by Kelley Smoot Garrett, Austin, Texas
This page brings the emotions of the story into play, as Princess April is like any little girl who at first revels in being free of adult rules. The ride on the grasshopper and free-flowing honey from friendly bees make life outside the Enchanted Forest a child’s heaven.
But after all, Princess April is a little girl, even if she is a fairy, and she, too, is sad to be alone at the end of the day, outside of home, with the unfamiliar trees, whipping about in the wind. At this point, we also find our first anachronistic use of a word that has fallen on hard times since it was originally penned into Princess April Morning-Glory and that’s the word ‘gay.’
When Letitia’s scribed that “all her gay companions had long since disappeared,” the word ‘gay’ meant just that – a happy-go-lucky person; one who laughed and enjoyed themselves for they were gay. In 1934 Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire danced their way – gaily, one might add – through that year’s hit musical, The Gay Divorcee. In 1941, while readily accepted as nothing more than a good word to use for someone’s pleasing demeanor, ‘gay’ carried none of today’s baggage, and this is the first time in our story were the user might feel a jarring sensation that they are really no longer in the 21st century, while reading our tale.
Until next week dear reader…