My sister lived in Eqaluit for years and braved many white-outs, some lasting up to two weeks. Cabin Fever is rampant then. The blowing snow obscures any view from the windows and you are stuck in, because if you went out you couldn't see where you were going and you might end up dead in a snow drift just outside your door. My brother has spent years, as well, in the North, in Fort McMurray, which is on the border of Sam McGee country, The Yukon. No I'm the wimpy one in the family. I could easily winter in the south.
|Ravens in the Yukon|
So why am I torturing myself with the tale of Sam McGee? Well, I needed a picture about reading to children for my post yesterday and I happened to find this book conveniently at the bottom of the stairs. Why, doesn't everyone secrete a poetry book here or there in case the need arises?
Actually, I have always been curious about the opening lines of the poem -
"There are strange things done
in the midnight sun
By the men who moil for gold...."
I have been fascinated by the word "moil." It means to work hard or to move around in confusion or agitation. Not exactly opposite meanings, but I'm not sure that I see any obvious connection. Anyway, I have found an inconsistency in the poem, as well. It is set in winter, where the sun may shine for an hour or two around noon. The midnight sun happens in summer. That being said, it's a very humorous poem and a great one to read at any age and at any time of the day or night!!
My post might have been worse. I was also reading an article about Ravens from Mental Floss. I could have just as easily been writing about Poe's, The Raven. I think I'll save that one for Hallowe'en :)
Have a good one!!
I've never heard of the word "moil". And I've also never heard of Sam McGee. Your post is quite enlightening! I am also a total wimp. I could never survive a white out for more than a few hours. Claustrophobia would surely kick in!ReplyDelete
Thank you, Suerae. I agree, I could never spend much time in the North.Delete
I'm with Suerae about Sam McGee. (Bobby- yep!). Moil- I've heard from my reading. Thanks.ReplyDelete
Thank you, Roy. Love the song, Bobby McGee.Delete
I love your title. Also, thank you for increasing my vocabulary today.ReplyDelete
Thank you. Ann Mullen pointed out that it could come from the word turmoil. Makes sense.Delete
Carol, Moil seems to be related to turmoil.ReplyDelete
The poem reminds me of Casey at Bat. Story poems are really cool, but not in the winter in Alaska. I had a friend, however, who went crazy during the summer up there and had to come to Texas to get some sleep. Humn
Thank you for the connection. Turmoil makes perfect sense.Delete
Moil on, Carol!ReplyDelete
Thank you Caro. I try :)Delete
It is the first time I have ever heard of 'moil'. As for winter, well, if you are the wimpy one I don't know what it would make me. I hate the cold!ReplyDelete
I agree, Muriel. I hate the cold too. Thank you for posting.ReplyDelete