Wednesday, April 17, 2013

A-Z April Challenge O is for Princess Lynda Scheherazade

I am participating in the A-Z April Challenge
Today’s letter is O for:
Once upon a time…

I have been telling stories to kids since I was a kid.  There is something about starting a tale with “Once upon a time” that inspires my creativity.  Those four familiar words entice my imagination to freely wander with abandon through the magical world of make believe.

It has been my experience that whenever I begin a “Once upon a time” tale,  my listeners are immediately engaged.    As I look into their eyes, bright with wonder,  I intuitively sense that they are  seeing, so clearly,  the word pictures I am painting for them.

Of course they are free, as they often do, to contribute their own texture and color to what eventually becomes a collaborative mural of memories.

My joy is complete when I hear the words, “Tell me a story…
"Once upon a time in a land far, far, away there lived a little girl and little boy, who looked just like you.
"And what do you think their names were?”

"Once upon a time" is a stock phrase that has been used in some form since at least 1380 (according to the Oxford English Dictionary) in storytelling in the English language, and seems to have become a widely accepted convention for opening oral narratives by around 1600. These stories often then end with "and they all lived happily ever after," or, originally, “happily until their deaths."

But I am Princess Lynda Scheherazade, my stories never end, because there is always another “Once upon a time…

15 comments:

  1. "Once upon a time..." the most powerful phrase in the English language.

    Great post and posts!

    Looking forward to more.

    --
    Tim Brannan
    The Other Side and The Witch
    Red Sonja: She-Devil with a Sword
    The Freedom of Nonbelief

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    1. Thanks for your kind words and for visiting.

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  2. Lovely post, and thanks for the background info on the phrase. I remember listening to stories as a kid, and that phrase always held a certain kind of magic.

    Silvia @ Silvia Writes

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    1. Yes, what was most interesting to me how long that phrase has been in use.

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  3. I remember most of the stories when I was a kid starting with- Once Upon A Time.

    Dark Thoughts Blog

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    1. Me too. I loved the magic of fairy tales.

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  4. ahhhh, once upon a time. The art of telling a story vs reading a story have been lost. Families no longer pass stories down person to person. Nice memories. A-Z

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    1. I wonder if books will eventually be obsolete one day.
      Thanks for visiting.

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  5. Here in Tenerife, where we get Spanish television, "Once upon a time" translates as "Eras una vez" - I still don't know what their equivalent ending is.

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    1. That is so interesting.
      I love your blog, btw.
      Thanks for visiting.

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  6. I once heard that the modern equivalent would be, "Yo! Check it out..."

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    1. That’s very funny, Mark and probably very true.

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  7. I found Scheherazade's story a fascinating tale within itself.

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  8. They are magic words that get you in the mindset to visit magical places. :)

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  9. Yes, tell me a good story.

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