A Month of Short Stories 2015, Day Sixteen – Cinnamon

The last two years, for the month of June, I wrote about a short story that was available online each day of the month… you can see the list for 2014 and 2015 in the comments for this page. It seemed like a good idea at the time. My blog readership fell precipitously and nobody seemed to give a damn about what I was doing – which was a surprising amount of work.

Because of this result, I’m going to do it again this year.

Today’s story, for day sixteen – Cinnamon, by Neil Gaiman

Read it online here:


Cinnamon was a princess, a long time ago, in a small hot country, where everything was very old. Her eyes were pearls, which gave her great beauty, but meant she was blind. Her world was the colour of pearls: pale white and pink, and softly glowing.

After yesterday’s story, a tale ancient and local, we come to today’s – written by Neil Gaiman – another writer of local color… but his locality is the postmodern world of the internet and the graphic novel.

Cinnamon is a short work in the form of a fable. The parents of a blind and apparently mute princess offer a great reward to anyone that can find a way to get her to talk. After a few failures the challenge is taken up by the most unlikely of suitors.

It’s a well-written and entertaining read. Gaiman can’t resist an inside or sly joke when one presents itself (the reason for the princess’s quietude can be guessed before even reading the story) and that sometimes hurts the prose and obscures the point. But it does add some extra entertainment to the proceedings.

And in this day and age, nobody can afford to turn down a little extra entertainment.


At the Cottonwood Art Festival, Richardson, Texas.

Click for a larger version on Flickr

William Blake – The Tyger

Tyger, Tyger, burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare seize the fire?

And what shoulder, & what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?

What the hammer? what the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

When the stars threw down their spears
And water’d heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

Tyger, Tyger, burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?