Friday, February 15, 2013

Traipsing Through the Forest at Night

Hey my brother-in-law David has informed me about a new kind of owl! Well, I am sure the owl has been around awhile, but people have just noticed it and put it on a big list of owls somewhere. According to the article, an ornithologist discovered the owl "while traipsing through the forest at night," which seems like a curious way to put it. But that's what it says! I am reminded of the first sentence of Padgett Powell's novel MRS. HOLLINGSWORTH'S MEN: "Mrs. Hollingsworth likes to traipse." Hey speaking of sentences and big lists of owls you know I have to tell you whenever a book has an owl in it, and now that I am rereading TRUE GRIT for class, I see this: "They had ridden the 'hoot-owl trail' and tasted the fruits of evil and now justice had caught up with them to demand payment." Portis's narrator, Mattie Ross, tends to put her quotation marks around what she considers vernacular phrases, but I am not familiar with the "hoot-owl trail," though its meaning seems clear enough.