5/7/2014 Listening Lounge

 

The Mystery of Opal Whiteley by Dmae Roberts and Dorthy Velasco

Opal Whiteley was a naturist, writer, and dreamer who lived in a fantasy world of kindness and magical creatures in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon. At age six, writing with colored pencils on scraps of butcher paper, she began a secret diary about her time in the woods, talking with the wind, and her love of natureOpal was long considered by her family as an odd child; what they didn't know was that Opal was schizophrenic. The illness seemed to manifest itself in a heightened sense of awareness of the sights and sounds around her. Her heightened sensibilities and her genius for expressing herself combined to create the most fascinating diary ever written. It became wildly popular -- but due to it's sophistication was later condemned as a hoax. The controversy took a toll on Opal and eventually led to a further decline in her mental health.
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Air Date: 
May 7, 2014

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