Sunday, December 30, 2012

we are the little folk

For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack.
Rudyard Kipling (30 december 1865-1936) writer,  nobel laureate

today is the birthday of rudyard kipling a fascinating individual and brilliant writer. in 1907,  kipling was awarded the nobel prize in literature. he was the first english language writer to receive a nobel and remains the youngest literature laureate. 

kipling was a prodigious writer - short stories, novels, poetry.  today's quote comes from  the jungle book,  perhaps his most famous collection of short stories.
when i read in the writer's almanac that  today was kipling's birthday, it wasn't his short stories or  kim, a picaresque novel about an adventurous boy named kim, that came to mind;  rather it was his poem a pict song that jumped into my consciousness.  the poem appears at the end of a short story entitled the winged hats which is part of fascinating 1906 collection of short stories published under the title of  puck of pook's hill. each story in the collection is bracketed by a poem which relates to the theme or subject of the story.
the picts were the original inhabitants of scotland and are often characterized by their blue war paint. although they were persecuted by the invading romans they were never subjugated by them.  kipling  celebrated the defiance of  underdogs and "little folk" in his poem a pict song. 

i first encountered the poem as a song on billy bragg's 1996 album william bloke.   

as we end one year and enter a new one,  i offer this as a song to lead us into a new year!

photo: historical reenactor outside of edinburgh castle, scotland, october 2012


tut-tut said...

I believe I have that book around here somewhere. I will endeavor to find it.

Watson said...

Happy 2013 kimy!
Thank you for helping to make my past year so interesting.

California Girl said...

happy New Year kimy!