio Sunday Edition interviews both Vanessa Tait, novelist and great grand-daughter of Alice Liddel, and Canadian David Day, author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland Decoded.

To Listen to the full interview Exposing the curious world of Alice In Wonderland click  here.



The Stone that Wished to Know the Wind.

The Stone that Wished to Know the Wind


Once there was a small smooth stone that wished to know the wind. The small stone only knew how to sit still. It patiently waited for many years, till finally, one day in Autumn, a young boy came passing by. He bent down, picked up the stone and put it in his pocket. He kept the stone with him till the next summer.

There came a day, when the Summer was turning its head towards harvest skies; on that day, the boy, having told the stone his dreams, hopes and fears, flung the small stone high into the air above the laughter of the tree tops and the leaves singing with the breeze. The stone rolled and bounced among wisps of clouds and skipped by the rain drops that were waiting to be born. All around him was the wind.

The small round stone rose so high that he heard the stars polishing the evening sky with glitter and tear drops. Then he turned over in a mist of unborn memories, touched the seams of the horizon one last time, and then fell back down to earth.

Upon the ground he came to rest. He told other stones of his journey. A few had made similar trips, but not as far. Many called him a liar or mad, as there is only the ground. Some sat still and hoped to find their own way to the wind. Some misunderstood and ended up thrown in anger at windows or those who walked a different path. As for the small smooth stone, it sat patiently till there came a time when a feather fell down to join him on the ground.


Stone sits waiting – still,

On old paper, brown as time,

The breeze stirs paper –

Words, leaves of thought, curl upward

Towards the horizon.

Implied Spaces: Skinning the Wolf 1

Bookshelf ScreenWall
Implied Spaces – Bookshelf

You remember the story,

but do you ?

It happened a long time ago –

Hearing the story.

You know the story,

Do you ?

It happened –

A very long time ago.



It happened, once upon a time –

Someone told you the story.

Perhaps from Memory,

But what did they Remember ?

A Story,



Telling them a Story ? 

Was it with pictures ?

The Story –

You know,

A picture-book.

Did they move ?

The Pages


The Pictures.

– In Your Mind –

You remember –

A Red Cloak & Hood.

A Little Girl in the Dark Woods.

And there was a Wicked Wolf.

Do you remember now ?

Did you remember then ?

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Tales on The shelf


Look back,

There on on the bookshelf –

The Bookshelf of Memory –

She is waiting,

For you to take down the Book.




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Red Riding Hood on The Bookshelf


You remember the story,

but do you ?

It happened a long time ago –

A very long time ago.


You know the story,

Then ?

Let me remind you.


I loved the cloak –

Oh, so red.

I hung it on a hook,

On the wall,

near my bed.


A beautiful riding cloak,

Billowing, stitched edge.

That shadow filled hood –

So beautiful & red,

When by my White Pony

I most calmly stood,

Before I entered

The dark and terrible wood.              

Grandmother stitched

Secret words into the hood,

Oh, so read

By birds & shadows,

And by me –

Before I went to bed.         



Tales of the Brother Grimm 1

Many shades of red

Could be seen in the cloak & hood.

Many shades swirled about,

As from place to place,

I daily sped.


Some chuckled calling me

A little precious scarlet girl.

Others insisted that burgundy

Deep was plain to see.

Oh, so like the red wine sea,

The cloak waved & wisp’d.

Many, like sailors, offered me

A kiss.


That day, White Star,

My pony brave,

Proved lame.

A shoe unlucky,

He had thrown.

Hobbled he over

Grass and stone.


I would walk about

That day with a basket full,

For Grandmother.

You know the story

Then ? 



The basket was full and heavy,

Ready to give birth,

Bursting with delights –

Cake and wine.


Runes cast in sweet cake –

Oven luck-coins filled

With red raspberry’s song .

Baking Fate,

A joy-gift – wynn gyfu.

Ash-tree embraces yew.

Yew delights the oak.

Blessed by dæg .

Kissed by night.

Wild berry wine.

A bottle of starlight glass,

As white as bone.

As cold as stone.

Blessed by The Three,

Mother, Aunt and me.

A sweet bubbling spring,

The Dance-mender’s voice.

The gift of a Choice.

Laden with health-givers

I stepped into the woods.

Walking the twist-stepper,

My cloak and hood

Skipped and danced with me –

In sunlight they laughed,

In shadow they smiled.

You know what happened then.

Remember ?

Cloaked in leaves and branches,

Came the flower-giver.

The Wolf tread between

Shadow and sunlight.

Smiling, he bowed,

Joining the dance.

After much time

Midst perfume and petals,

I came to the cottage.

Hollow welcome awaited.





Red Riding Hood 1 MT
Red Riding Hood – An Old Tale Remembered



As you know,

Three oaks and a troupe of hazels

Encircle Grandmother’s dwelling.

The Hazels, sisters of the wood –

Stepsingers –

Dance by the moonlight

With Star-shadows.

Remember ?



Many know the oaks’ names,

Few know where to find them.

Huginn and Muninn

Stand to either side.

Centre stands

Myrthlin’s Room,

The Glass-tann,

Tho some call it

The Hanged Man’s Morning. 

That day none called out.

They smelt the Wolf

Midst my flowers.  

You know the Rest,

Do you ?

The bed, the gown, the cap –

Shadow grove eyes,

Flower-giver’s Song –

Then teeth and maw,

The Descent


Maze-madness ?

Finally the Riddle-dance.           

wolf spirit
wolf spirit

When is skin a cloak ?

When is death a birth ?

When is a knife a key ?         

How do you swallow

a Stone

With your Mouth closed ?

How do you

Remember the Story

Now ?

Well enough, I suppose.                 


It happened –

A very long time ago.

We three communed –

Grandmother, The Huntsman, and me –

With Rune Cake and Rights Wine.

When the second wolf

Came calling at the door,

All was prepared.

It happened, once upon a time –


Remember ?





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Notes on Process: You remember the story, but do you ? Between the lines of the story, how it is told, how it is remembered and retold is found inimplied space. Using the works of Clarissa Pinkola Estes, PHD. as inspiration, I started to build  images.  Choosing and organizing the visual compositions, I then created a structural pathway for the stanzas.  The narrative voices took on a power of their own. I initially thought it would all be contained in one post. The final segment will require its own post. The “wolf spirit”  composition was originally used  in a post on my main blog, Dark Pines Photo. Click the image to see the original post.