Wednesday, April 29, 2009

wool, lady's smock, animate

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Portrait of a sheep. I have always liked the knowing expression round the mouths of these animals. I wonder what they know.

The area of the Grove, which they left unmowed for the first time last year, has again been spared the whirring blades. The restraint is already showing dividends. Today I find, among the usual dandelions and daisies, several of those pretty Spring flowers called lady's smock or cuckoo flower. Four mauve petals pale and lightly veined.

My attention is caught by a black drinking straw, angled three quarters of the way up with a flexible corrugated section like the links between railway carriages. It stands in an empty tumbler and, its bent section leaning over like a beak, swings round in the wind. It is always fascinating when an inanimate object appears to become animate as a result of such natural impulses. And it is now. The beak swings round and nuzzles for a moment the rim of a neighbouring glass. Then moves on round the rim of its own glass shaking and nodding as though in conversation.

7 comments:

Zhoen said...

There's a sheep theme going round.

http://relativelyretiring.blogspot.com/2009/04/young-white-and-talented.html

Plutarch said...

Seems there is. Thanks for the link. Those sheep have the same superior, slightly condescding expression.

Barrett Bonden said...

That black straw with the flexible corrugated section could also have evoked professional memories. Although such straws are now widely available I suspect they originated from the need to provide children (sitting at an adult table) with a lower, less awkward sucking point. A perfect example of ergonomics, the study of man in relation to his workplace. On your behalf I attended a conference on ergonomics and was so charmed by the accidentals thereof I wrote a leader on the subject. Which produced a rueful acknowledgement from the chief ergonomist. The post covering this event is presently fermenting.

herhimnbryn said...

Z. beat me to it!

Plutarch said...

BB. I remember the ergonomics intervention. It was interesting then as it is now. I look forward to your post. Will it be in verse?

Rashmi said...

Are you going to Clare's party? I hope you are :-)

Plutarch said...

Rashmi: I hope to! I suppose it is rather too far for you.