Sunday, June 10, 2012

Reflections of Little Green Men

Just two days before Ray Bradbury died, we read Lauren Miller's essay "The Cosmic Menagerie" from the Jun 4/Jun 11 issue of The New Yorker.

Her piece traces the earliest depictions of extra-terrestrials in literature, how those depictions reflect the cultures they were dreamt up in, and how that in turn reflects on us. You should absolutely read it.

Her writing reminded us that we have been seriously deficient in making good on promises to read more of Ray Bradbury's writing. Then the man himself departed this world for another and we felt strange about the coincidence.

Imagine our further beweirdment when we flipped forward several pages and found a short essay in the very same issue written by the Martian Chronicles author himself.

Bradbury's "Take Me Home" is exactly the kind of work that makes him an American treasure. In just one page he captures the magic and melancholy of childhood wonder like he's catching fireflies in a jar. If ever there was a link to click on, this is it.

[Edward Gorey illustration swiped from The New Yorker]