Other kids thought the Jungle Book was a Disney movie with goofy songs; I thought it was part of my father’s wardrobe, since for several years of my life, he was rarely seen without one volume or another of Kipling’s fables of animals who behave like humans, or a little bit better. Kipling imbued his monkeys, the Bandar Log, with our callow, smug, self-satisfaction, reflected in their motto: We are great. We are free. We are wonderful. We are the most wonderful people in all the jungle! We all say so, and so it must be true.
Here is an excerpt from the Road Song of the Bandar Log:
Here we sit in a branchy row,
Thinking of beautiful things we know;
Dreaming of deeds that we mean to do,
All complete, in a minute or two–
Something noble and wise and good,
Done by merely wishing we could.
We’ve forgotten, but–never mind,
Brother, thy tail hangs down behind!
This I never knew about Marv! It’s a lovely memory. 🙂
Ha! That quote cuts to the heart. I might have to give Kipling a look from my slightly more adult vantage; don’t think I ever really have. (What? read Kipling or adopted an adult vantage? Either, both, neither.) OK, it’s 4am; time to go back to sleep before I sully your blog further with my silliness, ❤
Ah yes, the wonderful Jungle Book! I had completely forgotten about this and now it brings such a smile to my heart. I think I will post this motto on my wall for those moments when the clouds are blocking my spirit. You are indeed wonderful my sweet cousin and we all say so. Love you lots!
J encouraged me to read kipling, though i don’t think i ever did much. Its interesting to see what he took from M as a father and what he discarded