|Jeff de Boer, The Seven Samurai Mice|
2005, copper, brass, mixed media, 4.5" x 3.5" x 2"
Back in 2007, I wrote a post about de Boer called
In the Realm of the Mouse Warrior.
From 4:45 a.m. until 9:15 p.m. yesterday, my life was given over to attending a gigantic and nigh-endless wrestling tournament. I am a wee bit . . . exhausted, without ever so much as tangling with an opponent. And I have a dire need to work on some essay commissions. So maybe today I'll give you some thoughts from a book I'm reading, On Stories and Other Essays on Literature, a collection of essays by C. S. Lewis. Here are some interesting snips from Walter Hooper's introduction.
This is a charming note:
C. S. Lewis can't have been more than five or six years old when he wrote, in a notebook he much later passed on to me, a story called 'To Mars and Back' and another little romance about chivalrous mice and rabbits riding out in full armour to kill cats. --Walter HooperHere is a well-known quote from one famous name to another:
Just as speech is invention about objects and ideas, so myth is invention about truth. We have come from God, and inevitably the myths woven by us, though they contain error, will also reflect a splintered fragment of the true light, the eternal truth that is with God. Indeed only by myth-making, only by become a 'sub-creator' and inventing stories, can Man ascribe to the state of perfection that he knew before the Fall. --J. R. R. Tolkien to Lewis, quoted by HooperAnd here is another of the same, in the reverse direction:
Tollers, there is too little of what we really like in stories. I am afraid we shall have to write some ourselves. --Hooper quotes Lewis to Tolkien, not long before he wrote Out of the Silent PlanetLewis and drafts of writing:
Except for his academic works, Lewis never wrote more than a single draft of his novels, which indeed suggests that the stories were worked out in his head before he put pen to paper. --Walter HooperHere's a riposte to those who have attacked adult readers for reading books written for children or young adults:
When I was ten, I read fairy stories in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. WhenI became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up. --Hooper quotes Lewis, from "Three Ways of Writing for Children"