Little Red Riding Hood; a fairy tale that has fascinated and infuriated me. I have struggled for so long with the twisted, crimson leads of this yarn. I kept loosing my way in that flower studded forest, and even got roped into long and demented conversations with a lonely old woman over tea. For years I lay on her rotting roof, searching the stars beyond the dense canopy for answers. Was it wolf or man? And who was that child in red, really? Could she have been a Native American medicine woman on a mythical journey to her future? Or perhaps a delinquent teen who found refuge in her estranged grandmother’s cabin? As with any fairy tale, the possibilities are daunting. But nothing I wrote spun the true tale of grief and beauty I knew was at its heart. Until I wrote Bone Tree.
Bone Tree started out as an unsatisfactory poem, but the story it told was just the right one. I decided to flesh it out a bit, alter it from poem to short prose, and there she stood, the grown woman with a broken past, finally able to hang up her old cloak for the last time. I sent Bone Tree off to a promising literary magazine that was only just starting up; Far Off Places. Far off for me, indeed– they are based in Edinburgh, Scotland! Acceptance was such a thrill, and knowing that my little piece would be read half a world away made it that much more exciting! Today I am reading Issue 1 for the first time. The poetry, stories and gorgeous art within are all themed to retold fairy tales (for this issue), and every piece is rich and deserving. I implore you, beg you, dare you to take a stroll through this dark and delightful Far Off land. And do bring your axe, just in case.