Words by Isabel-Sofia Pias Diaz
Artwork by Claudia Smith (@claudiart_photo)
When I think of apocalyptic environments, strangely enough I don’t wander to nuclear disasters or zombie outbreaks but Lewis Carol’s Alice and Wonderland. Wonderland has always had this purgatorial element to it; a strange gleam that catches your peripheral vision, not long enough to fully see it, but long enough to haunt your thoughts. Wonderland. That whisper that lingers in the back of your mind; the scratch lost in the back of your throat; the place that never lets you go.
From the novel to the many movie and story adaptations, it is a place that retains this gravitating pull, a place to blur the line between reality and fantasy. A place that might as well be apocalyptic in its own right.
In some ways, Wonderland’s confusing reality of continuous ironies, hazy memories and endless contradictions feels more like the lives we live today. The poem I’ve written to express this is called: Alice.
Wish I was Alice
Stumbling on sugarplum planes
Smirking felines, floating teacups
Fighting crazed candy canes
Wish I was Alice
Playing in endless mazes
Singing flowers, growing powers
Sneezing on dusty daises
Imagine being Alice
Helping rushed rabbits, learning weird habits
Finding strange places, seeing strange faces
Dodging glowing glasses, always skipping classes
Climbing red mountains, drinking pink fountains
That’s me, that’s Alice.
Waits all alone, deeply missing home
Feeling hopeless, lying lifeless
Lost in wonderland, without a plan.
Sleeps rough, nightmares for months
Mind half crazy, memory hazy
Trapped in wonderland, no helping hand
No more tricks, no more wits
Just one empty sleeve, she will never leave.
Since it’s not wonderland
without our Alice.