Thursday, July 02, 2009
Neverland - a place of dreams
Michael Jackson tried to find Neverland in this life by creating his dream ranch - ‘Neverland’.
Perhaps now he has moved on to search for the Ethereal Neverland!
In a previous post I wrote about the movie, Finding Neverland, in which Johnny Depp, (JM Barrie) introduces Kate Winslet (Sylvia Llewelyn Davies) to the wondrous realm of the imagination – the Neverland he created on paper and immortalised in his play, Peter Pan.
When I was a girl, I saw Peter Pan performed on stage as a pantomime and was always of the impression that Barrie had invented that name - Neverland.
Last week, however, I read Laurence Bergreen’s, Over the Edge of the World , the true and often disturbing story of Ferdinand Magellan’s Circumnavigation of the Globe.
In this real-life odyssey, I read of several early references to Neverland and realised how ignorant I was.
It seems this mystical place, Neverland, has been around for a long time.
Pliny the Elder, who died in the cataclysmic eruption of Vesuvius in 79AD, wrote of such an enchanted realm.
And the early adventurers/explorers; Prester John, Marco Polo and Sir John Mandeville, not only wrote about it, but went searching for it.
Bergreen dedicates one of his chapters on Magellan to the ‘Neverlands’ and makes reference to Stephen Frimmer’s book, Neverlands, which ‘offers a diverting introduction to the subject of mythical kingdoms’.
But, today, with little of the world unexplored, where do we go to find this elusive place?
And does it really exist?
In the movie, Finding Neverland, Barrie is adamant that Neverland is real, but to go to this wonderful place you must Believe.
When interviewed, co-actor, Dustin Hoffman, said Neverland is a metaphor for a journey to the imagination.
And that Neverland exists for all of us in the wish part of the brain.
Obviously it has been around for a long time.
Let us hope Neverland never dies.
Pic: from cover of the DVD - Finding Neverland