Scarecrow Magic: 05/24/17
Scarecrow Magic by Ed Masessa is a picture book I read for the crossing the cornfield category of my road narrative project. This is a story of a scarecrow who calls all his friends to have a late night party,
The cornfield as I've mentioned before is a threshold between worlds. It can ben a barrier between urban and rural. It can be a barrier between the real and the unreal — or one dimension and another. It can also be a barrier between the land of the living and the land of the dead.
It is the last aspect that Scarecrow Magic covers. The friends that the scarecrow calls to his party are shown coming out of the ground, materializing from the shadowy edges of things. They are the literal and figurative things that go bump in the night. Their guide and host from the underworld, is this magic scarecrow.
A working theory on why the cornfield is a threshold to the underworld is that cornfields are traditionally fertilized with bonemeal. The traditional cornfield is a literal graveyard. Imagine now if that field were also haunted by the souls of those who had helped the corn thrive?
While the cornfield as portal to the underworld — or as source of zombies or other undead monsters — shows up most frequently in horror, Scarecrow Magic is not. It's more of a lighthearted urban fantasy — in that the revelers who come out at night don't bother the living on the farm and they clean up after themselves before dawn. The message here is one that there's always that aspect of the unknown and much of the time, the unknown is perfectly harmless.