Fine-tuning

On the step outside the garden door,  an ant follows silver tracks left by a snail on paving stones. The frantic pace of the ant exaggerates the puzzle of random trails, crossing back and forth, up and down.

The snail may have had a clear idea of where he was going when he started, but the tell-tale signs of his meanderings show clearly in morning sunlight. After moving along in a reasonably straight course, he made a sharp turn to the right, oozing along for a short distance. Heading off at a tangent once again, he returned to the original westerly route for an equally short journey. Veering sharply to the left, and possibly finding the view there unappealing, he was almost back on track, but round in dizzy circles he wandered, muddling along in a tangle until finally, he reached the edge of the step. With all kinds of vegetation almost within reach, it is not clear which way he went. A snail is a snail after all.

 

Snail, you are slow, your wanderings are a jumble.

Compared to what, said the snail.

Compared to my speed and efficiency, said the ant.

I am not in a hurry, said the snail, besides, I rather enjoy going around in circles, to see again what I might have missed.

It wouldn’t suit me, said the ant. I’m in the business of time and motion, and time waits for no ant.

Then why do you follow my trail. Said the snail.

I investigate everything, said the ant. No stone unturned, that’s my motto.

You are indeed industrious, said the snail. Excuse me while I take a nap.

 

After I had written the above, a few days ago, I had in mind a simple drawing of mine, scribbled a few months ago, that would suit the short description. I looked in my art bags, and boxes, and folders. Searched, and searched, but the scribble would not come to light.

Today, I read a fellow blogger’s account of why he doesn’t add illustrations to his writings. A blog purely for writing. Admirable.

Putting aside my search for the elusive scribble, I have done the same with this post. A lesson learned, with the help of another human being, an ant and a snail.

(But I will find that scribble, and possibly attach it to another post.)

 

About maskednative

I live in Ireland, in an extended cottage overlooking Waterford Estuary, privvy to constant changes of light on water, colour and movement, tides and people. I am anglo-Irish and although my initial intention was to live here for a year and a day, I am still here, a blow-in to these shores for the past fifteen years. There have been countless times when I wanted to run back to England with homesickness and relief, but for one reason or another, so far, it has not been possible. I surrender, the soul of Ireland has captured me, allowed a glimpse of the world behind the mask of everyday experiences, bringing forth a mixture of words and pictures from an ordinary everyday life, filled with ordinary everydayness that I offer as a celebration, to the creator of this truly wonderful planet.
This entry was posted in Life, Love and the Universe and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Fine-tuning

  1. Tom says:

    To me, just the first two lines of your poem have a surplus of meaning. That willingness to comment, critique, judge, pigeon-hole, when we don’t have a clue as to the existential reality of the other.

    Great post!

    Like

  2. yes, those meanderings…i find them enlightening…

    Like

  3. j.h. white says:

    Some days an ant
    Some days a snail….
    the trick for me
    is to know which day it is … great post

    Like

  4. maskednative says:

    Thank you j.h. I’m very grateful for your comments. When the day flows without too much trying, maybe those are the days when we are following the right trail, whether an ant or a snail.

    Like

  5. Wonderful story. And I like pictures, drawings and scribbles:)

    Like

    • maskednative says:

      Thank you for your comment, I’m very happy to know that you enjoyed the story. For me, writing is painting with words,finding the best descriptive word(s),is always worth the effort, whether we succeed or not.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s