How would you be? one hot day at the zoo

Crowds were thin at Australia Zoo on one of the hottest days this summer. My friend and I wandered the site, keeping to the shade when we could, then out in the open, forgetting the time, in awe, marvelling at the uniqueness of those beautiful creatures.

I couldn’t help thinking they might be lonely in their enclosures, even if there were two or three of them there … with all this strange country around them.  I couldn’t help imagining how I would feel if I was them? Surely they would miss their herd?

How would you be? DSCF1245Perhaps … as coy as a young giraffe …     [ A herd of giraffes]

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… as stoic as a dusty rhinoceros …            [A crash of rhinoceroses]

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… as eager as a captive wedge-tail …        [A convocation of eagles]

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 … as patient as a basking alligator …     [A congregation of alligators]

DSCF1351… as content as a well-fed cheetah …        [A coalition of cheetahs]

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… or as enthusiastic as a litter of hungry piglets?

How about

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… as gregarious as a grazing zebra …                      [ A zeal of zebras]

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 … as flamboyant as a cooling cassowary …           [ A dash of cassowaries]

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…. or just as bored as a magnificent tiger?                  [An ambush of tigers]

All text and photos by Meg

Story Twigs …! by Meg Philp is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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Rain Glad

In such a way did the black giant of Tarn Wethelan  find release, and the grim lady of the moor win the White Hawk: and of her he was as glad as grass would be of rain.

A quote from “Tarn Wethlan” in Alan Garner’s Collected Folktales, published in 2010.

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        (Read Neil Gaiman’s review at http://www.theguardian.com/books/2011/dec/14/collected-folk-tales-garner-review)

I started this post with the last line of Garner’s version of the Arthurian legend about the marriage of Sir Gawaine and the Lady Ragnal, a tale I tell myself. I am intrigued by this author’s point of view. I have always loved Garner’s voice; this turn of phraseand of her he was as glad as grass is of rain… made me wonder about rain, how weather effects us all, and why I don’t mention it much in my storytelling …

This legend is set on St Stephen’s-tide, the day after Christmas. I imagined the December weather In Northumberland. Hard frost, hills blanketed in snow, biting wind, icicles on walls,horses snorting and steaming in the cold … all this seems such a dream in the Tropics.  Here, on Boxing Day,  the grass in my yard was parched. It was 40C and baking hot and we were desperate for rain.

…and of her he was as glad as grass is of rain… 

I kept a weather eye open as I worked steadily moving on from room to room inside the house, sweat dripping from me, The crack of a lightning bolt came as a surprise. I looked out,

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The weather had turned, the heavens finally opened with a tropical storm full of thunder, flashes of light, cracking close by and the glorious, warm, drenching rain.

What a relief when it rains!

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Later, as I wandered in the garden, I wondered  … was she as sweet on him as honeysuckle after rain?

How glad is grass, really, after rain?

Did she luxuriate in the sun and go wild?

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What’s left behind after rain? What pondering, playful drops?

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Here’s to rain! Happy New Year!  Health, Joy and enough Rain to keep you going and growing!

 

Stories Twigs … by Meg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.