Friday, October 22, 2010

Fairy Tale Fridays: The Old Gravestone

Special Thanks to my Personal Faery Friend for the Button Art: Ye Olde Faery Shoppe 

This week's selection for Fairy Tale Fridays takes us to another tale in Hans Christian Andersen's collection, The Old Gravestone.  This short tale has so much potential to go on the spooky side, just in time for a spooky holiday, but it does not!  Andersen's way with words leaves us with actually a sweet story with an ending to live by!

Just as in last week's tale, The Little Mermaid, Andersen's opening paragraph is catching, wanting me to read more . . .
In one of the smaller towns of Denmark, one evening in August, the whole family was gathered in the living room of the home of one of the wealthier citizens.  The weather outside was still summer-mild, but the evenings had begun to grow darker; the lamp had been lighted and the curtains drawn, so only the flowers on the window sill enjoyed the moonlight.  The conversation was about an old stone that lay out in the yard.  The children liked to play upon it, and the maids, when the sun shone, put the newly polished copper pots and pans out to dry on it.  It had once been a gravestone.

Eerie!!!  Does a little Twilight Zone music run through your mind at that last sentence?!?

From there, Andersen then takes us on a little journey to the past, remembering this beautiful married couple that fell in love and lived happily ever after until the death of the wife.  The husband is devastated and dies a short time afterwards.  However, the story doesn't end there.  It goes on to then look at the gravestone from a young boy's perspective and leaves us with an ending that just leaves you with . . . "Aaaaaaahhhhhhhh."
The seed planted in your soul this night shall grow and produce poetry.  For all that is truly good and all that is truly beautiful on this earth is not forgotten, it lives in songs and legends.
What reactions did you have to this tale?  Was it what you were expecting?

Friday, October 29th:  The Juniper Tree by The Brothers Grimm
Friday, November 5th:  Fairy Tale Food & Fun (more details to come!)
Friday, November 12th:  "The Tale of the Three Brothers" from The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling


  1. I actually really liked this story and the theme of remembrance through storytelling. From the title I was expecting something a little more macabre - especially since tongues were cut out and feet were bleeding in "The Little Mermaid" - but it turned out to be a surprisingly sweet and somber story.

  2. Also, just to give a heads-up, I'm not sure how many FTF's I'll be around for in November since I'm participating in NaNoWriMo. I'll try to join in for one or two, but if I don't check in too much, don't worry, I'll for sure be back in December. :)

  3. I was expecting something different from the title, too. It's kind of an odd though, though, isn't it? Having someone who you never knew's gravestone in your yard?

  4. lisa :) . . . I agree! It was not what I was expecting, but the message was wonderful! Good luck with NaNoWriMo!!! I hope it goes well for you this month!

    carolsnotebook . . . It is a little odd! But, I guess if you can get some good rock cheap, why not?!? LOL!! :)


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