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  • Throwback Thursday: The 1% Fairy Godmother Strata by Janet Bowdan

    Editor's Note: Today's Throwback Thursday is a classic tale as seen from a different perspective that you may not expect. Enjoy! If you ask me, they get more credit than they deserve swooping down at the last minute with a wand and a fancy dress like that’s going to solve all the world’s problems. Where have they been while the rest of us are struggling to get the day’s work done? Sure, they came to the naming party, brought a gift, something useful like “the voice of a lark” or “tresses as gold as wheat,” flutter of wings, wave of magic wand, bye-bye, see you in 20 years or so once you’ve grown up and gotten interesting. By which they mean ripe for romance with a side order of toppling the status quo just to set it right up again claiming to be better at it than the previous lot. Different, maybe. Less experienced, sure. And okay, let’s say our fairy godmother pops in, rights a wrong, restores the lost heiress to her family and high position, throwing in a makeover while she’s at it: where was everybody else all those years watching as the wicked stepmother abuses her, the oblivious dad neglects her, the family she doesn’t fit into bullies her? Assuming a small flock of bluebirds and a couple of mice were going to step up? Thinking that was going to be sufficient? Why was nobody noticing, or if noticing, why was nobody trying to help? How is that godchild going to turn out by the time the fairy g shows up—good, sweet, patient? What view of the world would you have, left to fend for yourself? Janet Bowdan's poems have been published in APR, Denver Quarterly, Clade Song, Verse, Gargoyle, Free State Review, Wordpeace, and other journals, most recently Meat for Tea and Amethyst Arsenic. She teaches at Western New England University and edits the poetry magazine Common Ground Review. She lives in Northampton, Massachusetts, with her husband, son, and sometimes a stepdaughter or two. Image by Emma Florence Harrison.

  • Phantom Reflection and We Could Be Lovers by Kim Malinowski

    The constructs of poetic inspiration and romantic love have been mingled for centuries, and Kim Malinowski’s works, Phantom Reflection and We Could be Lovers, breathe new life into this ancient pairing. Both are sweeping stories rendered in beautiful verse that will leave readers contemplating the boundaries that define the borders of the self. From the beginning, Phantom Reflection, a retelling of the book and musical versions of The Phantom of the Opera, captures the intensity of love and desire that pulses beneath the original plot. Malinowski’s version pits The Artist against The Man of Words as they compete to possess the soul of Christine. The poem unfolds as characters gaze into mirrors implying that the story about the three protagonists is refracted and reflected in the larger study of what human love offers to and requires of those who surrender to it. The poetry in this verse novel is beautifully rendered. Colorful brushstrokes and pools of ink become manifestations of the men’s desires and prompt the question “Does one sacrifice their art / for a kiss?”. Malinowski delves into the desires of Christine as she struggles to choose between two men who crave to own her. While she asks poignant questions such as “Oh, what is love but painting / a lifetime together?”, she also recognizes that she wants to “outrun / love’s terror” and wonders “Do feet that waltz alone do any less?”. The novel shines a blinding light on the obsessive qualities of erotic love while also striving to define the individual self through art, agency, and choice. Like the original story, Phantom Reflection explores the roles of the muse and the artist and alludes to the idea that all people wear metaphorical masks. Fans of The Phantom of the Opera will find much to love in the words and ideas of Malinowski’s novel and will rejoice as the female artist is empowered by the conclusion of the poem. Malinowski provides readers with another intense exploration of poetic inspiration and romantic love in her upcoming work We Could Be Lovers. This poem opens with a poet who is observing the statues and strollers in a contemporary park when a good-looking stranger passes her a closed umbrella, winks, smirks, and opens his own leather journal to begin writing as music pours from his headphones. The moment’s odd intimacy prompts the poet to think “we could be lovers”. What follows is a sweeping story that oscillates between their silent companionship in the park and recollected imaginings of their past lives together. She has been a healer and he has been a warrior. Past love, past loss, and past repetitions of survival echo through the poem as the poet explains “He holds me as if we have known each other for millennia. / He holds me like we have met only moments ago”. In the hour and a half that the strangers commune together on the bench, they participate in intimate moments through the shared act of writing. He glances over at her papers, and she wonders if her words might woo him. She imagines “our words dancing / syllables merging” and notes that “Words flow and halt mysteriously” as “The stranger and I scratch out / memories and love, / lie to ourselves, tell stories, / scream”. In each generation of their love, they are beset by demons, creating a tapestry that captures the turbulence and depth of passion. The narrative offers a stunning look at love and the way it is both defined by and transcends time. It also captures the beauty of inspiration, imagination, and creation with its metacognitive contemplation of the poet’s work. We Could be Lovers left me thinking about the intimacy that passes between strangers and how strange intimacy itself can be. The poem, which takes place over the course of one afternoon, is both small in scope and vast in its reach as it connects us to the ideas of our ancestors and the way that the enormity of love helps us to define the self. In one of my favorite passages, the poet says “I am beautiful, even in this thin place. / Not because he says I am beautiful, / but because I blaze”. Phantom Reflection and We Could be Lovers by Kim Malinowski will leave readers spellbound as they journey deep into the imagination and back again. The words and ideas in both poems offer readers new and creative ways of contemplating love, poetry, and the spaces we use to define ourselves as individuals and as connected pieces in the vast galaxy of human life. You can find a copy of Phantom Reflection HERE And learn more about We Could Be Lovers HERE Kelly Jarvis teaches classes in literature, writing, and fairy tale at Central Connecticut State University, The University of Connecticut, and Tunxis Community College. She lives, happily ever after, with her husband and three sons in a house filled with fairy tale books.

  • Kate Recommends...

    Check out Kate's fabulous finds that you can enjoy, too! This week's pick: The Old Farmer's Almanac Enchanted Friends living in the Eastern half of the US, in case you don’t know it yet, we are likely in for a humdinger of a winter. That’s why I’m recommending you visit The Old Farmer’s Almanac today and find out the forecast for your region. Yes, even though it’s two days before Autumn, the greatest season of the year, it’s worth looking up the winter predictions if you live anywhere from the Lower Lakes Region like me, straight down into northern Texas! Here’s a link to a map that gives an overview. If you want to get a more local forecast from the Almanac, use this tip: Google “winter forecast 2022-2023 Old Farmer’s Almanac (with the name of your state).” If you don’t, you might end up with last year’s forecast. When you get to the right page, enter your zip code and you should get a pretty good forecast—but, again, make sure it’s for this year. I use the Almanac because it is right 80 percent of the time in weather forecasting. (Canadian friends, they do a forecast for you as well.) Based on what I’ve seen so far, “bone chilling” is what Indiana is going to see. Yikes! Of course, better forecasts will emerge as we get closer to actual winter, but it’s worth looking into now to plan. Since this is a place for folklore as well as fairy tales, here’s a link to folklore on how to spot a hard winter coming. I’ve read elsewhere that heavy rose hips on your rose bushes means a hard winter and mine are covered in plentiful, huge hips! (I could not find the artist for the Jack Frost image, but it’s perfect for this post, so I used it.) Have an enchanted week!

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  • Home | FairyTaleMag

    Kate's Pick of the Week Kate Recommends... Check out Kate's fabulous finds that you can enjoy, too! This week's pick: The Old Farmer's Almanac Enchanted Friends living in the... Recent Posts 7 hours ago 2 min Throwback Thursday: The 1% Fairy Godmother Strata by Janet Bowdan Editor's Note: Today's Throwback Thursday is a classic tale as seen from a different perspective that you may not expect. Enjoy! If you... 1 day ago 3 min Phantom Reflection and We Could Be Lovers by Kim Malinowski The constructs of poetic inspiration and romantic love have been mingled for centuries, and Kim Malinowski’s works, Phantom Reflection... 2 days ago 2 min Kate Recommends... Check out Kate's fabulous finds that you can enjoy, too! This week's pick: The Old Farmer's Almanac Enchanted Friends living in the... Sep 15 4 min Throwback Thursday: Winter Dream by Carolyn Charron Editor's note: This gorgeous coming-of-age exploration of a young girl's discovery of the fae and herself made this an easy April 2014... Sep 14 2 min Book Review: The Story of the Hundred Promises by Neil Cochrane Neil Cochrane’s novel The Story of the Hundred Promises (publication date: October 4, 2022) uses the fairy tale “Beauty and the Beast” to... Sep 11 2 min Kate's Picks: A Bit of British Reading Check out Kate's fabulous finds that you can enjoy, too! This week's pick: A Bit of British Reading I’ve always liked Queen Elizabeth II... ALL POSTS "I love fairy tales because of their haunting beauty and magical strangeness. They are set in worlds where anything can happen." ​ ― Kate Forsyth We Love Fairy Tales... This is a site for fairy tale lovers, creators, and dreamers. If you love entering the imaginative world of Charles Perrault, The Brothers Grimm, and Hans Christian Andersen, this is your place. If you love reimagining classic fairy tales and putting the results into stories, this is your place. If you want to write and read all-new fairy tales, this is your place... Read More Mini Art Gallery Subscribe to Our Newsletter Get monthly updates on what's going on at The Fairy Tale Magazine, along with free art downloads, submission opportunities, and writing tips! First Name Last Name Email Subscribe

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  • About | FairyTaleMag

    About Us Since 2007, Kate Wolford has offered fairy tale lovers a space to publish their own tales, read the classics again, and enjoy classic fairy tale art through Enchanted Conversation (now known as The Fairy Tale Magazine .) This is a site for fairy tale lovers, creators, and dreamers. If you love entering the imaginative world of Charles Perrault, The Brothers Grimm, and Hans Christian Andersen, this is your place. If you love reimagining classic fairy tales and putting the results into stories, this is your place. If you want to write and read all-new fairy tales, this is your place. If you want reader-friendly analysis of fairy tales, this is your place. If you love Golden Age of Illustration art, this is your place. Enchanted Conversation was started soon after Kate began teaching the analysis of fairy tale to college students—and initially it was a site called Diamonds and Toads. Though it was supposed to be a site for students, she ran a writing contest one summer and out of that, EC was born. And here's a bit about Kate in her own words: "I’m a fairy tale lover since the late 1960s, when I first read an Oz book (there are many). I was immediately hooked, and nowadays, I try to be something of a fairy godmother to 21st century fairy tale lovers. I'm also the founder, editor and publisher of EC. When I’m not immersed in the world of fairy tales, I’m a wife, mother, grandmother, gardener and music lover. I’m also a certified meditation teacher. I hope you’ll come back often." Let the enchantment begin!

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