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Friday, April 12, 2024

Tolstoy - How I Learned to Ride - Keeping the Public in Public Domain

1949 Newbery Medal winner, also 1990 movie

April 13, 1902 is the birthday of Marguerite Henry whose 59 award-winning books about animals are primarily about horses.  I confess, while I rode as a camp counselor, I'm not really a horse person.  That doesn't keep me from appreciating horses and horsemanship.  As a librarian, Henry's books show every sign of remaining classics among young horse-lovers.

Her books rightfully remain in copyright for her estate. Since they are unavailable here, I went looking for another horse-loving author.  Leo Tolstoy's work comes close.  I was tempted to post his "The Old Horse" and recommend it...maybe another time.  In volume 12 of The Complete Works of Count Tolstoy that story precedes today's Tolstoy story of "How I Learned to Ride."  Storytellers could easily tell both as a story of the start of beginning a life of horsemanship and how it can affect the rider's life..

HOW I LEARNED TO RIDE

When I was a little fellow, we used to study every day, and only on Sundays and holidays went out and played with our brothers. Once my father said:

"The children must learn to ride. Send them to the riding-school!"

I was the youngest of the brothers, and I asked:

"May I, too, learn to ride?"

My father said:

"You will fall down."

I began to beg him to let me learn, and almost cried. My father said:

"All right, you may go, too. Only look out! Don't cry when you fall off. He who does not once fall down from a horse will not learn to ride."

When Wednesday came, all three of us were taken to the riding-school. We entered by a large porch, and from the large porch went to a smaller one. Beyond the porch was a very large room: instead of a floor it had sand. And in this room were gentlemen and ladies and just such boys as we. That was the riding-school. The riding-school was not very light, and there was a smell of horses, and you could hear them snap whips and call to the horses, and the horses strike their hoofs against the wooden walls. At first I was frightened and could not see things well. Then our valet called the riding-master, and said:

"Give these boys some horses: they are going to learn how to ride."

The master said:

"All right!"

Then he looked at me, and said:

"He is very small, yet."

But the valet said:

"He promised not to cry when he falls down."

The master laughed and went away.

Then they brought three saddled horses, and we took off our cloaks and walked down a staircase to the riding-school. The master was holding a horse by a cord, and my brothers rode around him. At first they rode at a slow pace, and later at a trot. Then they brought a pony. It was a red horse, and his tail was cut off. He was called Ruddy. The master laughed, and said to me:

"Well, young gentleman, get on your horse!"

I was both happy and afraid, and tried to act in such a manner as not to be noticed by anybody. For a long time I tried to get my foot into the stirrup, but could not do it because I was too small. Then the master raised me up in his hands and put me on the saddle. He said:

"The young master is not heavy,—about two pounds in weight, that is all."

At first he held me by my hand, but I saw that my brothers were not held, and so I begged him to let go of me. He said:

"Are you not afraid?"

I was very much afraid, but I said that I was not. I was so much afraid because Ruddy kept dropping his ears. I thought he was angry at me. The master said:

"Look out, don't fall down!" and let go of me. At first Ruddy went at a slow pace, and I sat up straight. But the saddle was sleek, and I was afraid I would slip off. The master asked me:

"Well, are you fast in the saddle?"

I said:

"Yes, I am."

"If so, go at a slow trot!" and the master clicked his tongue.

Ruddy started at a slow trot, and began to jog me. But I kept silent, and tried not to slip to one side. The master praised me:

"Oh, a fine young gentleman, indeed!"

I was very glad to hear it.

Just then the master's friend went up to him and began to talk with him, and the master stopped looking at me.

Suddenly I felt that I had slipped a little to one side on my saddle. I wanted to straighten myself up, but was unable to do so. I wanted to call out to the master to stop the horse, but I thought it would be a disgrace if I did it, and so kept silence. The master was not looking at me and Ruddy ran at a trot, and I slipped still more to one side. I looked at the master and thought that he would help me, but he was still talking with his friend, and without looking at me kept repeating:

"Well done, young gentleman!"

I was now altogether to one side, and was very much frightened. I thought that I was lost; but I felt ashamed to cry. Ruddy shook me up once more, and I slipped off entirely and fell to the ground. Then Ruddy stopped, and the master looked at the horse and saw that I was not on him. He said:

"I declare, my young gentleman has dropped off!" and walked over to me.

When I told him that I was not hurt, he laughed and said:

"A child's body is soft."

I felt like crying. I asked him to put me again on the horse, and I was lifted on the horse. After that I did not fall down again.

Thus we rode twice a week in the riding-school, and I soon learned to ride well, and was not afraid of anything.


That 1904 version was translated from the original Russian and edited by Leo Wiener, Assistant Professor of Slavic Languages at Harvard University.

If in a live telling, I would pair the Tolstoy tales with a tale from India I've been unable to find in Public Domain.  I recall several different titles given to it, The Hallowed Horse - the picture book by Demi, "The Wonderful Horse" or "A Horse Called Terror."  Sudhin Ghose was my first author of the tale.  My copy of it  (titled "The Wonderful Horse") is in Folk Tales and Fairy Stories from India .  Because Ghose died in 1965, publishing in Britain, his works entering Public Domain are based on that date and are unavailable until 1935. Do I tell stories in copyright?  Yes, as my retelling is part of its oral tradition.  To show you the power of the story, I was once in a hospital lying on a gurney, talking of course.  The technician recognized my voice and proceeded to retell it in all its many complicated twists and turns.  He had overheard me telling the story at a Festival of the Horse.  The funny thing for me is that I could have sworn my audience was no bigger than a few relatives who also came.  If you are fortunate enough to find it I'm sure you will enjoy and remember it, too.

*****************************

This is part of a series of postings of stories under the category, "Keeping the Public in Public Domain."  The idea behind Public Domain was to preserve our cultural heritage after the authors and their immediate heirs were compensated.  I feel strongly current copyright law delays this intent on works of the 20th century.  My own library of folklore includes so many books within the Public Domain I decided to share stories from them.  I hope you enjoy discovering new stories.  


At the same time, my own involvement in storytelling regularly creates projects requiring research as part of my sharing stories with an audience.  Whenever that research needs to be shown here, the publishing of Public Domain stories will not occur that week.  This is a return to my regular posting of a research project here.  (Don't worry, this isn't dry research, my research is always geared towards future storytelling to an audience.)  Response has convinced me that "Keeping the Public in Public Domain" should continue along with my other postings as often as I can manage it.

Other Public Domain story resources I recommend-

  • There are many online resources for Public Domain stories, maybe none for folklore is as ambitious as fellow storyteller, Yoel Perez's database, Yashpeh, the International Folktales Collection.  I have long recommended it and continue to do so.  He has loaded Stith Thompson's Motif Index into his server as a database so you can search the whole 6 volumes for whatever word or expression you like by pressing one key. http://folkmasa.org/motiv/motif.htm

  • You may have noticed I'm no longer certain Dr. Perez has the largest database, although his offering the Motif Index certainly qualifies for those of us seeking specific types of stories.  There's another site, FairyTalez claiming to be the largest, with "over 2000 fairy tales, folktales, and fables" and they are "fully optimized for phones, tablets, and PCs", free and presented without ads.
    Between those two sites, there is much for story-lovers, but as they say in infomercials, "Wait, there's more!"

The email list for storytellers, Storytell, discussed Online Story Sources and came up with these additional suggestions:        

         - David K. Brown - http://people.ucalgary.ca/~dkbrown/stories.html

         - Richard Martin - http://www.tellatale.eu/tales_page.html

         - Spirit of Trees - http://spiritoftrees.org/featured-folktales

         - Story-Lovers - http://www.story-lovers.com/ is now only accessible through the Wayback Machine, described below, but the late Jackie Baldwin's wonderful site lives on there, fully searchable manually (the Google search doesn't work), at https://archive.org/ .  It's not easy, but go to Story-lovers.com snapshot for December 22 2016  and you can click on SOS: Searching Out Stories to scroll down through the many story topics and click on the story topic that interests you.

       - World of Tales - http://www.worldoftales.com/ 

 
           - Zalka Csenge Virag - http://multicoloreddiary.blogspot.com doesn't give the actual stories, but her recommendations, working her way through each country on a continent, give excellent ideas for finding new books and stories to love and tell.

     
You're going to find many of the links on these sites have gone down, BUT go to the Internet Archive Wayback Machine to find some of these old links.  Tim's site, for example, is so huge probably updating it would be a full-time job.  In the case of Story-Lovers, it's great that Jackie Baldwin set it up to stay online as long as it did after she could no longer maintain it.  Possibly searches maintained it.  Unfortunately Storytell list member, Papa Joe is on both Tim Sheppard's site and Story-Lovers, but he no longer maintains his old Papa Joe's Traveling Storytelling Show website and his Library (something you want to see!) is now only on the Wayback Machine.  It took some patience working back through claims of snapshots but finally in December of 2006 it appears!

    Somebody as of this writing whose stories can still be found by his website is the late Chuck Larkin - http://chucklarkin.com/stories.html.  I prefer to list these sites by their complete address so they can be found by the Wayback Machine, a.k.a. Archive.org, when that becomes the only way to find them.

You can see why I recommend these to you. 

Have fun discovering even more stories

Friday, April 5, 2024

Holbrook - The Story of the Earth and Sky - Keeping the Public in Public Domain

Right now "Everybody" is talking about the coming eclipse.  The National Park Service reminds us there are many Types of Eclipses and stories to go with them.  Since the one about to happen is a very rare total eclipse it's becoming more and more chaotic in places where it will truly be a total chance to view.  There's probably not a lot of related storytelling other than personal experiences (like the impossible traffic jams and, hopefully, not about vision problems it may cause).  That doesn't mean stories about the sun, moon, and eclipses won't sometimes be worth knowing.

I found an interesting story that seems to fit those times when a tale about never being satisfied is worthwhile.  It also fits a variety of astronomical themes.  It's from Florence Holbrook's wonderful 1902, The Book of Nature Myths.  I'm delighted that Project Gutenberg reproduced it, saving my own reprinted copy and making it available to all.

Photo by Jongsun Lee on Unsplash

THE STORY OF THE EARTH AND THE SKY.

The sky used to be very close to the earth, and of course the earth had no sunshine. Trees did not grow, flowers did not blossom, and water was not clear and bright. The earth did not know that there was any other way of living, and so she did not complain.

By and by the sky and the earth had a son who was called the Shining One. When he was small, he had a dream, and he told it to the earth. "Mother Earth," he said, "I had a dream, and it was that the sky was far up above us. There was a bright light, and it made you more radiant than I ever saw you. What could the light have been?"

"I do not know, my Shining One," she answered, "for there is nothing but the earth and the sky."

After a long, long time, the Shining One was fully grown. Then he said to the sky, "Father Sky, will you not go higher up, that there may be light and warmth on the earth?"

"There is no 'higher up,'" declared the sky. "There is only just here."

Then the Shining One raised the sky till he rested on the mountain peaks.

"Oh! oh!" cried the sky. "They hurt. The peaks are sharp and rough. You are an unkind, cruel son."

"In my dreams you were still higher up," replied the Shining One, and he raised the sky still higher.

"Oh! oh!" complained the sky, "I can hardly see the peaks. I will stay on the rough rocks."

"You were far above the rocks in my dream," replied the Shining One.

Then when the sky was raised far above the earth and no longer touched even the peaks, a great change came over the earth. She, too, had thought the Shining One unkind, and she had said, "Shining One, it was only a dream. Why should you change the sky and the earth? Why not let them stay as they were before you had the dream?"

"O Mother Earth," he said, "I wish you could see the radiant change that has come to pass. The air is full of light and warmth and fragrance. You yourself are more beautiful than you were even in my dream. Listen and hear the song of the birds. See the flowers blossoming in every field, and even covering the rough peaks of the mountains. Should you be glad if I had let all things stay as they were? Was I unkind to make you so much more lovely than you were?"

Before the earth could answer, the sky began to complain. "You have spread over earth a new cloak of green, and of course she is beautiful with all her flowers and birds, but here am I, raised far above the mountain peaks. I have no cloak, nor have I flowers and birds. Shining One, give me a cloak."

"That will I do, and most gladly," replied the Shining One, and he spread a soft cloak of dark blue over the sky, and in it many a star sparkled and twinkled.

"That is very well in the night," said the heavens, "but it is not good in the daytime, it is too gloomy. Give me another cloak for the day." Then the Shining One spread a light blue cloak over the sky for the daytime, and at last the sky was as beautiful as the earth.

Now both sky and earth were contented. "I did not know that the earth was so radiant," said the sky. "I did not know that the sky was so beautiful," said the earth. "I will send a message to tell her how lovely she is," thought the sky, and he dropped down a gentle little rain.

"I, too, will send a message," thought the earth, "and the clouds shall carry it for me." That is why there is often a light cloud rising from the earth in the morning. It is carrying a good-morning message from the beautiful earth to the sky.


For the idea of eclipses you could add a personal conclusion about Eclipses and say that "since earth, sky and the heavens had such a hard time agreeing, we sometimes get a bit of their quarreling in Eclipses.

Holbrook was a principal and I can believe she would approve.

******************************

This is part of a series of postings of stories under the category, "Keeping the Public in Public Domain."  The idea behind Public Domain was to preserve our cultural heritage after the authors and their immediate heirs were compensated.  I feel strongly current copyright law delays this intent on works of the 20th century.  My own library of folklore includes so many books within the Public Domain I decided to share stories from them.  I hope you enjoy discovering new stories.  


At the same time, my own involvement in storytelling regularly creates projects requiring research as part of my sharing stories with an audience.  Whenever that research needs to be shown here, the publishing of Public Domain stories will not occur that week.  This is a return to my regular posting of a research project here.  (Don't worry, this isn't dry research, my research is always geared towards future storytelling to an audience.)  Response has convinced me that "Keeping the Public in Public Domain" should continue along with my other postings as often as I can manage it.

Other Public Domain story resources I recommend-

  • There are many online resources for Public Domain stories, maybe none for folklore is as ambitious as fellow storyteller, Yoel Perez's database, Yashpeh, the International Folktales Collection.  I have long recommended it and continue to do so.  He has loaded Stith Thompson's Motif Index into his server as a database so you can search the whole 6 volumes for whatever word or expression you like by pressing one key. http://folkmasa.org/motiv/motif.htm

  • You may have noticed I'm no longer certain Dr. Perez has the largest database, although his offering the Motif Index certainly qualifies for those of us seeking specific types of stories.  There's another site, FairyTalez claiming to be the largest, with "over 2000 fairy tales, folktales, and fables" and they are "fully optimized for phones, tablets, and PCs", free and presented without ads.
    Between those two sites, there is much for story-lovers, but as they say in infomercials, "Wait, there's more!"

The email list for storytellers, Storytell, discussed Online Story Sources and came up with these additional suggestions:        

         - David K. Brown - http://people.ucalgary.ca/~dkbrown/stories.html

         - Richard Martin - http://www.tellatale.eu/tales_page.html

         - Spirit of Trees - http://spiritoftrees.org/featured-folktales

         - Story-Lovers - http://www.story-lovers.com/ is now only accessible through the Wayback Machine, described below, but the late Jackie Baldwin's wonderful site lives on there, fully searchable manually (the Google search doesn't work), at https://archive.org/ .  It's not easy, but go to Story-lovers.com snapshot for December 22 2016  and you can click on SOS: Searching Out Stories to scroll down through the many story topics and click on the story topic that interests you.

       - World of Tales - http://www.worldoftales.com/ 

 
           - Zalka Csenge Virag - http://multicoloreddiary.blogspot.com doesn't give the actual stories, but her recommendations, working her way through each country on a continent, give excellent ideas for finding new books and stories to love and tell.

     
You're going to find many of the links on these sites have gone down, BUT go to the Internet Archive Wayback Machine to find some of these old links.  Tim's site, for example, is so huge probably updating it would be a full-time job.  In the case of Story-Lovers, it's great that Jackie Baldwin set it up to stay online as long as it did after she could no longer maintain it.  Possibly searches maintained it.  Unfortunately Storytell list member, Papa Joe is on both Tim Sheppard's site and Story-Lovers, but he no longer maintains his old Papa Joe's Traveling Storytelling Show website and his Library (something you want to see!) is now only on the Wayback Machine.  It took some patience working back through claims of snapshots but finally in December of 2006 it appears!

    Somebody as of this writing whose stories can still be found by his website is the late Chuck Larkin - http://chucklarkin.com/stories.html.  I prefer to list these sites by their complete address so they can be found by the Wayback Machine, a.k.a. Archive.org, when that becomes the only way to find them.

You can see why I recommend these to you. 

Have fun discovering even more stories

Friday, March 29, 2024

Olcott - The Beauty of the Lily - Keeping the Public in Public Domain

Last week I promised another tale from Frances Jenkins Olcott, in this case from her book, The Wonder Garden; Nature Myths and Tales from All the World Over...  That subtitle is condensed, but it goes on to say it's "For Storytelling and Reading Aloud and for the Children's Own Reading."  Last week I once again gave a bit of Olcott's background.  Her desire to keep children reading and intent for storytelling was very much a part of her success.  I went to https://www.amortization.org and learned the half million dollars earned in her lifetime today would be over five million dollars!  Clearly her work was well-loved.  It took a bit of prowling, but discovered she wrote today's story for The Churchman.  It's a very unusual Easter tale.  Personally I love the way it incorporates the Easter greeting of "Christ is risen!" and it's response of "He is risen indeed!"

THE BEAUTY OF THE LILY

 

By Matt on Unsplash

Easter Tale

ONCE upon a time, in a far-distant land, there dwelt a peasant named Ivan, and with him lived his little nephew Vasily.

Ivan was gloomy and unkempt, and his restless eyes looked out from his matted hair and beard. As for the little Vasily, he was a manly child; but though his uncle was kind enough to him in his way, he neither washed him, nor combed his hair, nor taught him anything.

The hut they lived in was very miserable. Its walls were full of holes, the furniture of its one room was broken down and dusty, and its floor unswept. The little garden was filled with stones and weeds. The neighbours passing by in the daytime turned aside their heads. But they never passed at night, for fear of Ivan.

Now it happened one Easter morning that Ivan, feeling restless, rose early and went and stood before the door of the hut. The trees were budding, the air was full of bird-songs, the dew lay glittering on the grass, and a near-by brook ran leaping and gurgling along. The rays of the rising Sun shone slanting from the tops of the distant hills, and seemed to touch the hut.

And as Ivan looked, he saw a young man coming swiftly and lightly from the hills, and he bore on his arm a sheaf of pure white Lilies. The stranger drew near, and stopped before the hut.

"Christ is risen!" he said in flute-like tones.

"He is risen indeed!" muttered Ivan through his beard.

Then the young man took a Lily from his sheaf and gave it to Ivan, saying: —

"Keep it white !”: And, smiling, he passed on.

Wonderingly Ivan gazed at the flower in his hand. Its gold-green stem seemed to support a pure white crown, — or was it a translucent cup filled with light! And as the man looked into the flower's gold-fringed heart, awe stole into his soul.

Then he turned and entered the hut, saying to himself, "I will put it in water."

But when he went to lay the Lily on the window-sill, so that he might search for a vessel to set it in, he dared not put it down, for the sill was covered with thick dust.

He turned to the table, but its top was soiled with crumbs of mouldy bread and cheese mingled with dirt. He looked about the room, and not one spot could he see where he might lay the Lily without sullying its pure loveliness.

He called the little Vasily, and bade him stand and hold the flower. He then searched for something to put it in. He found an empty bottle, which he carried to the brook and washed and filled with sparkling water. This he placed upon the table, and in it set the Lily.

Then as he looked at the begrimed hands of little Vasily he thought to himself, "When I leave the room he may touch the flower and soil it." So he took the child and washed him, and combed his yellow hair; and the little one seemed to bloom like the Lily itself. And Ivan gazed on him in amazement, murmuring, “I never saw it thus before!'

From that hour a change came over Ivan. He cared tenderly for the little Vasily. He washed himself and combed his own hair. He cleaned the hut and mended its walls and furniture. He carried away the weeds and stones from the garden. He sowed flowers and planted vegetables. And the neighbours passing by no longer turned their heads aside, but stopping talked with Ivan, and sometimes gave the little Vasily presents of clothes and toys.

As for the Lily, seven days it blossomed in freshness and beauty, and gave forth a delicate fragrance; but on the eighth day, when Ivan and Vasily woke, it was gone. And though they sought it in hut and garden, they did not find it.

So Ivan and the little Vasily worked from day to day among their flowers and vegetables, and talked to their neighbours, and were happy. When the long winter nights came, Ivan read aloud about the Lilies of the Field, that toil not, neither do they spin, yet Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like them. He read of that Beloved that feedeth among the Lilies, and of the Rose of Sharon and the Lily -of -the- Valley.

. . . . . .

So Easter came again. And early, very early in the morning, Ivan and the little Vasily arose and dressed, and went and stood before the hut. And when the splendour of the coming day shone above the distant hills, lo! the young man came swiftly and lightly, and in his arms he bore crimson Roses.

He drew near, and, stopping before the hut, said sweetly: —

"Christ is risen!"

"He is risen, indeed !': responded Ivan and Vasily joyously.

"How beautiful is thy Lily!'1' said the young man.

"Alas!'' answered Ivan, "it is vanished away, and we know not whither."

"Its beauty lives in thy heart," said the young man. "It can never die!"

And he took from his arm a crimson Rose and gave it to Vasily, saying : —

"Keep it fresh!"

But he smiled tenderly at Ivan, and passed on.

*****************************

This is part of a series of postings of stories under the category, "Keeping the Public in Public Domain."  The idea behind Public Domain was to preserve our cultural heritage after the authors and their immediate heirs were compensated.  I feel strongly current copyright law delays this intent on works of the 20th century.  My own library of folklore includes so many books within the Public Domain I decided to share stories from them.  I hope you enjoy discovering new stories.  


At the same time, my own involvement in storytelling regularly creates projects requiring research as part of my sharing stories with an audience.  Whenever that research needs to be shown here, the publishing of Public Domain stories will not occur that week.  This is a return to my regular posting of a research project here.  (Don't worry, this isn't dry research, my research is always geared towards future storytelling to an audience.)  Response has convinced me that "Keeping the Public in Public Domain" should continue along with my other postings as often as I can manage it.

Other Public Domain story resources I recommend-

  • There are many online resources for Public Domain stories, maybe none for folklore is as ambitious as fellow storyteller, Yoel Perez's database, Yashpeh, the International Folktales Collection.  I have long recommended it and continue to do so.  He has loaded Stith Thompson's Motif Index into his server as a database so you can search the whole 6 volumes for whatever word or expression you like by pressing one key. http://folkmasa.org/motiv/motif.htm

  • You may have noticed I'm no longer certain Dr. Perez has the largest database, although his offering the Motif Index certainly qualifies for those of us seeking specific types of stories.  There's another site, FairyTalez claiming to be the largest, with "over 2000 fairy tales, folktales, and fables" and they are "fully optimized for phones, tablets, and PCs", free and presented without ads.
    Between those two sites, there is much for story-lovers, but as they say in infomercials, "Wait, there's more!"

The email list for storytellers, Storytell, discussed Online Story Sources and came up with these additional suggestions:        

         - David K. Brown - http://people.ucalgary.ca/~dkbrown/stories.html

         - Richard Martin - http://www.tellatale.eu/tales_page.html

         - Spirit of Trees - http://spiritoftrees.org/featured-folktales

         - Story-Lovers - http://www.story-lovers.com/ is now only accessible through the Wayback Machine, described below, but the late Jackie Baldwin's wonderful site lives on there, fully searchable manually (the Google search doesn't work), at https://archive.org/ .  It's not easy, but go to Story-lovers.com snapshot for December 22 2016  and you can click on SOS: Searching Out Stories to scroll down through the many story topics and click on the story topic that interests you.

       - World of Tales - http://www.worldoftales.com/ 

 
           - Zalka Csenge Virag - http://multicoloreddiary.blogspot.com doesn't give the actual stories, but her recommendations, working her way through each country on a continent, give excellent ideas for finding new books and stories to love and tell.

     
You're going to find many of the links on these sites have gone down, BUT go to the Internet Archive Wayback Machine to find some of these old links.  Tim's site, for example, is so huge probably updating it would be a full-time job.  In the case of Story-Lovers, it's great that Jackie Baldwin set it up to stay online as long as it did after she could no longer maintain it.  Possibly searches maintained it.  Unfortunately Storytell list member, Papa Joe is on both Tim Sheppard's site and Story-Lovers, but he no longer maintains his old Papa Joe's Traveling Storytelling Show website and his Library (something you want to see!) is now only on the Wayback Machine.  It took some patience working back through claims of snapshots but finally in December of 2006 it appears!

    Somebody as of this writing whose stories can still be found by his website is the late Chuck Larkin - http://chucklarkin.com/stories.html.  I prefer to list these sites by their complete address so they can be found by the Wayback Machine, a.k.a. Archive.org, when that becomes the only way to find them.

You can see why I recommend these to you. 

Have fun discovering even more stories

 

Friday, March 22, 2024

Andersen - The Loveliest Rose in the World - Keeping the Public in Public Domain

This week opens with Palm Sunday.

by Brady Leavell on Unsplash

Our church every year puts all of us into that crowd waving palms and shouting "Hosannah!  Hosanna in the highest!" before we turn to shouting those horrible words "Crucify him!"  Surely as you do it you can't help feeling your own part in what led to all of this.  

I found Brady Leavell's photo perfect for the event, but am not surprised there doesn't seem to be a story of Palm Sunday beyond the gospels.

Last week's stories for St. Patrick's Day came from Francis Jenkins Olcott's The Wonder Garden; Nature Myths and Tales...  Olcott was the first librarian to head and develop a program for Children's Librarians at the 20th century innovative Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.  When she left there in 1911, she went on to write and edit 24 books that earned more than half a million dollars during her lifetime!  Is it any wonder  her anthologies are edited to make them tellable?  Today's story, while in a trio of Easter stories is the closest fit for this week, known as Holy Week.  It comes from Good Stories from Great Holidays

Next week on Easter Sunday we'll return to The Wonder Garden.

THE LOVELIEST ROSE IN THE WORLD

BY HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSEN (ADAPTED)

Once there reigned a queen, in whose garden were found the most glorious flowers at all seasons and from all the lands of the world. But more than all others she loved the roses, and she had many kinds of this flower, from the wild dog-rose with its apple-scented green leaves to the most splendid, large, crimson roses. They grew against the garden walls, wound themselves around the pillars and wind-frames, and crept through the windows into the rooms, and all along the ceilings in the halls. And the roses were of many colors, and of every fragrance and form.

But care and sorrow dwelt in those halls. The queen lay upon a sick-bed, and the doctors said she must die.

“There is still one thing that can save her,” said the wise man. “Bring her the loveliest rose in the world, the rose that is the symbol of the purest, the brightest love. If that is held before her eyes ere they close, she will not die.”

Then old and young came from every side with roses, the loveliest that bloomed in each garden, but they were not of the right sort. The flower was to be plucked from the Garden of Love. But what rose in all that garden expressed the highest and purest love?

And the poets sang of the loveliest rose in the world,—of the love of maid and youth, and of the love of dying heroes.

“But they have not named the right flower,” said the wise man. “They have not pointed out the place where it blooms in its splendor. It is not the rose that springs from the hearts of youthful lovers, though this rose will ever be fragrant in song. It is not the bloom that sprouts from the blood flowing from the breast of the hero who dies for his country, though few deaths are sweeter than his, and no rose is redder than the blood that flows then. Nor is it the wondrous flower to which man devotes many a sleepless night and much of his fresh life,—the magic flower of science.”

“But I know where it blooms,” said a happy mother, who came with her pretty child to the bedside of the dying queen. “I know where the loveliest rose of love may be found. It springs in the blooming cheeks of my sweet child, when, waking from sleep, it opens its eyes and smiles tenderly at me.”

“Lovely is this rose, but there is a lovelier still,” said the wise man.

“I have seen the loveliest, purest rose that blooms,” said a woman. “I saw it on the cheeks of the queen. She had taken off her golden crown. And in the long, dreary night she carried her sick child in her arms. She wept, kissed it, and prayed for her child.”

“Holy and wonderful is the white rose of a mother's grief,” answered the wise man, “but it is not the one we seek.”

“The loveliest rose in the world I saw at the altar of the Lord,” said the good Bishop, “the young maidens went to the Lord's Table. Roses were blushing and pale roses shining on their fresh cheeks. A young girl stood there. She looked with all the love and purity of her spirit up to heaven. That was the expression of the highest and purest love.”

“May she be blessed,” said the wise man, “but not one of you has yet named the loveliest rose in the world.”

Then there came into the room a child, the queen's little son.

“Mother,” cried the boy, “only hear what I have read.”

And the child sat by the bedside and read from the Book of Him who suffered death upon the cross to save men, and even those who were not yet born. “Greater love there is not.”

And a rosy glow spread over the cheeks of the queen, and her eyes gleamed, for she saw that from the leaves of the Book there bloomed the loveliest rose, that sprang from the blood of Christ shed on the cross.

“I see it!” she said, “he who beholds this, the loveliest rose on earth, shall never die.” 

*************************************

This is part of a series of postings of stories under the category, "Keeping the Public in Public Domain."  The idea behind Public Domain was to preserve our cultural heritage after the authors and their immediate heirs were compensated.  I feel strongly current copyright law delays this intent on works of the 20th century.  My own library of folklore includes so many books within the Public Domain I decided to share stories from them.  I hope you enjoy discovering new stories.  


At the same time, my own involvement in storytelling regularly creates projects requiring research as part of my sharing stories with an audience.  Whenever that research needs to be shown here, the publishing of Public Domain stories will not occur that week.  This is a return to my regular posting of a research project here.  (Don't worry, this isn't dry research, my research is always geared towards future storytelling to an audience.)  Response has convinced me that "Keeping the Public in Public Domain" should continue along with my other postings as often as I can manage it.

Other Public Domain story resources I recommend-

  • There are many online resources for Public Domain stories, maybe none for folklore is as ambitious as fellow storyteller, Yoel Perez's database, Yashpeh, the International Folktales Collection.  I have long recommended it and continue to do so.  He has loaded Stith Thompson's Motif Index into his server as a database so you can search the whole 6 volumes for whatever word or expression you like by pressing one key. http://folkmasa.org/motiv/motif.htm

  • You may have noticed I'm no longer certain Dr. Perez has the largest database, although his offering the Motif Index certainly qualifies for those of us seeking specific types of stories.  There's another site, FairyTalez claiming to be the largest, with "over 2000 fairy tales, folktales, and fables" and they are "fully optimized for phones, tablets, and PCs", free and presented without ads.
    Between those two sites, there is much for story-lovers, but as they say in infomercials, "Wait, there's more!"

The email list for storytellers, Storytell, discussed Online Story Sources and came up with these additional suggestions:        

         - David K. Brown - http://people.ucalgary.ca/~dkbrown/stories.html

         - Richard Martin - http://www.tellatale.eu/tales_page.html

         - Spirit of Trees - http://spiritoftrees.org/featured-folktales

         - Story-Lovers - http://www.story-lovers.com/ is now only accessible through the Wayback Machine, described below, but the late Jackie Baldwin's wonderful site lives on there, fully searchable manually (the Google search doesn't work), at https://archive.org/ .  It's not easy, but go to Story-lovers.com snapshot for December 22 2016  and you can click on SOS: Searching Out Stories to scroll down through the many story topics and click on the story topic that interests you.

       - World of Tales - http://www.worldoftales.com/ 

 
           - Zalka Csenge Virag - http://multicoloreddiary.blogspot.com doesn't give the actual stories, but her recommendations, working her way through each country on a continent, give excellent ideas for finding new books and stories to love and tell.

     
You're going to find many of the links on these sites have gone down, BUT go to the Internet Archive Wayback Machine to find some of these old links.  Tim's site, for example, is so huge probably updating it would be a full-time job.  In the case of Story-Lovers, it's great that Jackie Baldwin set it up to stay online as long as it did after she could no longer maintain it.  Possibly searches maintained it.  Unfortunately Storytell list member, Papa Joe is on both Tim Sheppard's site and Story-Lovers, but he no longer maintains his old Papa Joe's Traveling Storytelling Show website and his Library (something you want to see!) is now only on the Wayback Machine.  It took some patience working back through claims of snapshots but finally in December of 2006 it appears!

    Somebody as of this writing whose stories can still be found by his website is the late Chuck Larkin - http://chucklarkin.com/stories.html.  I prefer to list these sites by their complete address so they can be found by the Wayback Machine, a.k.a. Archive.org, when that becomes the only way to find them.

You can see why I recommend these to you. 

Have fun discovering even more stories

 

Friday, March 15, 2024

Olcott - 2 Short Stories About St. Patrick Driving Snakes Out Of Ireleand

Sunday is St. Patrick's Day and wouldn't you know it, at almost the last minute I was asked to substitute for another storyteller who was supposed to do the program, "but her daughter had a baby so she is preoccupied!"  I've never kissed the Blarney Stone, but how could I refuse?!?  

I thought and looked at my stories and story collections and am sure we'll have lots of fun with the stories I have chosen.  Of course I must include some stories in honor of the good saint telling how it is said he drove all the snakes out of Ireland.  I found two inter-related stories in The Wonder Garden; Nature Myths and Tales...  Frances Jenkins Olcott's book is perfect just as the calendar claims spring is coming near on March 19.  Whether the weather is springlike or not, I hope you enjoy these tales of how St. Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland.  Oh I'm talking reptiles, so don't take this as a political comment!

 
 

You can Google "St. Patrick +snakes images" or go to Pinterest which has lots of images for "driving the snakes out of Ireland", but what I like best is the card from NobleWorksCards.com with this cartoon by Dave Blazek

It's too late to order them for this year, but prowl their site.  I guarantee you will laugh and want some of their cards unless you're as mean as a snake.  (Even their message on their phone is funny!  Call it.)

If you are thinking ahead to future years, I also recommend this lesson plan I found on Pinterest by Keri Logan using the book, The Last Snake in Ireland by Sheila MacGill-Callahan with humorous illustrations of the battle by Will Hillenbrand for what Logan calls a stART (story + ART) lesson.

As the old Irish Blessing goes: May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind be always at your back.  May the sun shine warm upon your face, the rains fall soft upon your fields.  And until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand.

Of course that's Public Domain and may we add to that keep reading and telling stories from all over!

*****************************

This is part of a series of postings of stories under the category, "Keeping the Public in Public Domain."  The idea behind Public Domain was to preserve our cultural heritage after the authors and their immediate heirs were compensated.  I feel strongly current copyright law delays this intent on works of the 20th century.  My own library of folklore includes so many books within the Public Domain I decided to share stories from them.  I hope you enjoy discovering new stories.  


At the same time, my own involvement in storytelling regularly creates projects requiring research as part of my sharing stories with an audience.  Whenever that research needs to be shown here, the publishing of Public Domain stories will not occur that week.  This is a return to my regular posting of a research project here.  (Don't worry, this isn't dry research, my research is always geared towards future storytelling to an audience.)  Response has convinced me that "Keeping the Public in Public Domain" should continue along with my other postings as often as I can manage it.

Other Public Domain story resources I recommend-

  • There are many online resources for Public Domain stories, maybe none for folklore is as ambitious as fellow storyteller, Yoel Perez's database, Yashpeh, the International Folktales Collection.  I have long recommended it and continue to do so.  He has loaded Stith Thompson's Motif Index into his server as a database so you can search the whole 6 volumes for whatever word or expression you like by pressing one key. http://folkmasa.org/motiv/motif.htm

  • You may have noticed I'm no longer certain Dr. Perez has the largest database, although his offering the Motif Index certainly qualifies for those of us seeking specific types of stories.  There's another site, FairyTalez claiming to be the largest, with "over 2000 fairy tales, folktales, and fables" and they are "fully optimized for phones, tablets, and PCs", free and presented without ads.
    Between those two sites, there is much for story-lovers, but as they say in infomercials, "Wait, there's more!"

The email list for storytellers, Storytell, discussed Online Story Sources and came up with these additional suggestions:        

         - David K. Brown - http://people.ucalgary.ca/~dkbrown/stories.html

         - Richard Martin - http://www.tellatale.eu/tales_page.html

         - Spirit of Trees - http://spiritoftrees.org/featured-folktales

         - Story-Lovers - http://www.story-lovers.com/ is now only accessible through the Wayback Machine, described below, but the late Jackie Baldwin's wonderful site lives on there, fully searchable manually (the Google search doesn't work), at https://archive.org/ .  It's not easy, but go to Story-lovers.com snapshot for December 22 2016  and you can click on SOS: Searching Out Stories to scroll down through the many story topics and click on the story topic that interests you.

       - World of Tales - http://www.worldoftales.com/ 

 
           - Zalka Csenge Virag - http://multicoloreddiary.blogspot.com doesn't give the actual stories, but her recommendations, working her way through each country on a continent, give excellent ideas for finding new books and stories to love and tell.

     
You're going to find many of the links on these sites have gone down, BUT go to the Internet Archive Wayback Machine to find some of these old links.  Tim's site, for example, is so huge probably updating it would be a full-time job.  In the case of Story-Lovers, it's great that Jackie Baldwin set it up to stay online as long as it did after she could no longer maintain it.  Possibly searches maintained it.  Unfortunately Storytell list member, Papa Joe is on both Tim Sheppard's site and Story-Lovers, but he no longer maintains his old Papa Joe's Traveling Storytelling Show website and his Library (something you want to see!) is now only on the Wayback Machine.  It took some patience working back through claims of snapshots but finally in December of 2006 it appears!

    Somebody as of this writing whose stories can still be found by his website is the late Chuck Larkin - http://chucklarkin.com/stories.html.  I prefer to list these sites by their complete address so they can be found by the Wayback Machine, a.k.a. Archive.org, when that becomes the only way to find them.

You can see why I recommend these to you. 

Have fun discovering even more stories