toy n joy

Toy n Joy

This is one of those delightful, slightly macabre, images you can chance upon occasionally. I snapped it during my last trip to London.

I often think dolls are rather grotesque, with their fake smiles and staring eyes. Especially when they are stripped down so their human mockery is made evident. This jumble contains potential winners of a Creepy Doll pageant.

Childhood is a funny period in your life. So many things you love can be simultaneously frightening in different circumstances: like when you’re tucked up in bed and the teddy bear eyes glint in the glimmer of the hall light, and the distant unintelligible murmur of your parents’ voices offers bursts of emotional insight.

Then, unexpressed queasy fears, battened down during the day, spark into nervous life. Shadows move, strange voices whisper and pulling the covers over your eyes would only make it worse.

Instead, you watch, hyper-vigilant for every shift in air current and flicker of movement, too proud to cry out or interrupt the evening life of your parents, until exhaustion sweeps you to slumber.

And sometimes, even in your dreams, the toys are waiting for you.