Friday, September 21, 2012

Amongst the Gorillas

Aye, deep in the blue green fastness of the Congo live the gorillas, stalking the primordial forests, looming over all as they happily gobble a couple of dozen pounds of salad each day.  Imagine my shock when I developed my film and saw staring out at me the image of the lost explorer Cholmondeley Featherstonehaugh who disappeared with his able assistant Carruthers into the high forests on the shoulders of the Rift Zone volcanoes in 1901, searching for the elusize and legendary giants who were thought to exist among the brooding peaks of Central Africa. 

Ah yes, that they did, unbelieved in by western science until 1902, when Captain von Beringe found them peacefully munching wild celery on the slopes of Mount Sabyinyo in Rwanda.   The rest is as depressing a history as you'll find in the annals of human stewardship of the Earth.  

No trace of either Featherstonehaugh or Carruthers was ever found save Carruthers' cork helmet, found floating in a lake, split down the middle as if by a giant talon.  Porters were silent except to say that the explorers "should not have gone where men were not wanted." 

Now, gorillas exist in somnolent boredom in places like the San Diego Zoo, slowly trundling about behind glass walls while countless humans in baseball caps, shorts, and tennis shoes wander by and wave little rectangular things at them and each other. 


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