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Friday, June 21, 2013

A MID SUMMERS NIGHT DREAM

A Mid Summers Night Dream 1935~ James Cagney as Bottom and Anita Louise as  Titania


Aw.. To sleep perchance to dream....yes I know that is Hamlet but at least it is from Shakespeare.Of course my favorite Shakespeare play of all time is A Mid Summers Night Dream. My love of magical woodlands filled with faeries has no bounds. The film I love the best is the old black and white 1935 version. Actually it is amazing what they accomplished with the limited special effects of that era.  The summer solstice( today) has always been a special day for me. I suppose it brings out the long smothered pagan roots of my Irish/Celtic ancestors. Even as I child I wanted to dance under the moonlight with the fireflies and the little people who lived in the ferns.  I remember my Granny Parton telling me that she had seen cats dance one time in the moonlight through her bedroom window. I was enthralled with the story and would climb in bed with her and have her to tell me about it every time I visited her. She would tell me how one night when she couldn't sleep and was restless that she heard some strange music in the woods.
source Jamie Shelman
The moon was big and full and it was a warm  windy Autumn night and the clouds were rolling fast across the face of  the moon.The music got a little louder and she could see something moving near the pine trees. When the clouds passed the moon and its beams shone down into the clearing, she saw the cats- two of them, standing on their hind legs dancing. Granny had much clout with me after this tale. I waited on her hand and foot.  This is the same Granny for whom I named this blog. She was bedridden most of her life and for as long as I could remember she never left the bed. Hanging above her bed was what I refer to as the framed holy trinity collection : Jesus, John F. Kennedy (she was the only Democrat in the family at that time) and Dolly. Yes that Dolly.  Her bed was a like an oasis of treasures... she kept all her favorite things in a box beside her and if you were lucky and she wasn't in a foul mood, she might let you dig through her box. I remember she always had a box of Corn Flakes with the big red rooster on the front, Juicy Fruit gum, hard candies, a guitar pick, brush and mirror, a yucky saccharin sweetener (she was diabetic), a bible, old photos, a lock of her dead daughters hair  and a jar of Ponds cold cream. Granny had the most beautiful skin I had ever seen. She did not have a wrinkle on her face. Her needle kit, on the other hand, scared me to death. She reused the same needle (long before the days of  disposables) and it seemed to be as big as a pencil. She had a whet stone on which she sharpened the end of the needle. I couldn't look when she would give her self the shot. I still cant stand to see a needle enter the skin... I have had my hands in dead bodies, yet a needle brings me to an immediate cold sweat. Granny was prone to  severe mood swings and you did not want to be in the path of one of her raging fits, she was a "thrower". If she got too mad you might just get that jar of cold cream up the side of  your head, or worse a jar of something else...I will let you think on that one. Bed pans grew wings sometimes if the argument was heated enough.  She had 12 children and dozens of grandchildren. I would climb into her bed and read her favorite bible verses. Occasionally she would share some tidbit from the box, but not often. She protected her stuff like a pit bull, but I guess she had to. Her life was a series of tragedies that I hope I can write more about some day, but not tonight.  For tonight is dedicated to past memories of warm summer nights spent with old friends and loved ones before Fibro, hPOTS, CFS and all the other robbers of my soul and energy invaded my life. I long to sit by the pond beneath the moonlight and listen to the frogs, crickets and Nightingales in the hollow again.  But my Granny bed calls... and I saw some fresh bear scat (poop) in the hollow yesterday so I think I will just pop in my 1935 copy of A Mid Summers Night Dream and slap some Ponds on my face and call it the longest day of the year.