Anne McCaffrey’s Dragons – Charlotte Moore


“Anne McCaffrey was an animal lover. So are most of her fans. So am I. And while most humans are driven by a basic biological imperative to communicate (barring Fox News pundits and people who don’t use their turn signals and anyone from South Carolina), animal lovers are that much more gratified by connecting to a member of another species. We see much of ourselves in these creatures so unlike us – and many of them seem intrigued by us in turn. But while their intentions are clear, animals remain largely mute. We know that they dream, but not of what. We wonder what they would say if they could speak.
Anne’s dragons exemplify the essential human longing for connection to the other. On Pern, dragons have wills, minds, and desires of their own. They fear and love and lust and hate. They are id and ego both; they are sweet children and impassioned soldiers by turns. And yet, one’s dragon is a reflection of the best in one’s self; they are an ever-present affirmation, a reminder to be just and to strive. Unconstrained by either space or time, a Pernese dragon is free to see the world as a place of boundless opportunity: all is achievable but that which, affronting the natural order, must not be achieved. I imagine they’d be fond of Yoda’s axiom “Try not. Do, or do not! There is no try.” Anne McCaffrey may have shunned organized religion, but her dragons were Buddhists, every last one.
Drawing them, reading about them, thinking about them, soothes and settles me like little else. It’s not simply the idea of enduring companionship that attracts me, though of course that’s a huge part of the appeal. It’s the idea of dragon as peacemaker: a serene, graceful mind whose single greatest instinct is to protect and sustain. In my dreams, they smell of warm earth, of sunshine. In flight together, my dragon and I travel beyond reach, beyond yesterday. We live for now, and we are now, and now is all.” ~ Charlotte Moore

Ref: pp.234-235 Charlotte Moore ‘The Twithead with the Dragon Tattoo’ pp.230-245 Ed. Todd McCaffrey, with Leah Wilson (2013) Dragonwriter: A tribute to Anne McCaffrey and Pern. Smart Pop, Dallas, Texas


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