Archive for the ‘All creatures’ Category
Long ago Once-ler chances upon a place filled with wondrous Truffula Trees, Swomee-Swans, Brown Bar-ba-loots, and Humming-Fishes. Bewitched by the beauty of the Truffula Tree tufts, he greedily chops them down to produce and mass-market Thneeds. (“It’s a shirt. It’s a sock. It’s a glove. It’s a hat.”) As the trees swiftly disappear and the denizens leave for greener pastures, the fuzzy yellow Lorax (who speaks for the trees “for the trees have no tongues”) repeatedly warns the Once-ler, but his words of wisdom are for naught. Finally the Lorax extricates himself from the scorched earth (by the seat of his own furry pants), leaving only a rock engraved “UNLESS.” Thus, with his own colorful version of a compelling morality play, Dr. Seuss teaches readers not to fool with Mother Nature. But as you might expect from Seuss, all hope is not lost-the Once-ler has saved a single Truffula Tree seed! Our fate now rests in the hands of a caring child, who becomes our last chance for a clean, green future.
This is the story of a boy. He is called Mick by his father, Tom, and Storm Boy by the Aboriginal loner Fingerbone he befriends. This boy is growing up in an isolated corrugated iron shed next to a wildlife sanctuary. He lives with his father, who supports them by fishing alone. He is not attending school; he is illiterate and ignorant, and he doesn’t know any better. But he seems content with his life, and a little less curious about the outside world than one might expect. There’s a telling moment when he brings home a radio that washed up on the beach (he found it while looking for driftwood to burn). His father tells him to throw it away, because if he listens to it, he’ll hear advertisements and want things he can’t have.
There are intrusions on their life. A mob of idiot bird shooters kill a number of birds before they are scared off by Fingerbone (he shoots near them). Amongst the dead are some pelicans whose chicks are still in the nest. The boy brings them home to care for. His father isn’t keen, but permits it. Three pelicans become a lot to feed when they reach maturity, so his father insists on releasing them. Two are never seen again, but one, Mr Percival, keeps coming back.
Another intruder is the new primary school teacher, brought by the park ranger – she is concerned about his education, and pushes hard for him to be sent to school, or at least to do schoolwork by correspondence. She means well, but she is resented by the father – he doesn’t want anything to change in their reclusive life.
At night, Mr Fox steals chickens, ducks, and turkeys from three mean, stinky and wealthy farmers — Boggis, Bunce and Bean — in order to feed his family. The farmers are fed up with this and try everything to kill him. One night they wait outside his foxhole in an attempt to ambush him. When Mr Fox emerges from his home, they fire at him but only succeed in blowing off his tail.
Determined to catch him, the farmers use spades and shovels to dig their way into the foxes’ home, but Mr and Mrs Fox and their four children dig a tunnel deeper into the ground and manage to escape. The farmers even resort to using bulldozers in order to dig deeper into the ground, but to no avail.
The three men therefore decide to play a waiting game, keeping watch on the entrance to the tunnel with shotguns at the ready, while their men patrol the area to make sure the foxes don’t escape.