Thursday, December 6, 2018

Rik George writes & draws

The Alpha-Bestiary

C is for Cathy, 
The coatimundi from Canton 
Who cradled her daughter in her arms 
As she ran through alleys and byways 
Calling for cats to come catch the mice 
Who were eating her baby’s morning rice.
Through the streets and past the pavilions Cathy ran 
Calling on police and civilians to collect the cats 
To catch the mice who were eating her baby’s evening rice. 
Alas for Cathy, the coatimundi, 
She spoke only Cantonese, 
The cats only Greek, 
So the mice went on eating the rest of the week!


1 comment:

  1. The coatimundi belongs to the raccoon family (Procyonidae). It is double-jointed and its ankles can rotate beyond 180°, so it can descend trees head-first. Its snout can rotate up to 60° in any direction. Females and young males up to two years of age are gregarious and travel through their territories in noisy, loosely organized bands of 4-25 individuals. They often hold their tail erect to keep the band together in tall vegetation. Adult males become solitary due to collective aggression from the females, but they join the female groups during the breeding season, when the females mate with multiple males.

    Canton is the way Guangdong used to be Romanized, but the name was applied to just the city Guangzhou and not the province. "Canton" was derived from the Portuguese "Cidade de Cantão," a muddling of dialectical pronunciations. "Guang" means "vast" and has been applied to the region since 226, when the prefecture was created; Guangdong and its neighbor Guangxi are "expanse east" and "expanse west," and together are known as "Two Expanses."

    Greek influences in China have long been controversially maintained, especially after Alexander the Great's conquests in the Bactria area; various historians and archeologists have attributed the emergence of lifelike statuary in India and China (and even the terra cotta soldiers associated with the tomb of China's 1st emperor) to Greek influence. Greek references to China may date as far back as the 5th century BCE, but Strabon, who lived in Asia Minor in the 1st century BCE, referred to the Serike people of northwestern China -- the name was derived from "ser," the Greek name for silkworm, which was itself possibly taken from the Chinese word for silk. In the 2nd century Klaudios Ptolemaios in Alexandria accurately located both Serica (north China0 and Sinae (south China), derived from Qin. In the "Periplus of the Erythraean Sea," written between the 1st and 3rd centuries, mentioned "Thin," probably a variant of Sinae


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