Monday, June 21, 2010


CLOSE-UP


I was out early this imminently rainy morning checking the firewood tarps and at one point during the process, as I rose to my full height beside a cord of oak I found myself close-up eye-to-eye with a frog the size of a chick pea, who'd been chilling out atop the tarp enjoying the gray dampness that was his day, on his rampart. I wasn't surprised to see a frog up that early, even though his crew had been up all night singing about the wonderful rain and this perfectly watery environment with prayers for more and suchlike, the common material of frog lyrics. He, however, drew back a millimeter or so in shock at the sudden appearance of this huge head before him, but at once he regained his composure and stood stock still in that haughty froggy way, so we just stood there staring at each other.

I don't know how often frogs get to see huge heads up close like this, but I thought him remarkably brave to stay in place; thus we got to see each other very close up. He got so see how I need a shave and should clean my glasses, maybe do something about those eyebrows and get a new hat for godsake, whereas I got to see how perfectly green his body was-- the perfect green, to my eye. I can think of no match for it really, a bit too light for imperial jade... I can't say I've actually seen this kind of matte green anywhere before, maybe in Aztec wall paintings, but it was deeply appreciable to me. The upper parts of his minutely greened limbs were dusted in gold powder, like you see on some old Japanese creations of urushi worth millions of dollars, but his was an older kind of masterwork he'd had done for free. His splayed and bulbous hands and feet were translucent, a nearly transparent cloudy green of beyond museum quality. He also had some neat black curlicue pinstriping here and there, most notably on his face and around his eyes, two tiny orbs of dark, deep onyx that just looked at me with that look the world gets on its face sometimes when you really stare at it.

We stood there gazing at each other in natural silence until I just had to say something, me being the bargee, so I said Wow you are a work of art, that design is amazing and those colors are just... His eyes seemed to say Maybe. I don't know. I've never really seen myself. Anyway, I didn't do any of it, so what can I be proud of? Don't praise me, or the next thing you know I'll be taking credit for it; you two-leggeds know where that can lead. Anyway, I wasn't always like this, I had a tough childhood. For a long time I wasn't even a frog. No legs, even had a tail, constantly morphing, it was all pretty traumatic,... Anyhow, none of it was my fault or doing, so I can't really feel guilty about it or take pride in it, can I. You look proud, I said, the way you stand there. No, that's just the way you two-leggeds look when you think you have something to be proud of. Which isn't too much lately, is it... Saying which, he hopped casually away.

Jaw dropped, gazing after him, my huge head was shocked at his wisdom and all that he knew about us.


2 comments:

Cro Magnon said...

How many thoughts does a frog really have? I'm hungry, I'm afraid, I want to reproduce. That could be it. Alternatively, they might compose poetry, and just keep it to themselves.

Greetings from France. Cro.

Chrissy said...

Now u got me thinking about what my backyard lizard may be thinkin about me! lol... I would hate to think what was going thru my cat's head... The expressions she gives me is enough..lol