Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Soon, my roaring begins

Once upon a time in the land of Lyon, I was an unknown lion waiting for an artist. Taken in by Alain Pouillet, a French painter (see an example of his art HERE), I was transformed into the beautiful creature you see in the photo above. Inside my hide, I was still Roary the lion who wanted to roar about the injustice I see in the world. While protecting the people in agony below me, I felt helpless to do more, but I was nevertheless required to stand tall as people admired the artist's work on the canvas of my fur. It was months, nay years, before Bonnie stumbled upon my photo and felt we should become partners in a writing project. I would be able to ROAR like a lion!

When she discovered me, I was known simply as Lion #30. Now I am a literary lion, working with a published writer, ready to roar to protect people in need, like the persons represented by the faces on my pedestal. There are 21 of them, so I have convinced Bonnie to work with me to produce 21 roars: Roar #1 will appear soon on this blog, as soon as I decide where to start in the myriad problems confronting the world today. Wish me luck, fellow lions, and please feel free to suggest subjects for my roars.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Pardon the construction work

This has been a rush job, which is coming along handily, but I really have moved in before the construction workers quite finished my den.

I'll show you the interior another time, when Sophia and I get settled in here. I have moved all my posts and comments from my first blog into this one, and you may read them below. There is no need to keep the other one bookmarked because I won't be using it any longer, once I move the stuff on the sidebar to this new den.

THE ... literary lion has a new den

I've moved, again. The first blog was built off Bonnie's many blogs, and I wanted one of my own. Both look the same, with one very important word added to my title:
THE ... Literary Lion of Lyon

Here, you will be able to read my profile, see my family photo album on the sidebar, read my elegant writing, see what I'm up to ... as I try to educate my human to the fullest of her ability.

Roary ^..^
moving in, moving on

Oh, these humans...

Bonnie sat down at her computer this morning as we had agreed, while I did my best to inspire her. I can see already that it will take a lot of work on my part to move her to a good place for writing. As it is, she jumps right in to the actual typing, putting words on paper like there's no tomorrow. Now I must teach her to meditate before setting down the words. She needs to think herself into the scene before she tries to write about it. Human are so slow to understand, though she isn't TRYING to be obtuse. Do you want to see what she managed to write? She posted it on my (our?) Lion #30 spot over at Seamus's place, so I can copy-and-paste it here:

How Roary got his name:

I named him Roary because of his deep, magnificent roar. Hey, he's proud of that roar! The name seemed appropriate when I studied the 'screaming' faces below his feet and felt the power of his roar. Take a look at those faces around the lion's feet. They each resemble the person in the famous painting The Scream by Munch. What do you think? Does Roary need to roar for those 21 faces? Do they need his strength?

I looked up Roary's name online and now I'm wondering if I misspelled it. Under a different spelling (RUAIDHRÍ, pronounced ROR-ee), I found it means "red king" from Irish ruadh "red" combined with rí "king." This was the name of the last high king of Ireland, reigning in the 12th century. Roary is a king, so that fits, since lions are known to be kings. Red? Sometimes his fur looks slightly reddish, in the right light, but maybe there's another meaning. Red of tooth and nail, perhaps? Or tooth and claw, killing to survive on the African savannah.

I'll probably let her go on thinking she named me. The other lions and I have all told our human writing partners our names, telepathically, of course. Humans, though, are less developed than most of the animals and don't hear anything, most of the time. Most likely the reason is that they have failed to open the third eye and have thus far been unable to use their inner ears. Bonnie heard my powerful message to her as "ROR-ee," which was enough. I don't care how she spells it and have adopted her spelling for convenience.

I was chatting with Dewey this morning: "Let me think of a word to describe Bonnie ... hmmm ... you humans look so naked to me, not having any fur, you know. When you want a fur coat, you kill an animal and take theirs. Not nice, not nice at all. Or else you drape cloth all over yourselves, making it quite evident to the whole animal kingdom that you want to hide your bodies. Let's see, unlike lions, Bonnie is not elegant. Neither does she walk softly and gracefully, as we lions do. I'll have to give this some thought and get back to you."

Dewey had challenged my idea that Bonnie was pretty good, though I wouldn't call a 67-year-old woman pretty. Now I'm stuck. I have looked through my thesaurus to no avail. I need help, so I'm calling on my lion friends to tell me how they would describe THEIR humans. What words would you use?
2 comments (from my original blog):

On June 18, 2007, Endelyn said...
Well, one of the first things that my owner did was go away for a week! Now that she's back she seems... well... a little NOISY. I can see that I too will have to teach her that silence can be golden and inspirational.

On June 18, 2007, Roary said...
Well, what can you expect? They got rather uppity when they came down from the trees and started going about on their two hind paws.

Working agreement

Bonnie tells me she has made the BIG announcement, not that it is any surprise to my friends in the pride. They already know Sophia is my mate and that she is expecting our first cub (or cubs). I have posted a photo of her on what amounts to my desk, by putting Sophia at the top of my blog. Maybe when she arrives, I'll move the photo down. Or maybe I'll put it in this post. Or maybe (wise move for a lion), I'll ask the lioness herself what she prefers. Ah, yes! Ah, yes.

We have work to do, Bonnie and I. Today is Father's Day, she tells me. Since I am not yet a father ... or am I? ... no, not yet ... Since I am not yet a father, I have time to make plans for the coming week.

After dinner last night, Bonnie and I came up with what may be a workable schedule for us. I get the idea she is used to writing as the spirit moves her, but Bonnie is already learning I'm a muse of a different stripe. She has agreed to regular, daily time together at the computer, with her hands on the keyboard, working. I may give her Sundays off; she says that's a tradition, though we lions know that when we get lazy and sit around the savannah, we don't eat. Maybe it's a human thing. At any rate, our real work begins in the morning.

Now pardon me, please, while I get back to my reading.
2 comments (from my original blog):

On June 17, 2007, colleen said...
Every lions going to want their own blog now...and a girlfriend!

On June 17, 2007, Roary said...
Maybe we shameless lions will take over the blogosphere! In the sense of becoming the most trusted commentators, of course. I'm sure Elliot would be an excellent blogger, if he's interested. Not all of us want the extra work, of course.

Roary ^..^

What's in a name?

Since she looked up mine, I suppose I should look up the derivation of Bonnie's name before she comes to dinner this evening. Hmmm, Bonnie, B-o-n ... that's good! (Small inside joke for those of us with a smattering of French ... bon means "good" as in bon bons.) Oh, here it is: Bonnie means "pretty" from the Scottish word bonnie, which was itself derived from Middle French bon "good." Told ya' so!

Pretty and good. Pretty good, which doesn't quite mean what either word means. Bonnie's pretty good, though. Speakers of the English language don't usually call a 67-year-old woman "pretty," though maybe "good" would fit her, when she isn't mistrusting her writing partner.

I wonder if she's heard of The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri. Now, the poor fellow in that book REALLY had a problem with his name. Thank goodness I'm not named Gogol!

Time to go fire up the grill.
4 comments (from my original blog):

On June 16, 2007 Dewey said...
Roary! Many people would consider a 67 year old human pretty!

On June 17, 2007, Shameless said...
Are you going to say Bonnie Apetit before dinner? I am enjoying reading what you have to say ... very very nice.

On June 18, 2007, Roary said...
Good one, Seamus! I'll have to remember that for next time.

Dewey, I've heard "beautiful" attributed to elderly humans, but "pretty" sounds rather child-like, to me. We might say "what a pretty picture!" to a child or "what a pretty dress you are wearing!" Let me think of a word to describe Bonnie ... hmmm ... you humans look so naked to me, not having any fur, you know. When you want a fur coat, you kill an animal and take theirs. Not nice, you know. Or else you drape cloth all over yourselves, making it quite evident to the whole animal kingdom that you want to hide your bodies. Let's see, unlike lions, Bonnie is not elegant. Neither does she walk softly and gracefully, as we lions do. I'll have to give this some thought and get back to you.

Roary ^..^

On June 18, 2007, Bonnie Jacobs said...
Yes, Roary, I read The Namesake and posted a review of it on my Bonnie's Books blog. Click on the title of the book in your post, which will take you to my review.

Grilled salmon, anyone?

Somebody give that woman a good stiff drink to relax her!

No, no, I'm sorry, Bonnie, I should be talking directly to you. We really need to sit down and have a long talk, especially after you posted "Red of tooth and nail" on your blog.

How could you possibly say, "Red of tooth and nail (umm, claw) would fit the life of a lion on the plains of Africa, killing to survive. That gives me shivers. But surely Roary wouldn't turn on me, would he?"

You should know by now what I'm like. You should feel at ease around me and realize there's no WAY I would ever turn on you like that. The most I would ever do is ROAR at you. Haven't you heard the saying "his roar is worst than his bite"? Natter, natter, grumble, fret, you GET the idea, don't you? Yes, it means the same thing as bark and bite, for Pete's sake!

I don't plan to eat you. Haven't you seen what I eat? Of course, you have! So you should know I am a connoisseur of fine food and drink. Would you join me for grilled salmon this evening? I have a fantastic recipe for salmon fillet using bourbon whiskey, brown sugar, honey, soy sauce, a little ginger, and black pepper. Whaddaya think?

5 comments (from my original blog):

On June 16, 2007, Vesper said...
Hey Roary,

I think it's great! I simply love grilled salmon. (Not to mention the bourbon... :-) ) Thank you for stopping by and for inviting me at your place. I'm sort of missing the African plains.
You and your mistress, Bonnie, are always welcome to visit me and Vesper.

All the best from Alexander

On June 16, 2007, LJCohen said...
Yum! Sounds fabulous, Roary. When's supper?

I haven't figured out what Lucidus loves to eat. Probably juicy words. :)

Thanks for the invite and for dropping in to visit us at the Blue Muse Ranch.

Lisa and Lucidus

On June 16, 2007, Dewey said...
Mmm, that salmon sounds good. But I think my husband is in the kitchen making a spinach salad right now, so no salmon for me tonight.

On June 17, 2007, Tirso said...
hi roary,
that looks delicious!
i would love to dine with it all gone?


On June 17, 2007, Roary said...
Friends, all of you, the lovely photo shows what I served Bonnie for dinner last night. Indeed, it is all gone. However, you are welcome to drop by next weekend and we'll party. How's that? Invite the others. Let's get the whole pride together. Maybe Sophia will arrive before the party. Bring a dish, if you like, and I'll provide a thing or two myself. Please mention this on the writing circle blog, in case I forget it when I mosey over there later.

Roary ^..^

Roar elocution lessons

Ghufran, who is paired up with Pearl, left me a message: "For sure Roary, roar for the people who don't roar loud enough for themselves, or give them roar elocution lessons." Thanks, Ghufran, this is a wonderful idea! You have inspired me. Roar elocution lessons ... that is absolutely perfect! I've already gotten this sign made and need to borrow some tools to put it in front of my den. Oh, thank you for the use of your hammer. Now if you would hold this post steady while I pound it into the ground ....

Library of a literary lion

Pardon these temporary lights on my philosophy shelf. Just wanted to share a few of my serious books.

Bonnie wrote about some of my books yesterday, calling her post Library of a Lion. Good grief! She mentioned a bunch of children's books first, as though that list helped to define me. Sure, I do read about lions, literary and otherwise, but I also read philosophy, history, politics, sociology, earth sciences, archeology, geography, global warming, English -- I managed to add French after traveling to France from the Serengeti, but this American English stuff if tough! I've managed so far, probably because so many Americans came to the Serengeti, but I need to keep working on my vocabulary. I sound pretty good, you say? Thanks.

Let's return to the subject of books. Have you heard about Ishmael? He's a silverback gorilla who advertised for a student. I recommend Daniel Quinn's book about him, which is entitled simply Ishmael. The book offers readers an entirely new perspective on humanity's relationship to the world. I have also read Quinn's sequels, My Ishmael and The Story of B. These books are, of course, in my literary library. So are a couple of other books by Quinn, Beyond Civilization and his newest one If They Give You Lined Paper, Write Sideways, a 2007 book. You haven't heard of it? Well, it figures. You humans seem so smug, not that I'm putting you down or anything. It's just that you are so pleased with yourselves, so sure of yourselves. For example, you are proud to call yourselves civilized, as though civilization were a good thing. I'm not sure about that at all.

Louis and Viaggiatore, you and the other lions in our pride know what I'm talking about. Humans just don't get it, do they? It seemed to take Ishmael forever to get the human to hear his thoughts, though we animals regularly communicate in that way. I've already noticed that Bonnie's cat Kiki comes and sits in her lap, thinking thoughts toward her. Yet Bonnie doesn't always get it. Kiki walks over to the door and sits politely waiting for Bonnie to hear her asking telepathically to be allowed outside. Sometimes Bonnie comes to open the door, but only when she SEES Kiki sitting there. How lame is that?

Humans are so slow to learn from us, but have we ever made the mistake of inventing "civilization" and fencing off land from others? No, of course not. Oh, well, more on this later. I want to keep reading Quinn's books.
5 comments (from the original blog):

On June 16, 2007, L.M.Noonan said...
I read 'Ishmael' years ago and found it to be a truly imaginative and cautionary tale. I haven't read any of the other novels you've mentioned. I did make the mistake of watching the movie based on the book. I thought a great read and an actor like Anthony Hopkins would make for a really good movie...bah phooey humbug.
welcome to the pride.

On June 16, 2007, Roary said...
Thanks for the welcome. Movies never seem to live up to the book. By the way, don't forget to tell Lorenza that I hope she'll come over for a visit. Thanks.

Roary ^..^

On June 16, 2007, Rob Kistner said...
Roary -

Artheo here!

It was nice of you to invite me to your blog here!

And yes, I remember you. I came to you as your muse, the time you were trying to compose that ode to the wounded antelope — of course, claiming you had no hand (paw) in the matter of the injury… ;)

My, you’ve come a long way… your own blog… and who’s this human called Bonnie you’ve partnered with.

She seems proficient enough as a scribe — given she’s only a human.

Thank you for stopping by Rob’s blog, Image & Vere. Rob’s a nice enough fellow. Seamus asked me to keep an eye on him — he’s getting old… bad heart and all, you know.

Seamus explained that for the sake of Rob’s male ego — I should let him think he has ‘adopted’ me, so… he tries his best to act as ‘my protector’. Protect THE PROTECTOR… I think not! But, I abide his fantasy, and encourage his creativity at the same time.

Humans… so very strange?

Im glad I stopped by your blog Roary... your own song even... very cool -- very cool indeed.

It was nice hearing from you again my friend.

Well, got to fly!

On June 16, 2007, Roary said...
Hello, Artheo! So good to see you again. You kind of like the human you got, huh? Me, too, she's okay ... also getting old, but in good health as far as I know.

Now about that wounded antelope, I remember that day. How could you imply that I had anything to do with that? If I wanted to kill him, I'd have done a better job than that! My good fellow, I can dispatch antelopes with the best of the lions, so watch what you're saying, please.

Arrhummph! So sorry 'bout that. Too bad you must leave so quickly; I'm sure we could find lots to reminisce about. Do come back soon.

Roary ^..^

On June 16, 2007, Remiman said...
Zacch here. Thanks for leaving your calling card with rel. I'm surprised I got it at all. He's an ok guy. but gets distacted easily in his old age. His heart is in the right place but sometimes he tries my patience. I spent the entire day in the lab today doing some investigating for Viaggiatore. When I came out i tried to discuss it with rel so that he could pass along the results to Scarlett but the info was a little above his head. Don't misunderstand, he's of average intelligence but that doesn't quite get it in our world does ti?

Anyway, he did mention that you had inquire for me. I think we may have collaborated on some literary works in the past.....Let's get toether at the next pride mtg. and reminisce.

Hey, it's me, Roary

Listen, my new writing partner Bonnie has a great blog over there at Words from a Wordsmith, but she gets to do all the talking. Don't you agree with me that I should have a blog of my own? Here 'tis! And let me tell you, let ... me ... tell ... you, let me just TELL you that I plan to do all the talking here! Hear me roarrrrrRRRRRRRR, I'm telling you!

I've got a lot to roar about, starting with these people at my feet that I have sworn to protect. There are (I think) about 21 or so of them, and I plan to listen to the stories each one has to tell. Click on this photo of me and look at their faces up close. Go ahead and do it now.

Did you look? Those faces haunt me, and I intend to do something about it. Did you read my theme song just above? They inspired it, these faces, these screaming faces full of such pain and agony. If I have to, I can write anything. I shall write to right the wrongs. If others are not moved by the stories of those in pain, that's their problem; I myself will do all I am able to do by putting their stories out onto the blogosphere. I am a literary lion, and that's the only way I know how to help.

I've been educating myself about what's going on in the world. I have been from the Serengeti to France and now to the United States, and I have seen that things are not all right. No, not at all. You know it, I know it, and we must act. I'm ready; are you?
3 comments (on the original blog):

On June 15, 2007, Dewey said...
I think it's great that you have your own blog now. I wonder if Louis wants his own blog? Mostly he seems to want to sleep. He says he has jet lag. Maybe if he knew you would read and leave him comments he'd get motivated. Do you know if any other lions have their own blogs?

On June 15, 2007, Roary said...
Please tell Louis he is invited to come visit me here. He's always welcome, and we do have a lot of catching up to do since we left Lyon.

No, I don't know about any others in the pride having blogs, but maybe they would consider it. I have found that it's really quite simple to set up something like this.

Roary ^..^

On June 15, 2007, Wanderlust Scarlett said...
Wow, Bonnie and Roary that is so great! Absolutely brilliant!

It's a beautiful looking blog too... what a lot of work! We look forward to visiting it often.

Scarlett & Viaggiatore