Monday, May 13, 2013

Considering the Cow

“The cattle crouched round them in soft shadowy clumps, placidly munching, and dreaming with wide-open eyes.”—Hope Mirrlees, Lud-in-the-Mist 
Today I am considering the cow.
Feeling pastoral and slow, ruminative.
Feeling like nothing more than standing in a grassy meadow somewhere with a lot of shade, chewing it over.
And chewing.
Chewing and eschewing.

Cows have that certain indefinably amiable air, which can sometimes seem droll.
“The cow is of the bovine ilk; one end is moo, the other milk.”  
—Ogden Nash 
“But when I say 'cow', don’t go running away with the idea of some decent, self-respecting cudster such as you may observe loading grass into itself in the nearest meadow.” 
—P.G. Wodehouse, The Code of the Woosters

Yet even in the dreamiest meadow, the balmiest barnyard, there are cautions to be mulled. 
“Cease, cows, life is short.”
 Gabriel Garcia Márquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude

images:  Pierre Bonnard, The Barn (Cow in the Stable), 1912
Christie B. Cochrell, Hadrian’s Wall with Cow, Early British Cow

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