I am taking a course toward my certificate in creative writing at UofT called Creative Writing through Reading. Our first assignment was to write a 500 word parody of a familiar folk tale, with our own spin on it. I chose the Schneewittchen (German for Snow White) by the Brothers Grimm:
Once upon a time, a child of extreme and rare beauty was born. She was born with the very auspicious astrological alignment of a new moon on the date of her birth, so her parents the King and Queen of Newbury named her accordingly. New Moon’s mother died shortly after her birth, so she was raised never knowing the love and compassion of a mother’s touch.
Soon after the death of his first wife the King remarried. Although his wife was beautiful, she spent all her days trying to make herself look younger. She regularly visited her cosmetic surgeon and demanded;
“at whatever cost
make all my wrinkles lost
make me the fairest in the land…”
The Queen watched reality shows, read the tabloids, kept up to date with all the fashion trends and ensured she had the best of everything money could buy. She was obsessed with herself and relied heavily on mass media to validate her beauty.
The Queen was insanely jealous of New Moon, and did not want any competition for her husband’s attention. Finally she hired a notorious hit man to dispose of her inconvenient step daughter.
The hit man was unable to execute the order to kill such a sweet, beautiful, young child. Instead, he arranged to make her disappear by shipping her off to India as part of his illegitimate import/export business. To the Queen’s mind, New Moon was dead, and her envious heart was at ease (as well as an envious heart can be at ease).
New Moon’s “package” was abandoned in a remote forest in India. She was so frightened she hid under a large tree and cried. An elephant named Ganeshi approached her and told her there was nothing to fear, that all obstacles in her life would be removed, as long as she had faith. The elephant led her to a quaint ashram high in the mountains. There were 7 monks living at this ashram – yama, niyama, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana and karma. The monks cared for New Moon as if she was their own child.
New Moon lived a life in balance and harmony with nature, she mastered the 8 limbs ofastanga yoga at the ashram. Through deep introspection she was able to attain an inner sense of balanced calm, despite everything she had been through. Her enlightenment enabled her to express her individuality in many creative endeavors. She became a skilled writer, and over the course of her years at the ashram, codified the ancient Yoga Sutras written by Patanjali. She introduced Yoga to the rest of the world with her book and teachings. New Moon became a worldwide sensation. She radiated beauty and grace and inspired many to live a life of inner peace.
During a TV appearance on a popular talk show, the King immediately recognized his daughter. Even with the passing of the years, her beauty was unmistakable. New Moon and the King were reunited. The King had already divorced his second wife, who was now in rehab for plastic surgery addiction and depression.