Sunday, November 22, 2009


"The matriarch is ill. She can't get up, so another matriarch comes over and lifts her to her feet with her tusks. But in a while she falls again, and this time she will not rise. She dies. Matriarchs from other families visit her. They stand over her giant body, their trunks delicately take in the air a foot or so above her. They nudge her carefully with their tusks.

We call this compassion. But of course we hesitate to say the word because we are speaking of elephants and we draw lines on the earth and we draw lines when it comes to other bloods." - Charles Bowden, Some of the Dead Are Still Breathing