The Darkness of Childhood

Voldemort and a League of Mary Poppins at the Olympics

Wasn’t JK Rowling’s reading of JM Barrie’s Peter Pan at the London Olympic opening ceremony absolutely spellbinding?

After reading Simon Schama’s review, I found myself coming back to one particular line:

No one does the darkness of childhood, its realm of startled pathos, its deep hauntings, like the Brits, from Alice and Peter Pan to Harry P.

I want my child to grow up surrounded by magic. I want that child to feel as if anything and everything is possible. But I also want my child to know that not everything is fairy dust and happily-ever-afters. And that is why I love fairy tales – REAL fairy tales.

Disney’s version of JM Barrie’s Peter Pan

What I mean by real are stories that haven’t been sugarcoated by today’s more modern translations. Everyone who has read my blog knows that I am a fan of Disney – a huge fan in fact. But I want my child to know more than the Disney version of tales like Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and Peter Pan. I desperately want to instill a “real” quality into my child – for that child to know without a doubt that no matter what an outcome happens to be in a situation or in life, magic is still real.

Arthur Rackham’s Illustration of Peter Pan

For me, that magic is Christ. His power is more magical than any fairytale, and to believe in Jesus is to truly believe in magic.

So yes, my child will watch Disney movies. Yes, they will be read the Grimm’s fairy tales and original versions of stories like The Little Mermaid. But they will also know the Bible – they will hear it and learn to read from it, realizing that those stories are not only magical, they are real.

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