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WeepingWillow

The tall Weeping Willow encountered by King Graham and Cedric in Serenia. Willow is actually the Princess Alicia who was visiting Serenia with her fiance, Prince Herbert.

BackgroundEdit

Near the Dark Forest of Serenia, Graham discovered a graceful weeping willow tree. A harp was cradled in its branches, and at its base was a small pond formed by the tree's tears. The tree was really a princess named Alicia who had been transformed into a willow by a jealous witch who had stolen her heart. In this light, it is somewhat understandable why Alicia was weeping.[1]

Willow's only solace was her mahogany harp, which played sweet music that moved her to weep tears into a pool around her base. Her song was:

How will I find this heart of mine, Taken from me for some time? Here I stand near my pool of tears. Here I'll stay throughout thy years.

Graham was able to find Alicia's heart and return it to her. At once she returned to her womanly form and was soon reunited with Prince Herbert. The lovers went off together, never to be seen by Graham again. Presumably they are living happily ever after.

For his efforts, Graham got Alicia's harp, which later helped him out of a couple of tight situations, but not even a "Thank you!" from the happy couple. Isn't young love wonderful?[2]

Weeping willows are also a species of tree found in the Land of Oz, they are cousins to the willows who bother people by laughing at them.[3] The common weeping willow tree originally originated from China.[4] Those trees have the same sort of sorrowful significance there, and in Japan, as do willows of western culture.

Behind the scenesEdit

There are a number of inspirations to this story, including possible Oz weeping willow trees, and the Chinese weeping willow myths.

The willow tree, with its drooping branches, has traditionally symbolized grief, melancholy, and suffering. It was once customary for a woman who had been jilted by a lover, or who had lost one, to wear a garland of willow leaves or flowers. The Jews in captivity in Babylon hung harps on the branches of willow trees in sorrow over their exile. The willow can also represent death. Orpheus carried a willow branch with him into the underworld, the land of the dead, and Circe hung corpses in a willow grove.

However, the willow trees of European tradition are not the same as the weeping willow. The weeping willow tree actually comes from China. Those trees though have the same sort of sorrowful significance there, and in Japan, as do willows of western culture.[5] The weeping willow (Salix × sepulcralis), is actually a hybrid of Peking willow (Salix babylonica) from China and white willow (Salix alba) from Europe.

Another story maybe the Old Woman in the Woods which includes a prince turned into a tree, and the tree having a locked door in it but holding food in it. The stolen heart maybe inspired by a number of tales, one example being The Heart of Princess Joan.

An NPC encountered in KQ V, it is a human that was turned into an ent. Talking to Cedric will initiate her song.

The Willow was voiced by Diana Wilson. The Singing Willow Tree was voiced by Debbie Seibert.

In the KQ5 Hintbook this character is listed as the 'WEEPING WILLOW TREE'.

The pool of tears is actually a location in Wonderland.

The weeping willow is as close the series has had to a dryad (not counting the ents and other tree spirits) as of yet.

ReferencesEdit

  1. KQC, 2nd Edition, 521
  2. KQC2E, 521-522
  3. KQC2E, 519
  4. KQC2E, pg
  5. KQC, 2nd Edition, 522

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