My Inspiration, the Goose

One would think a goose to be a terribly insufficient role model for a writer, but this goose is a particular inspiration of mine. She is from the novel Whittington, by Alan Armstrong, who has reconstructed the tale of Dick Whittington and his cat in this modern adaptation with farm animals. The best animal among them is the goose, whose name is Lady and who carries herself with such dignity as to command all others’ respect for her.

Here is the excerpt which I found so diverting:

It was a curious thing, the Lady’s authority. The horses obeyed her, along with everyone else except the rats. What gave her power was how steady she was. She never rushed; she was always sure, she took responsibility. When something came up, she said what to do. Presence of mind counts for a lot in this world. The Lady was as confident of her judgment as she was of her beauty. Nothing so improves the appearance as a good opinion of oneself.

It is commanding enough to be a sermon or Sunday school lesson. Whenever there is an inspirational message or motivational piece, there should always be an example of model character. This goose is by no means real, but she is a genuinely wonderful model character.

The curious thing about the Lady is that she’s particularly ugly; though she has clipped wings, a lopsided gait, and an irregular shading of colored feathers, she does command the respect of those around her, and that is the admirable quality which I find so comforting and inspiring.

I think that even the best of preachers would give an example like this to encourage their audience. Thanks to Alan Armstrong for creating such a good character.


3 thoughts on “My Inspiration, the Goose

  1. More than outward beauty, it is confidence and self control make men and women attractive, while smugness and foolhardy repel. If a woman believes that she is beautiful, she becomes beautiful. I’ve seen many a pretty woman that on closer inspection finding that without the fancy hair, make-up, and smile she would more resemble a bulldog or ostrich. Confidence, attitude (self control), joy, and love. These qualities can not be faked and when present can elevate even the homely goose to the status of beauty queen. Of course those (such as yourself) blessed with a natural beauty only become even more radiant.

    1. Thank you, Dave! I agree and I have seen this in my own life. This chapter confirms that outward beauty results from inward confidence. I’ve been blessed to be around many who agree, both my family and my friends. You and Julie have been a blessing to us. Thank you!

      1. On a side note, the phrase “your goose is cooked” was first coined from the martyrdom of the Christian reformer John Hus (1372-1415). Hus’ name in German sounded like “goose”. Thus, as he was burned, they coined the term “Hus is cooked (or, “your goose is cooked)” in German.

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