Thursday, January 14, 2010

Of Turtles and Snails

I find myself writing about slow-moving animals. I have two picture books featuring snails (and a turtle makes a cameo in each of these) Plus there's a poem My Turtle Ran Away. And also How to Serve Banana Slugs.

I don't like creepy, crawly, flying things and they're never welcome in my home (and you know who you are!) But if I'm stepping onto my first step to step up onto my porch, and there's a slug, I have to look down and say, "I know how you feel."

Have you heard the one about the guy who hears a knock on his door? He opens the door, looks down and sees a snail. So he picks the snail up and hurls him out to the street.

Two years later, he hears another knock. Opens the door and there's the snail again, saying,
"What was all that about?"

Now let's not forget turtles. They look like they've seen it all and know much more than you do, right? When I was a kid, I had a poster in my room that said, "A turtle only gets ahead by sticking out his neck." Now I never was big on sticking out my neck. But I liked looking at that drawing every day.

A couple of years ago I bought a small painting by Asheville artist Moni Hill. It's got a sweet little turtle on it and the words:
We have very little time. We must move very slowly -Zen proverb

It's been hanging on my daughter's door ever since, and, even though it has not slowed my little girl down one bit, I like looking at that painting.
So if you see me around town, moving very slowly, now you know why.
Now tell me what animals you like to draw or write poems about or see on your porch.


  1. I like turtles, too. They remind me of the bible verse that says, "Be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger." :) :)

  2. I love all our animal relations...though must profess I am the Wolfie Mama, always on the trail, always observing and, mess with my family, you'll find me all fang and claw!

    I DO love turtles though...and it's getting to be more my an old woman eats me.