Playing the Queen of Hearts |

Playing the Queen of Hearts

April E. Clark
Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
April in Glenwood

If someone were to tell me I live in a fantasy world, I might take that as a compliment.

There is a lot of magic in my life.

I was talking with a friend the other day about coincidences and how life comes full circle when we least expect it. Lately there have been aspects of my life that have oddly fallen into place and it just feels right. It’s as if a puppeteer is standing above me, controlling my marionette strings to help me do what I was put on this Earth to do.

That unfortunately includes keeping up with laundry.

If I am a human version of a marionette, I’ve apparently been plopped down into a dream world of imagination and self-expression that I hadn’t previously experienced. That isn’t always easy to find. I pretty much stumbled upon it.

It’s a lot like Alice falling down the rabbit hole.

The people I’ve met and the new friends I’ve been making this year are certainly a creative lot. They sing, dance, sew, take photographs, model, write, paint, play guitar, and a host of other talents that make me appreciate the arts even more.

There isn’t an idea that’s silly or stupid. If there’s passion behind it, a dream can easily become a reality.

Ironically, reality TV is living proof of that.

Just this weekend I attended a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, an Alice in Wonderland-themed fundraiser for the Carbondale Sew Op, a local designer collective that has gained momentum since starting earlier this summer. The party was a grand affair with costumes, hot toddies, savory and sweet finger foods, fire spinning, a hilarious photo session, and face painting, of course.

It’s not a party in Carbondale unless Amber Sparkles is painting a face.

I went the Queen of Hearts route after experiencing an interesting rodeo cowboy encounter the week prior. Before the tea party, my friend Mark reminded me that the Queen of Hearts never cries.

She’s more of a head chopper, really.

That being said, I kind of like this idea of taking on the Queen of Hearts persona full time. I may not go around town screaming, “Off with their heads!” But I could take a Queen of Hearts attitude when it comes to relationships. In games of love and war, the nice ones are usually taken prisoner anyway. Maybe a monarchy is in order.

Bring on the tiaras and croquet.

Of course there’s a fun component to all this creative energy that involves playing dress up, one of my favorite childhood activities. If there’s a costume, I’m in. If there’s an excuse to pretend, I’m definitely in. Not everyone has to play in this world, but I recommend it.

This helps me not take myself too seriously, if that’s even possible. Think of how great actors have it, always smudging the lines of fantasy and reality with the characters they play. I may not be classically trained in theater, but I can pretend with the best of them. That’s not too hard in Carbondale.

A wild imagination is a terrible thing to waste.

As this new phase of my life unfolds, I’m open to anything. In the business world, we call that thinking outside of the box. I’m all for that concept – albeit a bit overused – but I’m also interested in peeking inside the package to see what surprises are in store. Who knows, this virtual box could have more inside than what is outside of it.

And who knows how big the box is? With an open mind and an endless imagination, the box could be big as a house or small as a rabbit hole.

The Queen of Hearts likely knows.

– April E. Clark wishes her Hoosier friend Barry a very happy birthday. April in Glenwood appears every Wednesday. She can be reached at

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