"The unexamined life is not worth living" Socrates

- - scatterings of ideas sent to my younger self, a sensitive girl who was fooled into believing she was a boy because of anatomy - -

Friday 14 October 2011

When through the window...

This morning, a post that is pretty impulsive. I am not generally impulsive, but then, I have lived a very controlled existence for most of my life. While things in this regard are improving, sometimes it is good to be given a reminder. Worrying about image is such a burden, and who suffers most from the choice of an inappropriate public image more than the perpetrator, me in this case?

This morning on the radio, they were talking about Winnie the Pooh. It reminded me of the cute little honey lover's creator, A.A. Milne, and that reminded me of my childhood, and from there, a cautionary poem by the same author. Perhaps I should have been wiser, and taken its message to heart, but after all, I was only seven when I read this for the first time:

King John was not a good man — 
He had his little ways. 
And sometimes no one spoke to him 
For days and days and days.

I still have the book, sitting on my lap right now, "Now We Are Six", by A.A. Milne, with 'decorations' by Earnest H. Shepard. Oh how I loved those illustrations; still do. :)

Read the whole poem King John's Christmas here. I would hold the book up and read to you if you were sitting round the rocking chair with me, but this will have to do kids.

Hugs to all,


  1. The thought of you reading that by the fire makes me smile. :)

  2. :) I will enjoy being a grandmother someday.

  3. Wow. Talk about a timely post.

    I was deeply influenced my Milne as a child. In college I read Hoff's wonderful "Tao of Pooh" and the inappropriately angry "Te of Piglet" (not so wonderful). I was thinking just yesterday how much I would like to read the Pooh stories again. I believe I've grown enough for them to offer me an even deeper meaning.

    Thank you for the link, Halle. I've either never read that poem, or I had completely forgotten it. Either way, it's a wonderful morning surprise.


  4. I believe in synchronicity pp. So glad it pleased you.

    Never read 'Tao of Pooh'. I did acquire a copy of 'Winnie Ille Pu', the latin version, in high hopes of using it as a motivation to learn some Latin. LOL

    Ecce Eduardus Ursus scalis nunc tump-tump-tump occipite gradus pulsante post Christophorum Robinum descendens.

  5. Hi Halle,

    I didn't read Winnie the Pooh until I was in my 50s. I read it then, because the Tao of Pooh, sounded so nice and interesting, and it turned out to be just that, so I bought and read Winnie the Pooh too.

    The book I read over and over again when I was young, was the 'The Jungle book', and my favourite story was 'Rikkitikkitavi'.

    Thanks for your delightful post.


  6. "Now We Are Six" was a large part of my childhood too, along with all the other A.A.Milne books - living less than fifty miles from the actual Hundred Acre wood made it all the more real. My own personal favorite was "They're changing guard at Buckingham Palace; Christopher Robin went down with Alice", but I can't remember which book that was from. I think they were my introduction to philosophical thought.

  7. Anna, I never read "The Jungle Book". Never to late to feed the child within.

    Ah Liz, I too loved that one. It is in "When We Were Very Young",

    says Alice. :)

  8. Has anyone here read "Green Eggs and Ham?" lol...more my speed I guess.

  9. Hehe, Suzi, I suppose this post is the English connection coming through, but I read Dr. Seuss to our kids although I did not have it myself.

    I do so like green eggs and ham, thank you Sam-I-am


  10. I liked Milne's work as well. He knew how to bring self discovery to an elementary school level. Consider,

    "When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it."
    -Winnie the Pooh, The House at Pooh Corner

    When I went to school, one of our favorite authors was H.A. Rey. Yes, Curious George.

  11. Winnie the Pooh was my first reading, and I still fondly recall it. And the final lines are something of a mesage of hope and consolation for the lost things in my life...

    "But wherever they go, and whatever happens to them on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the Forest, a little boy and his Bear will always be playing."

    I like Shephard's collaboration with Kenneth Grahame, too; not just Wind in the Willows, but Golden Age, relatively recently discovered by me...

  12. ...I forgot long ago how *good* a read A.A. Milne is, and have stayed in that state of being for far too long. Something about growing up and seeing the world as I was told it should be rather than the way a child knows it to be.

    Thank you, Halle, for the reminder.

    “Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind. "Pooh?" he whispered.
    "Yes, Piglet?"
    "Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's hand. "I just wanted to be sure of you.”

  13. Thank you both Frances and Dru for reminding me that the Winnie stories should be reread too, not just my beloved poems.

    It seems that childhood wisdom is something others here cherish too.

    Slowly recovering a self that was sweet and caring but had to, as you say Frances, see the world as I was told it must be, there is much to be relearned and recovered.

    Thinking of things, Sarah Murphy left a comment, but it only appeared in my mail, not here, and she reminded me of another Milne gem:

    "When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it."

    -Winnie the Pooh, The House at Pooh Corner

  14. Judjing by all these comments your impulsiveness rung bells with your readers. Here, all the good and sometimes cruel lessons learned from tales by the Grimm Brothers or from the fate of Max and Moritz the vicious prankers of Wilhelm Busch.