……Taking off from the last post of animals in Indian crafts…
After drawing on caves, man also proceeded to record them in literature. Stories woven around animals as in Aesop’s Fables. They also found worthy mention in the Bible. And this continued in modern literature and speech.
I came across this article where the author writes that animals apart from clothing and feeding many of us, they do much—metaphorically speaking—to make our language as colourful as it is. From as mad as a box of frogs to bats in the belfry, and from as proud as a peacock to being up to your armpits in alligators.
Consider the ‘man’s best friend ‘ – the dog – is often a part of our daily conversation. Think about it, you have been ‘working like a dog', 'leading a dog’s life', being 'dog tired', while someone else is the ‘lucky dog’!
And what would we do without the adorable Snoopy, the feline Garfield, the imaginary Hobbes….
Our generation was brought up with serious poems as To a Skylark or The Ode to a Nightingale . So, it was a pleasant change being introduced to Ogden Nash through my daughter’s text book. And his animal kingdom inspired poems are always fun to read.
The wasp and all his numerous family
I look upon as a major calamity.
He throws open his nest with prodigality,
But I distrust his waspitality.
Tell me, O Octopus, I begs
Is those things arms, or is they legs?
I marvel at thee, Octopus;
If I were thou, I'd call me Us.
The cow is of the bovine ilk;
One end is moo, the other, milk.
I leave you with Winston Churchill’s famous quote - A cat looks down upon a man, and a dog looks up to a man, but a pig will look a man in the eye and see his equal.