Welcome to the blog of Melanie McDonald ! I'm a professional artist, my life is divided between my home in Newquay, Cornwall and my renovation project - an 18th Century farm - in North Brittany, France. My inspiration comes from the beautiful beaches, skies and seas of Cornwall, Brittany and Scotland. This is where I share my paintings and photographs, I hope it inspires you.

July 03, 2012

Earth Woman

Then, to give Estha and Rahel a sense of historical perspective (though perspective was something which, in the weeks to follow, Chacko himself would sorely lack), he told them about the Earth Woman.  He made them imagine that the earth - four thousand six hundred million years old - was a forty-six-year-old woman - as old, say, as Aleyamma Teacher, who gave them Malayalam lessons.  It had taken the whole of the Earth Woman's life for the earth to become what it was.  For the oceans to part.  For the mountains to rise.  The Earth Woman was eleven years old, Chacko said, when the first single-celled organisms appeared.  The first animals, creatures like worms and jellyfish, appeared only when she was forty.  She was over forty-five - just eight months ago - when dinosaurs roamed the earth.

'The whole of human civilization as we know it,' Chacko told the twins, 'began only two hours ago in the Earth Woman's life.  As long as it takes us to drive from Ayemenem to Cochin.'

It was an awe-inspiring and humbling thought, Chacko said (Humbling was a nice word, Rahel thought.  Humbling along with-out a care in the world), that the whole of contemporary history, the World Wars, the War of Dreams, the Man on the Moon, science, literature, philosophy, the pursuit of knowledge - was no more than a blink of the Earth Woman's eye.

'And we, my dears, everything we are and ever will be - are just a twinkle in her eye,' Chacko said grandly, lying on his bed, staring at the ceiling.

Excerpt from The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

Archive life study painting - private collection
View more of my painting at www.melaniemcdonald.com

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