Oliver Sacks on Awakening

Oliver Sacks on Awakening

No story has gripped me more than the real-life “sleeping beauty” story that Oliver Sacks tells in his magnificent book, Awakenings. For years I have been fascinated by the symmetry between his experience of patients with encephalitis lethargica and the...
The Dark Princess

The Dark Princess

Over the years, I have been fascinated by Richard Kennedy’s modern fairy tale, The Dark Princess. It’s a story about a princess whose light is so bright that she blinds anyone who looks at her directly. She is utterly alone in the world until she meets a...
The Finished Woman

The Finished Woman

You dreamt of failing in a finishing school. You were never going to succeed at becoming a Lady. You submitted yourself to endless lessons in etiquette. You allowed every natural instinct to be critiqued, and eventually all the humiliations and tiny tortures silenced...
In Praise of Nymphs

In Praise of Nymphs

I had a dream the other night that I had written something important using a fountain pen. I was staying in a hotel and I came out of the room carrying my writings in a sheaf of loose papers. I got on the elevator with a couple who were wearing white robes. Each of...
Real Nightingales

Real Nightingales

Lately I’ve been using WonderLit to explore the Anderson story, The Emperor and the Nightingale. You might remember that the story is about a nightingale who is captured and taken to the palace of the Emperor of China. She has a voice of unparalleled beauty and when...

Pin It on Pinterest