Our relationship to animals has always been a bit complicated. We have many pets (goats, donkeys, chickens, cats, a goose who torments three out of four of us and thinks the other is his mommy) and are surrounded by creatures at which we marvel more than we probably should (I’m talking to you, raccoon who keeps coming in our cat door). We have a groundhog living under one of our barns, which worried us somewhat until she had five babies who are now feasting on our vegetable garden. A few days ago, we caught a baby then were too wimpy to drive it away and release it (won’t it miss it’s mommy???) so we kept it in a dog carrier for a few days, the kids feeding it a variety of greens while we tried (unsuccessfully) to trap its siblings, then finally let it go. Here. Yes, it’s pathetic, but I like to think we’re in some sort of harmony with nature, albeit tormented, since I’ll bet that little groundhog went straight into the garden to feast on our fledgling beans and peas.
Anyway, I came across a few interesting articles about writers and nature. In The Chronicle of Higher Education, a piece about E.B. White’s writing about animals related to his relationship with his family (via)
In the Los Angeles Review of Books, Barbara Ehrenreich writes about humans’ longstanding contempt for animals, wild and tame.