The Fairy Reel

The Fairy Reel

The Fairy Reel by Neil Gaiman If I were young as once I was, and dreams and death more distant then, I wouldn't split my soul in two, and keep half in...

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The Fairy Reel by Neil Gaiman If I were young as once I was, and dreams and death more distant then, I wouldn't split my soul in two, and keep half in the world of men, So half of me would stay at home, and strive for Faërie in vain, While all the while my soul would stroll up narrow path, down crooked lane, And there would meet a fairy lass and smile and bow with kisses three, She'd pluck wild eagles from the air and nail me to a lightning tree And if my heart would run from her or flee from her, be gone from her, She’d wrap it in a nest of stars and then she'd take it on with her Until one day she'd tire of it, all bored with it and done with it. She'd leave it by a burning brook, and off brown boys would run with it. They'd take it and have fun with it and stretch it long and cruel and thin,

They'd slice it into four and then they'd string with it a violin. And every day and every night they'd play upon my heart a song So plaintive and so wild and strange that all who heard it danced along And sang and whirled and sank and trod and skipped and slipped and reeled and rolled Until, with eyes as bright as coals, they'd crumble into wheels of gold . . . . But I am young no longer now, for sixty years my heart's been gone To play its dreadful music there, beyond the valley of the sun. I watch with envious eyes and mind, the single–souled, who dare not feel The wind that blows beyond the moon, who do not hear the Fairy Reel. If you don't hear the Fairy Reel, they will not pause to steal your breath. When I was young I was a fool. So wrap me up in dreams and death.

The Day the Saucers Came by Neil Gaiman That day, the saucers landed. Hundreds of them, golden, Silent, coming down from the sky like great snowflakes, And the people of Earth stood and stared as they descended, Waiting, dry-mouthed, to find what waited inside for us And none of us knowing if we would be here tomorrow But you didn’t notice it because

That day, the day the saucers came, by some coincidence, Was the day that the graves gave up their dead And the zombies pushed up through soft earth or erupted, shambling and dull-eyed, unstoppable, Came towards us, the living, and we screamed and ran, But you did not notice this because

On the saucer day, which was the zombie day, it was Ragnarok also, and the television screens showed us A ship built of dead-men’s nails, a serpent, a wolf, All bigger than the mind could hold, and the cameraman could Not get far enough away, and then the Gods came out But you did not see them coming because

On the saucer-zombie-battling-gods day the floodgates broke And each of us was engulfed by genies and sprites Offering us wishes and wonders and eternities And charm and cleverness and true brave hearts and pots of gold While giants feefofummed across the land, and killer bees, But you had no idea of any of this because

That day, the saucer day the zombie day The Ragnarok and fairies day, the day the great winds came And snows, and the cities turned to crystal, the day All plants died, plastics dissolved, the day the Computers turned, the screens telling us we would obey, the day Angels, drunk and muddled, stumbled from the bars,

And all the bells of London were sounded, the day Animals spoke to us in Assyrian, the Yeti day, The fluttering capes and arrival of the Time Machine day, You didn’t notice any of this because you were sitting in your room, not doing anything not ever reading, not really, just looking at your telephone, wondering if I was going to call.