Night After Night
by Diana Starr Cooper
illustrated by Ivy Starr
Island Press, 1994
Cloth: 978-1-55963-306-2 | eISBN: 978-1-61091-486-4
Library of Congress Classification GV1815.C83 1994
Dewey Decimal Classification 791.3

"Seen from across a field at night, with its swags of white lights scalloped from mast to mast against the sky, it looks like an ocean liner far out on the water. Yet it is still a tent. It appears on Monday, in what was an empty field on Sunday. While it's there, it forms the landscape around it in a new way, transforming its meanings just as horses do when they walk into a pasture. A week later, there's an empty field again. The tent is gone, and so is the little village of trucks and trailers that clustered around it as if it were a castle. Did I dream it?" --from Night After NightNight After Night is an enrapturing meditation on a small, traditional, one-ring circus. Diana Cooper delights us with the realization that circus is more than mere entertainment. It is a splendid classical art form, grounded in venerable skills and traditions, with its deepest sources in the vitality of myth, ritual, fantasy, fear, wonder, laughter, and awe.Throughout the book, Cooper raises important issues such as human/animal communication and coexistence, permutations of fantasy and reality, the beauties of diversity, and notions about what is, and is not natural. Her love of and respect for the culture of circus -- the forms and understandings that enable it to bring joy to all it touches- infuse every page of this literary treasure.

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