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With the latest telling, the tale goes something like this: she overcomes the illusion of what’s obvious and sees through to appreciate what’s on the inside. She kisses those slimy lips (lip balm, really) and transforms him. The young man, no longer green, glows – basking in new found love. She rescues him from the belief that no one ever noticed him.

Perhaps, but was that the whole story? It doesn’t mention the other princesses who didn’t kiss you first.

I can’t recount all the girls – some of them knockouts by the standards of the day, and others beautiful in their own, unconventional ways – who shyly revealed to me how much they desired you, once it was known we were an item.

Desired. Not that they had a crush on you, or thought you were cute, or sweet, or a nice guy (but just never thought about dating).

They wanted you.
You thought you weren’t noticed?
They were dying for you to notice them.
Imagine my consternation in realizing that only your quiet nature saved you from being saved by anyone but me.

* Before You Find Your Handsome Prince....You Have To Kiss A Lot Of Frogs *

By Parée

They also missed the part where you saved me.

It was too easy to be drawn in by the intellectual, worldly young people who would talk into all hours of the night.
I reveled in the heady excitement of young, privileged life – and especially in the attentions of the young men, who boasted of storming the woods together, as equals: knights and war maidens discovering worlds and plundering kingdoms together.

I was flattered at first when worshipped as first a princess, then a queen. Imagine my disappointment to realize that most were simply overgrown boys – not truly gentleman who might graciously acknowledge a loss to worthy opponent. We eager, clever girls, wishing to be both ladies and knights, too – wielded our rapier wits once too often in verbal sparring matches, and in the court of study.

Bested by us once too often to shrug it off as chance, the canniest of ambitious lads resorted to flattery – a redirection of attention, familiar and comfortable to all (most) of us. So many marriages were made with such courtliness – and so many have ended, far from their fairy tale beginnings. Those who refused to settle were unfairly labeled, the more dim males of the lot used as megaphones of most of the species’ calumny. They meant to harness us to their will.

Fear of the unknown and the unexpected engenders myths. So does finding little substance behind them. There was a clarion call to “kill the beast” – except all of us ladies playing at knights were the beast.

You know the words.
You and some of your compatriots – you heard them, read them, and recoiled at the base tactics.
You and those few, regardless of how you might jibe me and my kind for our femininity, solemnly stood by us and lent us the strength. The very gender that cut us down was lending us the strength we needed.

Your maleness saved us.
We hated it.
We wanted our own feminine strengths to be enough.
We could not do without you, without your strength.

We realized we did not need them, those weak princelings who ruled by point of their swords.
But we needed you – your wisdom, your brains, your kindness and fairness.
We fell in love with you for sharing the same qualities we valued most in ourselves.

I chose to kiss you, and listen thereafter for croaks of wisdom emerging from deep within. It’s not often that you speak. But when you do, you hone unerringly into the heart of the matter. And you trust me to know to do what’s best: for me, and us together.


Inspired by Prompt B – Day 2 of the Scintilla project

Written by marginfades

March 15, 2012 at 2:45 pm

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