Friday, 3 March 2017

Post-Change Sensations

SM Stirling, The Protector's War (New York, 2006), pp. 24-25.

In many works by Poul Anderson and SM Stirling, there is a fine literary tradition of appealing to at least three senses in descriptive passages. On a farm after the Change:

Smells
"...turned earth wet with the morning..." (p. 24);
smoke;
manure;
baking bread.

(A mixture!)

Sounds
the rising and falling moan of a spinning wheel;
the rhythmic thumping of a loom;
a whirling metal wind pump.

Color
"...apples glowing red among the leaves." (p. 25)

Beyond the farm is wilderness:

a hawthorn and bramble hedge twenty or more feet high covering a lane and a field;
chest high dock and nettle;
thorns;
tough wood;
dense leaves;
loud birds;
insects;
small game;
rabbits;
most of lowland Britain covered with vegetation and a new forest growing.

A post-apocalypse scenario descibed in minute detail.

1 comment:

  1. Kaor, Paul!

    While most of us could easily do without the smell of manure, I do realize that odor will be found on any practical, working farm having animals like cows, pigs, horses, etc.

    Sean

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