Maggie Wright

Puff, the Magic Dragon

Peter, Paul, & Mary’s song, “Puff, the Magic Dragon,” has always touched my heart.  It was a lyrical tale of what happens… of  losing those childhood magical things… when we grow up.  Little Jackie Paper grew up and Puff, his abandoned “magical dragon,” died.  

                              “His head was bent in sorrow, green scales fell like rain,
                        Puff no longer went to play along the cherry lane.
                        Without his life-long friend, puff could not be brave,
                        So puff that mighty dragon sadly slipped into his cave.”

Every time that I hear this song, I think back to my childhood when everything was magical. When we were left to our own creative devices called imagination. 

As a child, I loved pansies because I could see their faces and I pretended they were talking to me.  While playing in my bedroom, I lined them up in little Dixie cup that were filled with water, placed them right beside my doll babies, and then I pretended that I was teaching all of them. Don’t remember what I was teaching, but I do remember grading their papers.

My home in North Carolina was located by a golf course and on one of the holes, there was a secret little woods area where lots of us would go to play.  There was a little creek with long vines that swung back and forth across the creek. Some of us loved looking for frogs, while others loved to swing back and forth across the creek, just like Tarzan. One day, I rubbed poison ivy all over my arms and face.  Oh my, was I sorry!      

This was a special time in the 1950s and 60s, when we could actually play outside at night. I remember the crisp night air in the late springtime and the smell of being dirty and sweaty after playing outdoors. It was a period of innocence before the tumultuous 1960s changed our lives and our society. 

I’m one of the “earlier” Boomers, by birthright, and much of my teenage and college years were spent during the explosive 60s and early 70s.  At that time, there was a bunch of us kids-at-heart that believed we could change the world for the better.  Many things have changed, some for the better, and many not. 

But the purpose of this BLOG is to revisit the magic of childhood and of our everyday lives, and to bring it back.  This is what will ground us as we embark upon the cross currents and muddied waters of the next decades. 

Welcome. Come join my journey … what are your memories from childhood?  Let’s tap into that magical pool of imagination.

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8 Responses to Puff, the Magic Dragon

  1. Lynda Santarsiero says:

    My mom was in a nursing home for approximately six years and recently passed away. When she was in the nursing home, due to her dimentia, it was difficult, if not impossible, to communicate with her. However, I would bring my portable Sirius radio with me and play music for her, which had a very calming effect on her. At other times when they had sing-alongs there, and they sang songs from her generation, she DID remember the words and sang along with the others. For some reason the song that always makes me think of my mom is “Thanks for the Memories”, from the Bob Hope show. I heard that song a lot when I was a kid, as my mom usually had the radio on when she did her chores at home. So ironic!

  2. merlin says:

    Hi Lynda,

    Beautiful story. Check this out:


  3. CC says:

    Lovely story Maggie. I was always a sensitive one & I welled up when I read the lines above from Puff. I loved that story but I really grieved (apparently still) when I remember that. I blocked that out bcz I knew I liked that story except it was traumatically sad 4 me but I couldn’t remember y…now i do.

    Anyway loved your story about teaching your pansies. I taught all of my baby dolls & lines rocks in clear plastic cups on my window sill, since wet rocks were SHINY rocks!

  4. merlin says:

    That’s cool. It is wonderful to have the opportunity as a child to be able to develop that imagination!

  5. Dotty Hart ( Arrow & Zachary ) mom says:

    Beautiful Maggie, I love your work !!!!!
    Hugs and Love

    • Maggie says:

      Thanks, Dotty! I just listened to “Thanks for the Memories” again. The 50/60s were very different times. It was wonderful to grow up then. I’m SO glad that we had the chance for that kind of childhood!

  6. Cindy says:


    Thanks for the reminder to bring magic back into life..especially at this age..I have been thinking about the topic a lot lately..whats missing from my life is more music and dancing…those are the things that truly move the spirit…

    We tend to move and exercise in such a two dimensional world in this country ..look at any machines at your local gym, or notice what you do on the treadmill ..forward, and back..Well that doesn’t move your spirit or enhance your brain, but they have done studies and what does help keep you coordinated and your brain working are complex motions…and guess what ..dancing is one of the best things for antiaging..

    A bit off topic perhaps, but whether it will be listening or moving to the groove, Im going to try to get a little more of this magic into my life!

    And the beat goes on….

  7. merlin says:

    Hi Cindy,

    You mean like this link that you sent me? Here it is!

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