The Magic of Folk Tales

“The Dreamer awakes
The shadow goes by
The tale I have told you,
That tale is a lie.
But listen to me,
Bright maiden, proud youth
The tale is a lie;
What it tells is the truth.”
Traditional folktale ending

Reading mature novels with complex plots

One after another, satisfied I was not

Though the stories were real, the characters believable

I think I was missing the simplicity of fables-

Except that fables and folk tales of all kinds

Are not written to appeal to an adult mind

So into the children’s section of the library

I went in search of village belles and fairies

A book of Celtic folk tales was my first find

As I read through the pages, it did remind

Me of the myriad  folk tales of my childhood 

Full of morals that I had only half understood..

 

I went back  to the days when my companions literary

Were counselors of kings full of wisdom extraordinary

Their wit and presence of mind made for excellent

Stories to read, narrate or enact for amusement

Each story had a lesson in living embedded

Reality of life was through a fictitious tale threaded

 

 

Many Indian folk tales featured strong women

Standing up for themselves in a society dominated by men

 

In the era before Christ were some of them penned

In today’s world, their teachings are still relevant

 

I was not by any means confined, I must tell you

To Indian folktales, I read tales from other lands too

Some of my favorites featured a fool named Ivan

Who slept above the stove, in a Russian tradition

He always had brothers, wiser in people’s eyes

Yet when there was a crisis, Ivan the fool would rise

Since he paid no heed to the norms of society

Without any fear, he would fight the mighty

And emerge with a princess and a kingdom

He was simple with a good heart, so he always won

 

Trolls, gnomes and spirits from Scandinavia

Warmed my heart, taught me some trivia

About life in the Arctic climates that I 

Had no other reference to go by

 

Tales of the Iroquois and the Tainos

Taught me about people I did not even know

Bamboo trees, dragons and other fire-spewing creatures

Were of folk tales from the Far East, prominent features.

 

I could go on and on, pouring into this verse

My fascination for folk tales, for good or for worse

Instead my six year old I shall entertain

With folk tales from a lesser known terrain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s