Monday, August 31, 2009


Frogs and Men

Joseph Wood Krutch, The Twelve Seasons: A Perpetual Calendar for the Country (New York: William Sloan Associates, 1949), p. 69 (August, on Hyla versicolor, the gray tree-frog):
Several times, out of a sheer selfish desire to make him acknowledge that, from a frog's point of view, I am good for something, I have elevated some tidbit, on the end of a straw, under his very nose. Twice he has snatched it casually; twice, when I became very insistent, he impatiently brushed it away with his foreleg. But usually he simply stares motionless and straight ahead after the fashion of the Buddha he so much resembles. Frogs, he tells me, do not need men. They can get along very well without them, would rather not acknowledge their existence. The sense of independence is worth more than an occasional supererogatory worm. Mankind, so far as frogs are concerned, serves no useful purpose. There is no teleological explanation for the human race's existence.
Hyla versicolor

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