Dear Curator of Nursery Terata –
Since you seem to like this sort of thing, here’s a merry tale of something that made a ghastly impression on my impressionable young mind. Luckily few children are likely to be exposed to this particular bogey by mistake (and hopefully none at all on purpose), but those unlucky few have my deepest sympathies.
When I was about 10, I was surfing the then-available British T.V. channels (all 3 of them) in search of random mid-morning diversion when I happened upon an Open University programme about the history of art just in time to be treated to a clip from LUIS BUNUEL and SALVADOR DALI‘s film UN CHIEN ANDALOU. It was the eye-slashing scene…
Not having a clue where such a thing could possibly have come from (obviously I switched off before anything worse could happen), for about 15 years I honestly thought I’d hallucinated that image until I finally saw the whole film. Beat that for nightmare fodder!
Talking of which, I’m surprised that you don’t seem to be aware of Lucy Lane Clifford‘s “Anyhow Stories,” undoubtedly an all-time pre-school trauma classic which makes “Struwwelpeter” seem almost tame by comparison. To appreciate the full horror of this kiddies’ bedtime favourite of yesteryear to which many, many helpless infants were exposed on purpose, you need to hear it read aloud. Which, happily, you can do HERE.
I particularly recommend “The New Mother,” a story so utterly terrifying that it has been included in horror anthologies for adults! And award yourself a pinch of fairy dust if you can work out the moral. If you ask me, it’s “don’t trust evil mom,” but surely that can’t be right…?
Yours archetypally –
Count Otto Black (deceased)