Robin Redbreast

Robin Redbreast
Birds can represent the fluttering, darting thoughts of intuition. This is why little birds helped Cinderella help herself.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Cinderella #50 from Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes (1961)

"She's prettier without her head." Illustrated by Blake, Q.

Note: contains violence. Once upon a time in England, lived a boy who told stories and made rhymes.  Here is one that he wrote when he grew up:
“I guess you think you know this story.  You don’t.  The real one’s much more gory. The phoney one, the one you know, was cooked up years and years ago, And made to sound all soft and sappy 
Just to keep the children happy.  
Mind you, they got the first bit right, the bit where, in the dead of night, The Ugly Sisters, jewels and all, Departed for the Palace Ball, 
While darling little Cinderella Was locked up in the slimy cellar, Where rats who wanted things to eat, Began to nibble at her feet.  She bellowed, ‘Help!’ and ‘Let me out!’ The Magic Fairy heard her shout.  Appearing in a blaze of light, She said, ‘My dear, are you alright?’  Well, no, Cinderella said, she was not alright.  She wanted to go to the ball.  So the fairy godmother said, " Hang on a tick! ‘ She gave her wand a might flick And quickly, in no time at all, Cindy was at the Palace Ball!  It made the Ugly Sisters wince, to see her dancing with the Prince.  She held him very tight and pressed
Herself against his manly chest....” But when the clock struck midnight, she ran.  Unfortunately for her, the Prince grabbed ahold of her dress. “As Cindy shouted, ‘Let me go!’ The dress was ripped from head to toe.  She ran out in her underwear, And lost one slipper on the stair.  The Prince was on it, like a dart, He pressed it to his pounding heart, ‘The girl this slipper fits,’ he cried, 
'Tomorrow morn shall be my bride! I’ll visit every house in town Until I’ve tracked the maiden down!‘ Then, rather carelessly, I fear, 
 he placed it on a crate of beer.  At once, one of the Ugly Sisters, (the one whose face was blotched with blisters) Sneaked up and grabbed the dainty shoe, And quickly flushed it down the loo.  Then, in its place she calmly put The slipper from her own left foot.  Aha, you see, the plot grows thicker.  Cindy’s luck was looking sicker.  Next day, the Prince was charging down To knock on all the doors in town.  In every house, the tension grew.  Who was the owner of the shoe? The shoe was long and very wide.  (A normal foot got lost inside.) 
Also it smelled a wee bit icky.  (The owner’s feet were hot and sticky.) Thousands of eager people came To try it on, but all in vain.  Now came the Ugly Sister’s go.  One tried it on.  The Prince screamed, ‘No!’ But she screamed, ‘Yes! It fits! Whoopee!  So now you’ve got to marry me!’ The Prince went white from ear to ear.  He muttered, ‘Let’s get out of here.’ ‘Oh, no you don’t! You’ve made a vow!  There’s no way you can back out now!’  ‘Off with her head!’ the Prince roared back.  They chopped in off with one big whack!  This pleased the Prince.  He smiled and said, ‘She’s prettier without her head.’ Then up came Sister Number Two, Who yelled, ‘Now I will try the shoe!’  ‘Try this instead!’ the Prince yelled back.  He swung his trusty sword, and smack— Her head went crashing to the ground.  It bounced a bit and rolled around, In the kitchen, peeling spuds, Cinderella heard the thuds Of bouncing heads upon the floor, And poked her own head round the door. ‘What’s all the racket?’ Cindy cried.  ‘Mind your own bizz,’ the Prince replied.  Poor Cindy’s heart was torn to shreds.  My Prince! she thought.  He chops off heads! How could I marry anyone who does that sort of thing for fun? The Prince cried, ‘Who’s this dirty slut? Off with her nut! Off with her nut!’ Just then, all in a blaze of light, The Magic Fairy hove in sight,  Her magic wand went swoosh! and swish! ‘Cindy,’ she cried, ‘come make a wish! Wish anything and have no doubt That I will make it come about!’  Cindy answered, ‘Oh kind fairy, This time I shall be more wary.  No more Princes, no more money.  I have had my taste of honey.  I’m wishing for a decent man.  They’re hard to find.  D’you think you can?  Within a minute Cinderella Was married to a lovely feller, A simple jam-maker by trade, Who sold good home-made marmalade.  Their house was filled with smiles and laughter And they were happy ever after.”
Notes:  Roald Dahl lived through a very difficult childhood. (Read, 2 Titles By Roald Dahl: "Boy" & "The BFG") and delights in putting in the gory details.  When people are cruel, he likes to revel in the details. 
Montessori Connection: Literature/Poetry/Verse
6-9: The Real Winnie the Pooh, A.A. Milne (1924) 
1. Ask an adult to read poems to you from Now We are Six or When we were very young
2. Try to memorize a short one like, Happiness: John had a great big Waterproof Boots on; John had a Great Big Waterproof Hat; John had a Great Big Waterproof Mackintosh—And that (Said John) is That. 
Roald Dahl
9-12: 
1.Try and memorize a longer poem of your choice.  There are some good ones by Roald Dahl, including The Crocodile, from Dirty Beasts: "No animal is half so vile As Crocky-Wock the crocodile. On Saturday's she likes to crunch Six juicy children for her lunch, And he especially enjoys just three of each, three girls, three boys..." (p. 143)

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