Monday, November 30, 2009

I Still Believe

When I was nine years old, I wanted to be a mermaid. I used to draw pictures of them and my sister and I decided when we died we would ask God if He could make us mermaids instead of angels...

Yeah, I was nine..

My freshmen year of college, I wrote a paper on the Loch Ness Monster for my English class. While I still insist I presented a valid argument for its existence, I didn't quite manage to make a believer out of my professor.

I still think I should have received an A for creativity, not that B...


Mermaids. Big Foot. The Jersey Devil. The Loch Ness Monster. They have all fascinated me. They're beautiful, mysterious, wondrous, even dangerous. And as varied as they are in their locations, appearances and histories, they all have one thing in common.

They take me away.

Staring at pictures of the Loch Ness Monster, I'm transported to a land of mystery and lore. I visit a time when fairies danced beneath hills and spirits whispered in the Highland mists. As I read about the Jersey Devil I'm carried to a dark, unpaved road, the bare denuded trees like skeletons as their bony branches stretch upward. Out of the eerie quiet echoes a heavy flap of wings and a gargoyle-like creature casts its shadow across the gleam of the full moon.
In those worlds I am a part of the magic. I can pet the sloped head of the Loch Ness Monster. Dive beneath the waves into the depths of the sea as a mermaid. Become another person. Escape.

Isn't that why we read?

Whether it's to walk in the shadow of Big Foot or delve into the world of vampires...Whether it's to crash land in the fairy kingdom of Oberon or fall in love and hungry passion with the man harboring a dark secret...We read to discover different worlds, and for a couple of hours, become part of those worlds. We're heroines, lovers, warriors, immortal...we're readers.

Magic, mythical creatures and legends do exist in this world of science, technology and explanations. And they're found between the pages of a book.

5 comments:

Christine said...

Hey, I wrote stories about the Man from Atlantis and practiced breathing underwater in my bathtub. I also practiced the "mermaid swim." O M G am I a geek or what? No. I just soooo wanted to be carried away and live in a fantasy world.... LOVE THIS POST.

Naima Simone said...

Hi, Christine!
I still watch documentaries on Atlantis! LOL! And I can't pass up anything on the Loch Ness Monster so I guess that makes us both geeks!! hee-hee-hee! Sexy, fashion forward geeks, though...ooh! Don't forget modest, too!!

Christine said...

Oh yes... extremely modest! hahaha--and sexy.... geekazoids on hormones are a force to be reckoned with.... haha... I love the idea of the alternate universe here on planet earth--no space travel that way.

M.V.Freeman said...

Oh, how I understand this post!

That is why I read, to feed that part of me that wanted the good parts of fantasy to be real.

That includes meeting a mermaid!
(Although, my secret was, I wanted to fly through the air....in retrospect I don't like heights...so there you go.)

Wonderful post Naima!

Jeanie said...

Wait, are you saying Nessie isn't real? No way. I so believe in him . . . and fairies and other magical creatures. Hey, we can't see atoms and bacteria and David Hasselhoff's brain, and THEY'RE real. Who's to say there's not another dimension right next to us and we simply can't see it?

Excuse me while I go put on my aluminum hat so the aliens can't read my thoughts.