Saturday, April 4, 2009
Unicorns, the ubiquitous territory of little girls, and girlish women, myself included. What then the fascination? Is it a stale trope, or an enduring symbol? I always loved horses (until I worked at a thoroughbred farm for four years, but that's another story) and dreamed about them. I went to bed drumming my fingers across the pillow to fall asleep to the rhythm of galloping hooves. I have white unicorn figurines (made in China) adorning my basement bathroom, remnants of childhood unbroken. But is that all it is, a pretty horse mixed with empty wishes? Does trite fantasy compel me or is there something more.
In medieval times, the unicorn symbolized innocence, but it was also a creature of unfettered spirit, wild and impossible to tame except in the lap of a genuine virgin. Indeed, virgins were used to lull them into stupor, wherein hunters could take advantage to capture and kill the magical beast. From a 21st century point of view, this act is impossible to comprehend. How could anyone wish to capture and kill a thing of such wonder and beauty? And yet, in the wake of civilization, we have left a litany of very real extinctions of beasts every bit as wondrous as the mythical unicorn. The unicorn, for me, is a symbol of all that is lost in our world. Lost creatures and lost mysteries as the rigors of science and logic leave little room for belief in the fantastic. This is my tribute to a world that is gone, where passenger pigeons darkened the sky and it was easy to believe in dragons.
Some amazing, but extinct beasts here.
Image: linocut using softoleum, ACEO 2.5" x 3.5" on bristol, watercoloured background, hand-pulled print, available at etsy.
PS. Fellow bloggers, need your help here. I finished (well, I'll still be tweeking) a static 'sales' page which I won't bother you with, but now have moved on to a more, erm, casual page for people who just want to say hi (well, I hope you want to say hi). I called it Casual Connections, but that doesn't sound right? Anything else? It's just a page for where to find me on the web for chitter and chatter, and other silly things. Since I had to eliminate comments for technical reasons (this allows the page to appear without the post date) just plop them here, or twitter, or whatever. Suggestions welcome. Everything is still a work in progress.
And if anyone else wants to know how to build static pages in blogger, here are the instructions I used--it worked!