“Sleep my little baby-oh
Sleep until you waken
When you wake you’ll see the world
If I’m not mistaken
Kiss a lover
Dance a measure
Find your name
And buried treasure…
Face your life
Its pain, its pleasure
Leave no path untaken”
This past week I grew up with Nobody Owens in whatever little spare time I had. I learned about life in a graveyard. It forever changed the way I will look at graveyards henceforth.
I met some unexpectedly kind souls. And a handful of really dark ones. I learned about Ghosts and Ghouls, the Danse Macabre and Silas. I met new friends and found another treasure I will keep in my bookshelf to revisit every so often.
Once more Neil Gaiman goes and breaks my heart. I don’t know how he does it, but at the end of every book I read I find myself tearing up. Not with sadness, though goodbyes are never easy, but with joy of seeing someone off into a new chapter of their life.
The more I read of his work, the more I come to believe that he has the key to a secret universe from which he plucks his stories. I want to go there to meet all these strange and wonderful characters.
I don’t think I ever want to read another book that doesn’t incite the same longing in me, that wouldn’t make me want to sit down and read more, write more, dream more. Sometimes my heart is set on fire, other times I am being given wings to fly.
Neil Gaiman is inimitable. Not even Terry Pratchett’s books, which I adore ever so much, instill the same inspiration or love in me. And it’s not just that I love the books. I find that I end up loving life a little more.
He is in the UK again this month. There are tickets still to be had, but I won’t be in the country to visit at least one of the events in order to go and give him a hug and thank him for some of the most wonderful books I have ever had the pleasure to read.
And I haven’t even read The Ocean at the end of the Lane yet.