Beetles

Do you have your own special event (like Kat and Paul’s Goose roasting) that sings in your mind as one of the most memorable experiences in your life? Tell us about it.

The important thing about Kat and Paul’s goose roasting is not the action itself, but rather the emotion and deep meaning behind it. An almost mundane activity being carried out in the midst of war not only had a binding effect on the solidiers, but taught them something about the world. The memorable experience that I am about to explain had a similar effect in my life as although it may seem incredibly insignificant to any reader, it is an event that has remained ingrained in my memory for almost fifteen years…

As a child, I was an incredibly nature-loving being; I collected snails as “pets”, spent all of my time outside, and went out of my way to protect small creatures. One windy afternoon, when I was about five years old,a small green bug (most likely a christmas beetle, though my memories fail me) happened to arrive on my verandah of all places. To the aforementioned “nature-loving being” that my five-year-old self was, befriending this beetle was ofcourse the most sensible thing to do. I sat for what must have been hours on my sister’s skateboard watching the beetle, playing with it (also known as letting it crawl over my fingers), and trying to feed it cake; all the while, strong winds blowing around me. In my childlike mind, the bug was having fun too, enjoying my company and loving the cake; which, in hindsight, it most definitely was not eating. For me this was not just a bug, but a friend; my mum was too busy to play and my older sister was at school already- this bug was just as good company as any person could be to me and maybe even better in some ways. I wanted to share the news of my newfound friend with my mum who was folding clothes inside so I got off the skateboard and moved towards the door. The wind kept blowing. In a cruel twist of fate, this particular gust of wind was enough to turn the wheels of the skateboard I had previously been sitting on and as it rolled, the life was squeezed out of my beetle. My friend. Uneaten cake crumbs still lying there, the deathbed of a creature who had been such a comfort to a child. Tears flooded from my eyes not only when it happened, but many more times afterwards as I felt that it was my fault the skateboard had taken the life of an innocent beetle. To this very day, the death of that particular beetle still upsets me though I’m sure I have killed many since then with no remorse.

While the death of a beetle does not change the world, that memory has stayed with me for some unexplainable reason. Maybe because it was my first experience of something I cared about dying or because of the knowledge about how quickly things an be turned upside down. How short life is. Whatever the reason, this tiny experience made a huge impact on my world and the way that I viewed it making this event special not through what happened, but through what it meant.

Beetle2_86561

Probably a distant relative of the beetle I befriended. (southcoasyherald.co.za)

Advertisements

A Modern War Poem

Take the first line of any one of the poets studied this week, and in the style of that poet, compose your own poem about the horror of wars as you might imagine

For my creative piece this week, I decided to take the first line of Wilfred Owen’s “Anthem for Doomed Youth” and write my own poem. I thought that rather than writing a WW1 war poem, I would subvert the line and use it to write about a “war” in our world today; this “war” being Australia versus refugees that are rejected and vilified.

Anthem for Asylum Seekers

What passing bells for these who die as cattle?
-Only isolation and being unwanted.
Enduring endless injustice and an unfair battle
For those who carry on, exhausted.
No memorials of their hardships; no relent
Nor a voice of reason resounding.
Instead excuses we, ourselves, invent-
Prejudice, racism and fear abounding.
Why is their humanity replaced with alienation?
The lives left at home and lost in “sanctuary”-
Australia, with false pride in an egalitarian nation
Refuses the outcasts when help is necessary.
Through cries of help and tragic goodbyes,
The world turn away with covered ears and closed eyes.

Peer Review 1

Hi Victoria!
First of all, I love the layout of your blog, it really adds something to the words you are writing. I really enjoyed your analysis of the various purposes for which people create art and the fact that sometimes it can be used to manipulate or make a person think a particular way. When it comes to the purpose that Hopkins addresses in “God’s Grandeur”, I do not think it is just another purpose to add to the list. I think that it is quite possibly fundamental to art itself as if a piece can not make one stop and think, is it really effective in achieving any one of its purposes? Let me know what you think about this!

Keep up the great work 🙂

Posted to: https://vbravosite.wordpress.com

The Present

To “….compel men entranced by the sight of distant goals to glance for a moment at the surrounding vision of form and colour, of sunshine and shadows; to make them pause for a look , for a sigh, for a smile…” Do you think this is a noble aim for any kind of artist (novelist, poet, musician, painter)?  Discuss in a short paragraph.

Today, society is often so concerned about the future that they find an inability to appreciate the small joys in the world and as a result, miss out on truly living. An artist who strives to “make them pause for a look, for a sigh, for a smile”, in many ways is aiming to bring life to the almost lifeless haze that people live in what “entranced by the sight of distant goals.” These goals, whether they be monetary, material or social prevent society from reflecting upon their emotions and the state of the world around them. Through “form and colour…sunshine and shadows”, an author may create such emotion and reflections about the present that otherwise would be missed in such busy lives that we all strive to keep up with. Due to this, it could be argued that the communication of emotion and the ability to recreate these within the audience is the most vital part of any art form because of the way it gets an audience to stop, feel, and reflect- actions very rarely carried out due to these “distant goals” that we set for ourselves. By communicating the importance of this to the audience, an artist helps them to recognise what matters in the present; the envirnoment and emotions created through this. This pursuit to compel the audience to address the present is therefore a noble andeven admirable aim as it allows the audience to feel and grow within the present which then improves this distant future we are so concerned with.