It's nice to see the Disney/Dreamworks animations on tele over Christmas - wonderfully done and always leaving you with a lump in the throat and a tear considering if it ought to well in the eye. But then I check the bird table and see the blackbirds chasing each other off, and the greenfinches competing for a perch on the sunflower feeders as they try to deal with all the snow and ice we have at the moment. Goodness, we even had a squirrel on the bird-table - hunched there like a giant. I gave it a few minutes to have breakfast, and then chased it off and moved the bird-table away from the fence! That's me, playing God!
Why do we have to bring our kidz up to think that 'nature' comprises little furry friends pitted against Big Bad creatures (including humans)? It's all, of course, a metaphor for Life (or could it be just a metaphor for Politics?), and perhaps we should nurture childhood innocence.
But even as I put those words down I feel that I've not quite got it right. Do country-reared children have any less of a romantic imagination than those who live in towns or cities? They know that Mother Nature can be both harsh and beautiful. They know that if you want to have good things in life you must work for them and that there is no Bountiful One who will wave a magic wand and produce a Happy Ending.