The Moomins and first butterfly

Sue Vincent with a lovely post about Moomins, springtime and the fact that things are often more than they seem…

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

moomintroll and the snork maiden by tove jansson

The morning sun brought the first butterfly of spring. It was a deep yellow… almost golden… and that thought took me straight back to childhood and Moomin Valley, for…

“…as everyone knows, if the first butterfly you see is yellow the summer will be a happy one. If it is white then you will just have a quiet summer. Black and brown butterflies should never be talked about – they are much too sad.” Tove Jannson, ‘Finn Family Moomintroll’.

I could even ‘see’ the old picture of Moomintroll and the Snork Maiden, sailing on clouds and, perhaps because of the underlying chill in the air, thought of the poor old Groke, a creature of darkness and ice whose passage froze the ground beneath her. I remembered another of Jansson’s illustrations; always misunderstood and inspiring fear, the Groke was chased away whenever she appeared, as unwanted as winter.

The Groke by Tove Jansson

Yet for all…

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5 thoughts on “The Moomins and first butterfly

  1. I’ve not heard of this book. The names (Moomintroll, Snorkmaiden, Groke) are fantastical, and the illustrations just gorgeous! My son wrote a novel a few years’ ago, ‘Two Dogs and a City of Cats’, and came up with glorious names for his characters, like ‘Snickelfrod’ and ‘Selt’. I just love names like that!

    1. Oh Louise, please see if you can find a copy of one of the Moomin books – they are the most charming read, both for adults and children. Moomins are quite big over here, you can get all sorts of memorabilia – I had the books as a child and have passed them on to my daughter because they are so wonderful.

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