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Readings: Animals

Let us remember the immaculate conception... [pause]
of Dolly the Sheep.
Virgin born of a mother
Virgin born of a father
No mother or father at all, not really
Grandparents, sort of.
Brilliant science:
A cell,
Scraped up from an udder,
excited in a solution,
Grows up
And goes, "Baa!"
Which means, "Who made this world then?"
And the brilliant scientist replies,
"No one, but these are my tools."

Adrian Worsfold


The Blind Men and the Elephant

John Godfrey Saxe (1816-1887)

It was six men of Indostan
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the Elephant
(Though all of them were blind)
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.

The First approached the Elephant,
And happening to fall
Against his broad and sturdy side,
At once began to brawl:
"God bless me but the Elephant
Is very like a wall"

The second, feeling of the tusk,
Cried, "Ho! What have we here
So very round and smooth and sharp"?
To me 'tis mighty clear
This wonder of an Elephant
Is very like a spear!"

The Third approached the animal,
And happening to take
The squirming trunk within his hands,
Thus boldly up and spake:
"I see", quoth he, "The Elephant
Is very like a snake!"

The Fourth reached out a hand,
And felt around the knee,
"What must this wondrous beast be like
Is mighty plain," quoth he.
"'tis clear enough the Elephant
Is very like a tree!"

The Fifth who chanced to touch the ear
Said: "E'en the blindest man
Can tell what this resembles most;
Deny the fact who can,
This marvel of an Elephant
Is very like a fan!"

The Sixth no sooner had begun
About the beast to grope,
Than, seizing on the swinging tail
That fell within his scope,
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a rope!"

And so these men of Indostan
Disputed loud and long,
Each of his own opinion
Exceeding stiff and strong.