Alright, so I was wondering the other day on my flight home from Brazil about something. Penguins. One of the airline movies was the Oscar-Award-Winning Al Gore Production Happy Feet. In short, it's a movie about Penguins. Also out in theaters right now: Surf's Up. In short, IT is a movie about Penguins. And let's not forget the most popular documentary film EVER, the emperor of them all: March of the Penguins. (That was a great date movie, wasn't it?). We all know what that one's about. Why our obsession with the little black and white flightless birds who live their lives in a frozen tundra, go hungry for really long periods of time, and generally just walk around with the rest of their time?
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not a Penguin hater. They can waddle, wonk, and widdle about their icy world all they want. There's nothing wrong with being a penguin. But I sometimes wonder why Penguins catch our attention so. I know, kind of weird that I spend time on such a trivial thought, but I think thinking is a luxury activity these days.
Really, though, is it the binary conflict going on in their worlds, represented in their black and white outer layer? Is it the stunning landscapes they inhabit? Is it the simplicity of their taciturn existence, or the complexity of their gender-swapping relationships that grips us? Or is it just that they're funny?
For the heck of it, here's a poem I wrote a while back, somewhat influenced by...you guessed it!... PENGUINS!!
Black Ice
September 5, 2005 I’d starve a summer with you on my toes Away from Royal shores you cannot crack- And with my back slough off the icy winds Outside- a chill, a season of blank white To warm insides, my love, look down and see. Look up, pale night- an astral symphony Of tonic lights and southern crossing stars. To know one day you’ll chance your life to swim Is Good, is Reason, is God: enough for me. Oh, please hurry the food, if not for me For us and life which hangs below a downy- Feathered skirt torn between my love of life
And Love for you, Gray dancer on my feet.


Whitty Lin said...
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Whitty Lin said...

I would just like to say that I have never seen ANY of those movies. But good job anyways! I have also wondered why we have a fascination for them. I think that the sloth is much more intriguing.

Barb said...

Penguins are totally trendy right now. Sheesh! They are pretty cute, though. It's about time for a new animal obsession, I'd say. (By the way, you neglected to mention the penguins in "Madagascar".)

EBV said...

Indeed, I did. Color me embarrassed. ;o

Kelsey said...

Penguins are just darling :) I love them! I don't quite know what it is about them but they can ALWAYS put a smile on my face :)

So do llamas :)

Anonymous said...

penguins are the "coolest" things in the world, one of the things that humans love about them is the fact that they have tuxes inbeded onto their skin, you forgot the penguins in "farce of the penguins"

Anonymous said...

Penguins are vertical, which make them naturally appealing to us. In addition they are cute and their struggle to survive is life-affirming.

Anonymous said...

Penguins don't live in Tundra!!! They live in Antarctica, South Georgia, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, and Galapagos. Here is a one for you. Why don't polar bears eat penguins? Because they don't live together. Polar bears live in the North and Penguins live in the South.

ebv said...

Sorry, but there IS tundra in Antarctica, South Georgia, Tierra del Fuego, and Argentina. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tundra.

Anonymous said...

Penguins are the awesomest animals on the planet.

1. They are really cute
2. It it is awesome when the waddle
3. They are really cute
4. They are just awesome