Sunday, July 22, 2007

I finished the Deathly Hallows in about seven hours yesterday. Boy it's good! Couldn't put it down. I queued for an hour to get it, and midway through my queueing I was joined by Andrew who went to a quieter bookshop and got his in under ten minutes. Then we went and drank lots of tea and read together! I won't tell you anything about what happens or who dies, and I'll try not to gloat too much that I know.

However I am now feeling somewhat lost. There is a profound sense of having finished with something the like of which I will never see again. I now don't know what to read, as very little seems to have the same appeal anymore. It's odd that I was so easily satisfied before, knowing the last Harry Potter was still to come, and now no other book really seems worth reading. I'm sure this feeling will pass - it must simply be the realisation of the event anticipated for so long. For months it was "on the way", for seven hours it was "reading it now", and now it's "all over".

In the aftermath of Potter, I picked up something I haven't read for a long time: Isobel Carmody's collection of short stories, Green Monkey Dreams. I had forgotten how intriguing and otherworldly her stories can be. I sometimes think she is like me: the world as it is isn't enough, or is too much, and must be pushed away in favour of fantasy and dream worlds. She often writes of events supposed to have taken place after some great apocalyptic catastrophe, the world wiped clean of the scourge of humanity as it is, and started anew. She writes, too, of human nature and the ways in which we delude ourselves. Poor Poppy, who pretends to be a monster and chases her siblings, runs the fastest to escape herself. Rian, who learns anguish through loving and losing. Matthew, who sacrifices happiness for the chance to fit in. And Noah. Noah embraces his different-ness, uses it as a defence, is proud of it. Noah knows he has fairy blood, even though he's an orphan. I like Noah.

Stories make me wish there was something different about me. Why don't I have fairy blood, why aren't I a witch, or a gypsy, or the daughter of a god? I guess that's escapism, pure and simple. I'd rather be anything rather than the painfully normal person I actually am. I still want Hagrid to knock down my door and say, "You're a witch, Stacy!" Silly, I know. The only person likely to knock down my door is the landlady, and she'd only say "Clean up the back yard, Stacy!"


homo escapeons said...

Peasant 1: "We have found a witch, may we burn her?"

Sir Bedevere:
"What makes you think she's a witch?"

Peasant 2: "She turned me into a newt!"

Sir Bedevere:
"A newt?"

Peasant 2: "I got better."


Woman: "I'm not a witch, I'm not a witch!"

Sir Bedevere:
"But you are dressed as one."

Woman: "They dressed me up like this. And this isn't my nose, it's a false one."

Sir Bedevere:
"There are ways of telling whether she is a witch."

Peasant 1: "Are there? Oh well, tell us."

Sir Bedevere:
"Tell me. What do you do with witches?"

Peasant 1: "BURN THEM!"

Sir Bedevere:
"And what do you burn, apart from witches?"

Peasant 1: "More witches?"
Peasant 2: "Wood?"

Sir Bedevere:
"Good. Now, why do witches burn?"

Peasant 3: ...because they're made of... wood?

Sir Bedevere:
"Good. So how do you tell whether she is made of wood?"

Peasant 1: "Build a bridge out of her."

Sir Bedevere:
"But can you not also build bridges out of stone?"

Peasant 1: "Oh yeah."

Sir Bedevere:
"Does wood sink in water?"

Peasant 1: "No, no, it floats! It floats!"

Sir Bedevere:
"No, no. What else floats in water?"

Peasant 1: Bread!
Peasant 2: Apples!
Peasant 3: Very small rocks!
Peasant 1: Cider!
Peasant 2: Gravy!
Peasant 3: Cherries!
Peasant 1: Mud!
Peasant 2: Churches! Churches!
Peasant 3: Lead! Lead!

King Arthur: "A Duck!"

Sir Bedevere:
"Exactly! So, logically..."

Peasant 1: "If she... weighs the same as a duck... she's made of wood."

Sir Bedevere:
"And therefore?"

Peasant 2: A witch!
Crowd: A witch!

Sir Bedevere:
"We shall use my larger scales! Right, remove the supports!"

Accused Witch: "It's a fair cop."

Menchie said...

Well at least I am halfway already. :D

But maybe I should read it more slowly, just to savor it a bit more?

Steve said...

My dear Stace,

There is that bit of magic in all of us, we don't see it in ourselves cos we are to busy looking at it in others.....

You may not be a fairy but there is something magical about you!

Aidan said...

It was an aweseome read....
cant belive you spend the whole day in the food court:)

Within Without said...

You're anything but ordinary, Stace.

The fact you can let yourself disappear into HP or any other book shows how extraordinary you are.

Keep being the witch or daughter of a god that you want, in your exciting mind's eye, to secretly be.

It will bring who you really are to life and give life to who you really are.

lee said...

Trust homo esacapeons to post that here -haha. Someone gave me the answer about hp - but in a cryptic way that I'm still trying to make sense of. I'm not a hp fan, but still want to know! Stace -it is possible to go to another world in your imagination - your own place.

Cazzie!!! said...

I think this is why Harry Potter stories have this profound connection with people. It is a story about a boy who grows up rather sadly without family and yet he is gifted (although he doesnt see it as a gift more a curse) with this magic that we wish we could have in our lives to wave a wand and make it all better.
My wish is that I could have been at a school like HW's and sit at a table with all that food and all the candles floating aboveme and ghosts flitting around in the air!!

I felt the way you did after finishing some of the Bryce Courtenay series of we never will see another book like it. You feel you know the characters so intimately, they become part of your life don't they?

JolietJake said...

I like the sauce, not too keen on the books/movies. I have atually studied the occult so I find HP a bit lame compared to what really goes on out there. You'll be surprised how easy it is to become a witch but on the whole I'd advise against that sort of thing, I stay away from it these days.