Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam /
March 14, 2018
Sleeping Beauty’s Daughter

About The Author

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam

Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam’s fiction and poetry has appeared in over 40 magazines and anthologies such as Hobart, Lightspeed, and Monster Verse (Everyman’s Library). She’s been a finalist for the Nebula Awards and Selected Shorts’ Stella Kupferberg Memorial Short Story Award. Her collaborative fiction-jazz album Strange Monsters was released in 2015. She created and coordinates the annual Art & Words Collaborative Show in Fort Wort, Texas. Visit her on Twitter @BonnieJoStuffle or at

I wrote this story after a trip to visit my ailing aunt Linda. Linda and her grown daughter had camped out together for weeks in bed. Fairy tales allow one to make metaphor of the world. My aunt was a source of my childhood magic. The failing health of Sleeping Beauty has stolen magic from her daughter’s world. When the thing we fear finally happens, we experience profound sadness—my aunt’s death was devastating—but we’re also faced with guilty relief. We can navigate grief in a way we cannot navigate the waiting. We can navigate a story in a way we cannot navigate reality.