Hello, my name is Sophia and I am a teacher of English in Ancient Olympia, Greece. Welcome to my blog!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

As I breathe you in

"They do it with mirrors. It's a cliche of course, but it's also true. Magicians have been using mirrors, usually set at a forty-five-degree angle, ever since the Victorians began to manufacture reliable, clear mirrors in quantity, well over a hundred years ago. John Nevil Maskelyne began it, in 1862, with a wardrobe that, thanks to a cunningly placed mirror, concealed more than it revealed.

Mirrors are wonderful things. They appear to tell the truth, to reflect life back out at us; but set a mirror correctly and it will lie so convincingly you'll believe that something has vanished into thin air, that a box filled with doves and flags and spiders is actually empty, that people hidden in the wings or the pit are floating ghosts upon the stage. Angle it right and a mirror becomes a magic casement; it can show you anything you can imagine and maybe a few things you can't.

(The smoke blurs the edges of things.)

Stories are, in one way or another, mirrors. We use them to explain to ourselves how the world works or how it doesn't work. Like mirrors, stories prepare us for the day to come. They distract us from the things in the darkness.

Fantasy — and all fiction is fantasy of one kind or another — is a mirror. A distorting mirror, to be sure, and a concealing mirror, set at forty-five degrees to reality, but it's a mirror nonetheless, which we can use to tell ourselves things we might not otherwise see. (Fairy tales, as G. K. Chesterton once said, are more than true. Not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be defeated.)

Winter started today. The sky turned grey and the snow began to fall and it did not stop falling until well after dark. I sat in the darkness and watched the snow falling, and the flakes glistened and glimmered as they spun into the light and out again, and I wondered about where stories came from."


Blogger Darthiir the Abban said...

Απ' τον ουρανό... :)))

10:41 am

Blogger Sophia said...

@Darthiir the Abban
"Storm-darken'd or starry bright"
(Και όχι μόνο...)

11:23 am

Blogger Кроткая said...

thanks, thanks, thanks!
ένα από τα λίγα όμορφα πράγματα που είδα σήμερα.

11:49 am

Blogger Sophia said...

XAXAXA, ωχ, άμα ΑΥΤΟ είναι ένα από τα καλύτερα, διστάζω να ρωτήσω για τα υπόλοιπα (αν και πράγματι, ο Neil, είναι πολύ καλός.. ;-ΡΡΡ). Πάντως, παρά τρίχα γλυτώσατε και την συζήτηση που ακολούθησε και τις αναφορές στον Borges και τους καθρέφτες και όλα τα συναμαρτούμενα!!!

11:55 am


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