Thank you to Reading to the Core for hosting this week.
Is there any poem more otherworldly than Jabberwocky? In Lewis Carroll’s Through The Looking-Glass, Alice discovers a book written “in some language I don’t know”, realises it is a Looking-glass book, and with a glass (mirror) she reads this:
JABBERWOCKY ’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves Did gyre and gimble in the wabe: All mimsy were the borogoves, And the mome raths outgrabe. “Beware the Jabberwock, my son! The jaws that bite, the claws that catch! Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun The frumious Bandersnatch!” He took his vorpal sword in hand: Long time the manxome foe he sought— So rested he by the Tumtum tree, And stood awhile in thought. And, as in uffish thought he stood, The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame, Came whiffling through the tulgey wood, And burbled as it came! One, two! One, two! And through and through The vorpal blade went snicker-snack! He left it dead, and with its head He went galumphing back. “And hast thou slain the Jabberwock? Come to my arms, my beamish boy! O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!” He chortled in his joy. ’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves Did gyre and gimble in the wabe: All mimsy were the borogoves, And the mome raths outgrabe.
What does it all mean? There’s the educated answer, and then there is Humpty Dumpty’s answer. Or you might prefer, as I do, Chris Riddell’s visual interpretation, found in his book Poems To Live Your Life By.
Poems To Live Your Life By
Chosen and Illustrated by: Chris Riddell
Published by: Macmillan
ISBN 13: 9781509814374