Sunday, January 02, 2005

Foggy Felines


The fog comes
on little feet

It sits looking
over harbour and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on

- Carl Sandburg (1878-1967) -

I prefer the fog to a clear, crisp day of stinging temperatures and a futile sun but it all looks good from this house. Because we live in a valley, however, fog is something to which I can look forward in the months to come.

I also love the cat metaphor in describing fog. T.S. Eliot used it, too, in The Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock:

The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes,
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes,
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening,
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,
And seeing that it was a soft October night,
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.

(First Published June 1915)

Since reading Prufrock almost twenty years ago, I find it difficult to look at fog without recalling this metaphor.

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