I'm passing along a post from the wonderful 5th grade teacher, blogger, and child_lit notable Monica Edinger's blog "Educating Alice," about a very favorite book of my childhood, Elizabeth Goudge's The Little White Horse, and the movie being made of it, due to be out in 2008. Dakota Blue Richards, who plays Lyra in the Golden Compass movie to be released later this year, has been cast as the heroine, Maria Merryweather. This was, in my life, the introduction to the magic and mystery of the Unicorn. Shel Silverstein's song came much later, and then in due time the tapestry in the Cloisters. Now unicorn images are ubiquitous, not least in the lead trinkets coming by the gross on container ships from the East to our discount outlets. But to be a child or pre-teen in the fifties, discovering the magic of Goudge's "little white horse," was to be truly enchanted by story,poetry,and legend.
One of the few poems I can still recite by heart is the title poem from the novel. Its magic still casts its spell as I walk down the street in my by the ravine at night and recite aloud to the air, "It was under the white moon that I saw him/ The little white horse,with neck arched high in pride...."