The Lion and The Mouse

On WetCanvas (a forum for artists) there was a challenge to create something using Aesop’s Fables as a theme.

The Library of Congress, has each story in full (click link).  The illustrations alone are worth looking at. Many of the illustrations are interactive, I was charmed by them. Such a great site and resource, check it out!

Using ink and gilt,  I chose the Fable of the Lion and the Mouse. The following text is from the Library of Congress’s site. My original illustration follows it.

The Lion & the Mouse

A Lion lay asleep in the forest, his great head resting on his paws. A timid little Mouse came upon him unexpectedly, and in her fright and haste to get away, ran across the Lion’s nose. Roused from his nap, the Lion laid his huge paw angrily on the tiny creature to kill her.

“Spare me!” begged the poor Mouse. “Please let me go and some day I will surely repay you.”

The Lion was much amused to think that a Mouse could ever help him. But he was generous and finally let the Mouse go.

Some days later, while stalking his prey in the forest, the Lion was caught in the toils of a hunter’s net. Unable to free himself, he filled the forest with his angry roaring. The Mouse knew the voice and quickly found the Lion struggling in the net. Running to one of the great ropes that bound him, she gnawed it until it parted, and soon the Lion was free.

“You laughed when I said I would repay you,” said the Mouse. “Now you see that even a Mouse can help a Lion.”

A kindness is never wasted.

All text and images other than Aesop’s Fable are

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2018

 

 

 

 

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The Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum

Freedom is the open window through which pours the sunlight of the human spirit and human dignity. ~ Herbert Hoover

When you enter the Presidential Library of Herbert Hoover, there is a  beautifully made mixed media piece by Richard Pinney.  There are wood carvings and photographs and all sorts of bits and pieces.  I was quite taken with it and inspired as well.

Absolute freedom of the press to discuss public questions is a foundation stone of American liberty. ~ Herbert Hoover

Children are our most valuable natural resource. ~ Herbert Hoover

These dolls were given to President Hoover by Belgian children as a thank you for his war famine relief efforts.  The lady doll seems to be imploring the rather haughty male doll. I am not sure why he has his back to her but I am quite sure that his hat is to die for.

There’s also a slightly out of focus ghostly reflection that appears to be wearing a rather dashing black and white checkered coat. Interesting.

This toy fire truck was made in dedication to the fire fighters who put out the fire at the White House in 1929.

The fire started in the White House attic where 200,000 government pamphlets about all sorts of subjects were stored and then had the good sense to set themselves ablaze.

The President, his son and several other men, worked to remove as many files and historical items as possible while Mrs. Hoover carried on with the Christmas party for children she was hosting.  The children apparently didn’t notice the fire and good times were had.  Mrs. Hoover later handed out cast iron fire trucks to the children that had been at the party.

Hebert Hoover certainly had his share of foibles as all people do but he was an interesting man who did interesting things.  I highly recommend going to his library if you’re in the area.  If you like to meander, the grounds are quite large and perfect for a stroll.  He is buried on the grounds. 

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©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2018

 

 

 

 

 

The Pumpkin Dragon

Through triangle eyes

He glared at the night

He stared at the night

He dared the night

 

To try and break through

His stalwart candlelight

He had read

Of a serpent

On a medieval page

Who loathed all pumpkins

And in a serpentine rage

Would crush the life

From innocent gourds

Leaving pieces scattered about

For the rampaging hordes

latin dragon medieval

He heard the leaves rustle

Crackle

And break

Oh no! It was that

Evil and Ancient old snake!

 

It wrapped round his midriff

And he started to shake

He found it surprisingly fuzzy

For a centuries old snake

And in that moment

As it started to lean

He realized it was only Dummy

Dressed up for Hallowe’en!

Happy Hallowe’en

From Sammy

And Zeus

Medieval Pumpkin Dragon ~ Ink and metallic watercolor, 11×9 inches

My rather shabby Latin reads “Beware the Pumpkin Dragon ~ It will eat your Eyes ~ Your Heart ~ And steal your breath ~ Beware!

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2017

 

The Cage, the Clown and the Curse

Hanging in an iron cage

Above the weathered path

Was a smirking scowling

Absurdly demented

 Grinning psychopath

scary clown costume halloween.

Come here he said

With a sharp toothed smile

And let me tell you a tale

Of horror and gore

And murder and more

And such that will make you pale

.

Oh you macabre mime

With your twisted old rhyme

You do not scare me at all

Stuck there in your cage

With your lonely dark rage

You’ll be dead by the end of the fall

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But he mocked me with glee

For on All Hallows Eve

When the shadows rode low on the ground

That evil old clown

One magic trick he had found

To free him precipitously

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He cast on me

A vermilion curse

As he cackled over the boos of the hoard

To my utter dismay

I was now in his cage

And I had transformed into a gourd!

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The last that I saw him

That gruesome old fool

He was dancing in the dying leaves

Cackling, spiteful

Insanely delightful

Wailing

Happy Halloween!

scary clown costume Halloween.

Boo!

©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2016

All rights reserved.

The Ghoul

Slowly, drifting
Moaning, wailing
The ghoul
Appeared in the sky.
With his face corroding
Decomposing
The beast
It would not die

floating ghost blog halloween.
In the garden waiting
Anticipating
Dummy
Flashed his knife
With his courage fading
His wooden limbs
Shaking
He would fight for his life

dummy halloween pumpkin scary.
The ghoul it crept
To our hero inept
As a skeleton
Cried from the ground
A gargoyle leered
The pumpkins they feared
That the beast would win this round
But as the ghoul soared
Dummy jumped on the gourd
And sank his knife deep into its chest
The ghoul cried “Boo Hoo!”
‘Cause he knew he was through.
Though he had given it his very best

dummy ghost halloween blog.
The beast
It went to his grave so green
Shouting to all who could hear

You’re all so mean!

But Happy Hallowe’en.

Ghost in the tree small

I’ll see you again next year!

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©Virginia Spencer, thepurpledogpaintingblog.com, 2015