|illustration by Phyllis Peacock|
One of my favorite stories as a child was 'The Cricket and the Ant', by Jean de la Fontaine. ** I had to recite the fable in school and to this day I remember every single line, in French.
The cricket was singing all summer while the ant was working to save up food. When winter came the cricket found herself dying of hunger and asked the ant if she would share her food, but the ant said: ‘Well, since you sang all summer, why don’t you dance all winter and let me be?’
There were periods in my life when I identified with the happy-go lucky cricket rather than the ant. I considered myself an 'artiste' with a disdain for the bourgeois goodie-two shoes ant. But as I got older, I came to see the cricket for the fraud that she was and began to look at the ant with different eyes. Obviously the moral of the story was not wasted on me, but because of my bohemian background I still had my reservations. Read more...