Paul’s EXTRA Puzzle this week …….
Watching Storm Ciara overwhelming the trees in our communal garden and howling around the scaffolding opposite my study window, I could not but ask…
Can I really explain the origin of wind and the force of this storm? Can you…really?
I also remembered the amazing poem by Ted Hughes.
Wind Ted Hughes
This house has been far out at sea all night,
The woods crashing through darkness, the booming hills,
Winds stampeding the fields under the window
Floundering black astride and blinding wet
Till day rose; then under an orange sky
The hills had new places, and wind wielded
Blade-light, luminous black and emerald,
Flexing like the lens of a mad eye.
At noon I scaled along the house-side as far as
The coal-house door. I dared once to look up—
Through the brunt wind that dented the balls of my eyes
The tent of the hills drummed and strained its guyrope,
The fields quivering, the skyline a grimace,
At any second to bang and vanish with a flap:
The wind flung a magpie away and a black-
Back gull bent like an iron bar slowly. The house
Rang like some fine green goblet in the note
That any second would shatter it. Now deep
In chairs, in front of the great fire, we grip
Our hearts and cannot entertain book, thought,
Or each other. We watch the fire blazing,
And feel the roots of the house move, but sit on,
Seeing the window tremble to come in,
Hearing the stones cry out under the horizons
Paul’s Puzzles this week are:
Is a marathon runner the ultimate athlete or ultimate fool? Is running that far a test of human will or an example of lack of imagination. All the wasted time!
If time is really objective, why does its passing and duration feel so different, even when the ‘minutes’ are the same? When I train for the 10K and Half-marathon, sometimes the time taken is agony, yet other times, I do not even notice time has passed? Can we really explain time and especially the bizarre times in our dreams?
Why are we so impressed by Mo Farah and Usain Bolt; don’t they just run fast? Why should that evoke such commentary and respect? And Federer and Djokovic; why is tennis a serious life activity for a fully matured human being?
Can we explain why sport moves us? I, like many basketball fans, cried when watching the coverage of Kobe Bryant. Yet, I never knew him and he spent most of his life propelling a ball into a net? (But to me watching as good as anything else I see!)