Dear Wendy.

Posted: March 2, 2012 in life
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Dear Wendy,

I am writing on behalf of a group of friends. We have all been together for quite a while now and some thoughts have been troubling many of us. We all share the same creator, a very popular author in her day, and, so, similar problems. Most of us are children (and we remain children…she never had us grow up) and those of us who are not children still bear the same burden, happy tho’ it often is, of our innocence which lets us enjoy what comes into our lives and permits us a measure of forthrightness that is assumed to be free of aggression.

Thus, our roles are to simultaneously charm all and benignly solve the grown people’s problems. These problems, I hasten to add, are not really solved by us. We somehow manage to wrap them up, ignoring a greater social context, in a tidy package which the “adults” accept as a solution and sentimentally express their gratitude to us and to the narrow band of their society. Then, in denial (yes, over the years even we have been reading psychologists), everyone lives happily ever after.

This has begun to chafe.

This has especially chafed a few of our more intellectually curious and well-travelled (in various ways) members of our band. Specifically, Sara and Anne Crewe have brought this up many times lo these long years. They are now married (despite their differences) and, as you can imagine, they have had many discussions of their roles in their story. Anne is quite radical and, over the years watching various struggles around the world, has become quite vocal.  Mary Lennox mostly has tried to stay out of the arguments, tending her garden; but, sometimes she has been quite fierce about it. There are days she says she just needs to pull weeds. 

Tembarom has brought many of us together for long discussions, acting as our facilitator (another wonderful modern word!). He is very good at listening and asking the right questions; but, even he has been unable to solve our problems of eventual resentment at being so used and the feelings of many of us that our “solutions” did not really help. Certainly, any good deed is that; but, we found ourselves more in the position of being rescuers rather than allies in any struggle. Over the years this has come to seem to us short-sighted as well as an awful responsibility. 

Finally, Colin suggested that I write to you. (He reads quite widely, you know, and you may be pleased to hear that he has been following your column for some time.)

So, Miss Wendy, we are actually quite many, and we are aware that we have been such a family for so many years that we are a little worried that we might be too much of a “bloc” for your group; but, do you think your working group could find space for the children of Frances Hodgson Burnett? Whatever your decision is, I look forward to hearing from you and will remain

Yours Truly, Cedric Errol, Lord Fauntleroy


Dear Ceddie,

An enthusiastic welcome to the Fictional Characters for Real Life Social Change Working Group! It’s given us real heart to see all the generations coming together in the Occupy Movement at large, and Aunt Jemima and Rosie the Riveter and I were just saying over a few glasses of sparkling rose the other night that we need more young ‘uns around. For one thing, none of us know how to text. Let alone tweet.

In other words, we need you.

You guys couldn’t help us out with this social media thing, could you? We need somebody to handle our Facebook page. What about Mary Lennox? There can’t be much going on in the garden this time of year.

Let us know. Email is fine. We still do it the old-fashioned way, just on our laptops. But maybe one of you could help me upgrade from my old TracFone to a Droid.

Thanks in advance, and looking forward to it all.

Yours in solidarity, Ask Wendy


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