I always forget about Radio 4xtra (I think that’s how you spell it, though that looks as if it ought to be pronounced ‘fourkstra’) when I’m thinking about stuff to listen to. I find myself longing for radio shows of yesterweek and forgetting that they are probably all there on Radio 4’s sister station. Radio 4, for all its faults, is the best of speech radio and on long wave it has the best-loved programme of all, the shipping forecast (this makes it into one of my ‘Brexit Quartet’ of poems which I’ve written this week):
That’s a link to the shipping forecast, not to my poems – but I have to say, writing four poems in two days takes some beating. Anyway, back to the title which came to me in the middle of the night. I’ve learned from repeated experience that it’s important to write these things down when they come otherwise a) they will repeat in your mind for ages and b) you won’t remember them in the morning – which is the worst of both worlds. So, whose lion is it anyway?
Of course I am in the same position as whoever-it-was who, when asked about a comment they’d written, said ‘when I wrote that only two people knew what it meant – God and me. Now, only God knows.’
Well, perhaps god knows what the lion meant, because I sure as hell don’t: all I have are some associated thoughts. Let’s see where they take us:
First, some bright yellow chevrons outside a primary school in Leicester with lots of signs saying ‘Don’t park on the yellow lions.’ I think this is a great idea and much more likely to succeed as seeming to come from the children rather than a remote and ineffectual authority. A similar idea can be seen by the crossing outside Avenue School in a different part of the city where life-sized models of children are standing by the road, and it brings you up short – every time. Because adults are guilty of forgetting what it’s like to be child-sized; and as Dumbledore said, ‘Youth cannot know how age thinks and feels, but old men are guilty if they forget what it is to be young.’ We have all been children, yet how easily we forget and park on the yellow lions! So I think it’s clear – the lions belong to the children.
There! That did take us somewhere. I shall call it ‘taking a lion for a walk’:
Oh! and, duh! the thing that started it all off was thinking about the show ‘Whose Line is it Anyway?’