Friday, April 23, 2010

The Wonderful, wonderful David Yeadon

Eric and I tied the knot this past weekend, which was so magical in and of itself... we keep looking down at our left ring fingers in wonderment, then we hold our hand up to the other's face and say, "Ha! Married!"

I was pulling myself from my week of dreaminess thinking that things could not possibly get any better, when I received this note from author David Yeadon about Faery Tale. Named by the Bloomsbury Review as "One of our best travel writers," he is an award winning writer and photographer who has written many, many wild, beautiful, and powerful books about being a traveler in the world, about living and observing. I had fallen in love with his writing when I read AT THE EDGE OF IRELAND, which chronicled a year he spent living on Ireland's Beara Peninsula, and I have since gone back to dip into his backlist, as quickly as I can get my hands on them. I so badly wanted him to read my memoir, and at the same time I thought, "There is no way in hell that David Yeadon is going to want to read a book about faeries." But he read it. And he understood it and me inherently -- it's not just a book about faeries. It's a book about life.

I was bowled over by his note -- instead of writing an obligatory few sentences, he wrote me a commentary. If you're interested to read it, I've posted it below.

FAERY TALE by Signe Pike — A commentary by David Yeadon

I really didn’t want to be entranced. I didn’t want to be enticed into yet another world of strange fantasy-beings. But with Signe Pike’s ‘Faery Tale’—I was. Honestly.
I resisted of course but then found myself being bewitched both by Pike’s silken, sensitive prose and the encouraging realization that she once shared my dismissive skepticism. She admits in numerous situations that despite her deep desire to discover the faery world, her brain “began the process of doing what it does best—denying.”

So I let down my guard and allowed her charming tales of mystical experiences in other-worldly places buoy me along on delightfully adventurous journeys with a host of colorful characters (real folk and fairies). She certainly chose—or was led to—some of the Celtic world’s most mystical places including England’s Glastonbury (Avalon), the Isle of Man, the wild western region of Ireland, the Isle of Skye in the Scottish highlands, and the unique faery-filled community of Findhorn. And, in all her journeys, her own emerging enlightenment engendered far deeper relationships with her sister, her friends, and her late father.

Pike’s open-eyed explorations and deliberate vulnerability remind me of my own years of zany wanderings and adventure travel book writing when, from time to time, I wondered if I was being guided by invisible presences and forces. Certainly, in the numerous instances of ‘near death’ events, I was convinced that my mortality was being protected by much more than pure luck. Faeries? Maybe. There are so many words to describe such secretive entitities. The key to allowing them into our own world is summed up succinctly by Pike—“I refused to give up hope…all I had to do was believe.”

So thank you Signe Pike for making us all more aware of the hidden dimensions of our earthly existence—for ‘helping people believe in magic again”—and for showing us how such spirit world magic can transform the perceptions of our own lives.
-- David Yeadon