Fairy Tale Friday: Odds and Ends
I was flipping through my collection of Grimm’s fairy tales looking for something to write about for today when I realized just how many very short, very odd stories the Grimms collected.
There are the old standards, of course — Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella, Snow White and Rose Red, the Bremen Town-Musicians, and Rumpelstilkskin. But in between all of those better-known stories are a few that are just plain bizarre, sometimes disturbing. So, in honour of the strangeness of the Grimms, here are a few fairy tales that will never be made into Disney films:
Frau Trude: An obstinate little girl goes to visit the local wacko, a woman named Frau Trude. Her parents have warned her that Frau Trude is bad news, but she won’t listen and goes anyway. Her parents promptly disown her. The Frau turns out to be a witch, transforms the little girl into a block of wood, and burns her. The End.
The Singing Bone: A shepherd discovers a bone in his fields which, when used as a mouthpiece for his horn, sings out that it was originally a man who was murdered by his brother. The bones are laid to rest in a cemetery while the murderous brother is sewn up in a sack and drowned.
The Straw, the Coal, and the Bean: A poor old woman is cooking a pot of beans over a fire. In her preparations, a straw has escaped the kindling, a coal fell out of the fire, and a bean has fallen from the pot. They band together and have wacky adventures until they try to cross a stream using the straw as a bridge. The straw breaks and dies, sending the coal flying into the stream where he goes out with a hiss. The bean, the asshole that he is, laughs so hard at this that he bursts his skin and a tailor has to come and sew him back up.
Actually, I can kind of see that last one becoming a Disney feature, can’t you? :P
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