Thursday, January 31, 2019

The Ocean's Gift

A Dream in a Bottle
by Paula Gail Benson

I promised my parents to marry my rescuer, the lovely princess who studied at the temple by the beach.

After my ship capsized beneath the treacherous waves, hers was the face I saw as I regained consciousness.

But, I have no memory of her saving me.

Tonight before my wedding, I wake from dreams of a mute dancing girl, whose talent charmed although each step brought her searing pain.

A message drifting over sleep waves, conjured during my time in the roiling depths?

Silent one, if this is your missive, let me slumber forever so our souls may be conjoined.

©  Paula Gail Benson, all rights reserved

Friday, January 25, 2019

A Station Held by Myself or Someone Else?

Mirror Image by Paula Gail Benson

Am I to be the hero of my own life? Villain seems more appropriate. I take blame for my circumstances.

My own selfishness caused me to live in beastly form with my castle staff reduced to furniture and fixtures.

Why do enchantresses determine fates and does true love reverse spells?

A human might feel affection for an animal showing courage and protection. But, fondness and pity are insufficient to break the mirage hiding my true self.

Who’d venture here to find me? Perhaps, someone desperate enough to trade her freedom to avoid her own loss?

At heart, someone like me?

©  Paula Gail Benson, all rights reserved

Saturday, January 19, 2019

What's Your Dream?

The Shadow of a Dream by Paula Gail Benson

“The very substance of the ambitious is merely the shadow of a dream.” -- from Hamlet by William Shakespeare

While hunting through the forest, I heard about a hidden kingdom, now lost in overgrown vines and dosing subjects. All winnable by a single kiss.

Being an enterprising sort, I hacked my way through the overgrowth and entered the castle, passing by those slumped in perpetual slumber. Reaching the tower room, I found the princess lying in regal splendor, her hand pricked by a spinning wheel’s spindle resting beside her cheek.

All asleep one hundred years. All waiting to resume. What?

Princess, do you know your nap’s length? What do you expect when you wake? Might you dream of me?

©  Paula Gail Benson, all rights reserved

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Planting the Path

The Root of Evil by Paula Gail Benson

            The produce from a witch’s garden is enchanted. A pregnant woman craving a rampion (greens, but perhaps the root vegetable) led to her newborn daughter being imprisoned in the witch’s inaccessible tower.
            Only the daughter’s song, led to a prince’s discovery.
            The couple created a prison home until the witch discovered them and, in anger, exiled her transformed charge and maimed the transgressor, shoving him from the tower so he was blinded by the thorn bed she cultivated below.
            Guided by sound, he wandered. Then, once again, he heard his beloved’s song, this time as a lullaby for their twins.

© Paula Gail Benson, all rights reserved

Monday, January 7, 2019

From Glass Slippers to . . . Forest Confusion

The Huntsman’s Dilemma by Paula Gail Benson

It’s odd finding your heart’s desire in a glass coffin in the woods--her skin so white, she looks like a vampire. I wonder, did my true love kiss revive her, or was the poisoned apple dislodged from her throat when the pall bearers jostled her body on the way to her burial?

What makes me feel like Romeo in Juliet’s tomb? How did I get a happily ever after when Shakespeare’s ill-fated sweethearts faced tragedy?

And, what’s with this version where the wicked queen attends our wedding and is forced to dance to her untimely demise in red-hot shoes?

© Paula Gail Benson, all rights reserved

See: “. . . the queen arrives at the wedding to investigate and is shocked to find that the bride is Snow White. She is frozen with rage and fear, but when the Queen was about to start a pandemonium, the prince, who recognizes her as a threat to his kingdom, orders for her to wear a pair of red-hot iron slippers and dance in them until she drops dead for the attempted murder of Snow White, so that the wedding will peacefully continue.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

A New Year Brings New Ventures!

With 2019, I begin a series of Drabble (100 word stories) focusing on unexplored aspects of well-known stories. I call these “Ferreted Out Fairy Tales” and the first group “Princely Pursuits,” because they examine the tales from the viewpoints of the rescuers, who largely remain off-stage until making entrances to be heroic.

The first features Cinderella’s Prince on his journey to find his elusive dance partner.

Footfall by Paula Gail Benson

The horses’ hooves stirred up dust from the road they traveled, surrounding them with a sandy mist.

“Must we find this particular maiden?” Felix asked the Prince.

Several hundred female feet had strained to fit the glass slipper. The Prince even indulged children to place their toes where the sole of a future Princess had rested. After covering most of the kingdom without locating a match, Felix, the weary footman, longed for home.

Yet, the Prince persisted. His soul mate had the other see-through sandal, while the one he carried served as a crystal ball predicting an unparalleled future together.

©  Paula Gail Benson, all rights reserved